Bios for Executive Committee members of SCPS

5 minutes

Sophie Gray

"In 2016 I was elected to the Executive Committee of SCPS. Initially a member of the Meetings & Seminars sub-committee, I assembled the scientific programme for our 2017, 2018 and 2019 conferences. During this time, I also re-designed and developed our new and unique website and helped set-up and implement the Society's first virtual congress in 2020. For the past 12 months I have been Chair of Education & Training. This role requires me to ensure that we influence the direction of education and development and meet the professional demands of our members. As Chair, I would like to promote not only the education and training of our students, but of the entire membership. This year I have introduced the new Limited Registrant route with a Society accredited postgraduate certificate course in Perfusion Science, and I hope to implement our new venture utilising our SCPS website for educational online training for the membership. By developing this online tool, I hope to work with the membership to offer an alternative to attending courses in-person by offering the opportunity to access high quality and perfusion-specific online learning. I hope these courses will help support and encourage CPD amongst our members.

I would love to continue my position within the committee to assist the membership to build on our already fantastic profession, bringing creativity and new ideas. I want to motivate, inspire, and involve all members. I hope to help the profession reach its full potential with a shared educational vision resulting in shared educational outcomes."

Aswani Pillai

"Hello, my name is Aswani and I am standing for office for the Society of Clinical Perfusionists of Great Britain and Ireland.

The past eighteen months, our Perfusion community have banded together to deliver highly specialised care to a large volume of critically ill patients. Perfusionists have felt the profound effects of COVID-19, its impact on our professional, personal lives and mental well-being.

My specific Perfusion interest is in the ECMO sub-speciality, its advancement and regulation. ECMO has shared the coronavirus limelight and undergone demonstrable technological and scientific advancement. Now more than ever, Perfusionists can be an integral part of its future growth and I hope to use my experience in ECMO service delivery, service development and clinical governance to meet the demands of our Perfusion community.

I would be honoured to be elected into the Society, who have been working tirelessly to ensure the Perfusion body is recognised, respected and considered amongst the wider medical multidisciplinary. As a member of the BAME community, I feel it is the right time to stand for office to ensure a unique, intersectional perspective of the Perfusion community is seen, heard and represented.

Thank you all for your consideration."

Jacqui Simmons

"I left cardiothoracic critical care as a senior sister to train as a clinical perfusionist and I qualified in 2003. I have experienced many different techniques, procedures and experiences within my 20 years in perfusion and 26 years in cardiac surgery and I believe that I could be of value to the Society’s executive Committee. Professionally, as I became a more experienced perfusionist I was able to undertake the training and development of other trainee perfusionists developing a competency based training package for all trainees to augment and formalise their academic experience. Part of this programme involved formalising protocols for education which I have then expanded to cover all elements of perfusion practise at UHCW NHS Trust validating through governance processes and making them available through intranet services. I have undertaken research and audit processes including blood conservation strategies and mycobacterium chimera management, with the chimer paper gaining publication. I undertook the examiner course in 2015 and have utilised my training and experience in conducting trainee exams.  Academically, I completed a Masters in Health and Social Care leadership and management in 2012. My thesis focused on perfusion safety and error with the application of simulation. This is a specialist area that I continue to be involved in with various elements of simulation being utilised to plan and develop our protocols and procedures. I also started a human factors programme that I run through QIPs, which reviews cases and develops learning. From this programme we have implemented the non-heparin guideline through the medicines management committee and drug and therapeutics. I completed a reflective review on PPE and Covid and presented that at stand-up. I aim to follow up with further reflections and publish. The Covid 19 pandemic has been an extremely challenging time for all and I feel that it essential that we learn from it and I hope that this will enable it. The NHS has forever been changed by what has happened and as a profession I believe we will need to adapt and evolve I would like to be part of this as a Society executive."

Rosie Smith

"I am a lead perfusionist at Royal Brompton Hospital, currently acting as the ECMO Lead Perfusionist assisting with the governance and education of the busy ECMO service – one of the 5 nationally commissioned respiratory ECMO centres. I am a knowledgeable perfusionist with experience in all aspects of clinical perfusion including adult and paediatric bypass, complex aortic surgery, transplant, VAD and ECMO. I am also very interested in the ‘human’ side of perfusion having qualifications in human factors as well as carrying out research on the wellbeing of the UK and Ireland perfusion community.

I have served on the executive committee of the Society of Clinical Perfusion Scientists since 2019. During this time I have been part of the Meetings and Seminar’s sub-committee, helping to organise the first successful webinar based AGM in 2020 and the first Wellbeing Webinar in Spring 2021. I have also formed the first Equality, Diversity and Inclusion sub-committee of the SCPS which is focused on consciously ensuring all perfusionists are represented and supported by the organisation. If re-elected, I would continue my work on equality and diversity by surveying the membership to gain understanding of the demographic makeup and form working groups to work on issues directly raised by the membership."

Ben Littlejohns
Website editor