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Academy President reflects on the death of Shirley Fletcher


“I was saddened to hear of the unexpected death of Shirley Fletcher who had bravely battled cancer which many believed she seemed to be winning.

Shirley’s work on the Healthcare Science National Occupational Standards in Healthcare Science in the late 90s was a critical enabler and building block for Modernising Scientific Careers. From the very beginning of the NOS  her work helped many scientific professions to frame education and training outcomes in a way which described competence and the necessary elements to achieve  this.

Many of you will  remember with fond affection the visits to her then training centre in Waterlooville to develop a new  way of describing roles and function to inform education and training developments. Shirley was patient, and put up with a lot of competitive, defensive and fiercely proud scientists who wanted to represent their patch and make sure we got it right. It was Shirley’s experience, calmness and humour which made sure a good job was done.

Now for generations, healthcare scientist training will benefit from that seminal piece of work, even though they may never have heard of Shirley.  On behalf of the Academy, I offer our sincere condolences to her family and friends and we thank her for taking us kicking and screaming into the 21st century. May she rest in peace.”

Dr Brendan G Cooper
President, AHCS

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