New Royal College of Emergency Medicine President begins term

20 September 2016

Dr Tajek Hassan has officially taken up the post of President of the Royal College of Emergency Medicine.

Dr Hassan, an Emergency Medicine Consultant at Leeds General Infirmary, was officially sworn in at the College’s AGM on Tuesday 20 September, after winning the ballot held in March.

He has previously served as Vice President and replaces outgoing President Dr Clifford Mann, who completed a highly successful term. 

Dr Hassan said: “I am absolutely delighted and honoured to be taking up the presidency of RCEM. I would of course like to firstly pay tribute to my predecessor Clifford Mann for his excellent work over the past three years - he has done the specialty proud with his unstinting efforts on our behalf. 

“We know that our urgent and emergency care systems face incredible challenges at present. Performance is the worse in over a decade due to a host of complex reasons and reflects that the care we deliver to our patients is being compromised all too frequently. At times safety is a serious concern in our Emergency Departments (ED) due to overcrowding and a lack of adequate numbers of both junior and senior staff. I know that we have the talent and expertise in our workforce as well as at the College to meet these challenges for the sake of our patients. But change is needed and the present situation is not sustainable.

“Let us be in no doubt that we will need to work hard and at pace with governments, policy makers, regulators and commissioners to focus on solutions that can be delivered consistently and in a timely fashion. Time is not at all on our side and proper investment is required if we value having safer emergency care systems for our patients. 

“Wider systems solutions are required to minimise exit block. Staff working in Emergency Departments do so in the most intense environments in healthcare and must have better structured work patterns so they can practise in a safe, sustainable, satisfying and productive manner. 

“Finally, of course, training our junior clinicians – they must be truly valued and allowed to flourish so that we can retain them and they can excel in their future careers.

“Only then will we meet our core objectives of providing the quality care that our patients need and deserve when they seek our help in their time of greatest need. 

“We are a proud, passionate specialty and I am delighted as the new President of the Royal College of Emergency Medicine to be able to serve our members, fellows and most of all our patients to the best of my abilities.” 

The College is pleased to welcome Dr Hassan to the role and wishes him every success in his Presidency.