SWiG Newsletter - March 2024

Welcome message from the SWiG Chair

Welcome to the first edition of the SWiG committee newsletter. What better day to launch this than on International Women’s Day (Friday 8th March) which gives us an opportunity to recognise and celebrate the invaluable contributions made by women working within gastroenterology and hepatology.

This year’s IWD theme is #InspireInclusion. At present 24% of the gastroenterology and hepatology consultant workforce are women compared with 41% across all medical specialties. The last BSG Workforce report identifies that the demographic is changing as women and those who work less than full time are likely to increase, but these groups remain under-represented in certain subspecialties. Given the predicted workforce shortfall, the report highlights that further consideration of how to recruit, retain and develop talent from these groups remains imperative.

Misha Kabir, SWiG Chair

SWiG webinar on career progression and work-life balance

Please register for our free webinar and join us live on Thursday 23rd May from 6pm – 7pm or on-demand when made available. Ms. Verena Hefti, an award-winning CEO of social enterprise Leaders Plus, will be speaking on achieving career leadership ambitions whilst still being present for family life as a working parent. Consultant gastroenterologist, Dr Shahida Din, will be discussing overcoming the barriers to integrating research with clinical commitments and ‘finding your tribe’ as an NHS clinical academic.

Diverse Speakers Database

A contributing factor to attrition in women entering leadership and academic roles includes a perceived lack of similar role models. We encourage conference organisers to ensure that their speaker panels are diverse and inclusive. We have set up a database for fresh talent from lesser represented groups. Please nominate yourself or others as speaker suggestions to be added to the list via this link. This Diverse Speakers database will be available at the BSG offices for judicious distribution on request by BSG members seeking a speaker based on their expertise for their event. Please email comms@bsg.org.uk to access its contents.

Upcoming elections for BSG SWiG committee positions

SWiG’s agenda is to continue raising awareness of the challenges facing women and provide a support network across their careers. We urge anyone with an interest in shaping SWiG’s objectives and future outputs to please nominate yourselves for a position in the SWiG committee in the upcoming BSG elections. We are a welcoming committee (inclusive of all genders!) and benefit hugely from the contributions made by the diverse interests held by our members. Look out for an email with details on how to nominate yourselves and get involved.