Your Society: Rachel's first message as CEO

Published: 01 Apr 2020
Category: Your Society

I would like to start by reiterating how honoured and delighted I am to join the British Pharmacological Society, and to be leading an organisation that clearly has its members at its heart.

It has only been a few weeks since I took over the reins, yet in that time I have already witnessed incredible commitment, dynamism and talent from our trustees, members and staff. I am in debt to my predecessor Jono Bruun, for the inspirational leadership that brought the Society to this point; he is a hard act to follow. I would like to personally thank Jono for handing me such a high functioning and effective Society, and also extend my gratitude to Mike Poole, for his capable and energetic steering of the ship­­ until I arrived. I join half way through the Society’s 5 year strategy and am looking forward to building on the excellent work by you, our members, and the team, delivering on our vision of a world in which pharmacology and therapeutics drive and support progress in science, medicine and healthcare. Excellent progress was made on our strategic objectives last year, and we are in a strong position to continue to build on our achievements throughout 2020.

However, if one thing is sure in these uncertain times, it is that 2020 will perhaps turn out not exactly as planned due to the COVID-19 pandemic. I joined the BPS just as the virus began to substantially affect all our lives, and it not only changed my own activities in these first few weeks, but those of our members and staff as well. We know that everyone has been impacted by the virus and its repercussions in some way, and at the Society, we have been working hard to understand how best we can support our membership and the wider pharmacological community.

As a result, a number of initiatives related to COVID-19 are in development, these include: how to effectively highlight and share clinical developments, how to understand and communicate how our members are supporting the COVID-19 response, and providing a destination for sharing and seeking support. In relation to sharing support, for example, the new BPS Community website and mobile app are enabling us to engage with members in a new way, and we are considering how this platform and our Society website can offer further help and communications in the coming weeks. If you would like to be invited to the Community website before its wider release in May, please do let us know. Naturally, we have had to cancel a number of workshops and events due to COVID-19, but we are looking at how we can provide some of that content virtually instead, in order to continue to fulfil our commitment to advancing pharmacology. We are hoping to run our flagship conference - Pharmacology 2020 - in December as planned, but we are of course keeping a watching brief on government guidelines related to gatherings and will make any changes necessary. Finally, I would like to take this opportunity to thank all staff, members and trustees for their understanding and flexibility in the current circumstances. These may be challenging times, but I am proud that we are still able to deliver for our community and provide a close and supportive environment. The remainder of this year may be more uncertain than we could ever have imagined, but rest assured that you, our members, remain at the heart of everything we do.

More from Your Society


Blog post currently doesn't have any comments.

If you are a British Pharmacological Society member, please sign in to post comments.