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Our long-established members’ magazine, BMA News, will enter the next chapter in its history this weekend.
It was back in 1966 that the association launched BMA News, as a means of improving communication with and between its members.
It has changed format a number of times to keep up with member demands and communication advances.For more than two decades it was BMA News Review, before switching back to the shorter title, and the current news-led format, in 2001.Back then, only a third of the population was using the internet and a print magazine with a five-day gap between it being sent for printing and delivery to members was still the best way to keep the majority informed.Today, that is not the case. Increasingly, for readers accustomed to getting their news where and when they want it, the concept of print has become very dated. So in future, a greater proportion of our news coverage will appear on our website, with a focus on local and regional developments as well as those happening at a national level.This gives the opportunity to deliver a print magazine for our members with really relevant and important content about the issues that affect doctors’ lives and the context in which they work.The new magazine, which will be called The Doctor and published monthly, will be four times the length of BMA News, and include in-depth features which we hope will inform and (hopefully) entertain, plus a much greater focus on the life stories and experiences of our members.There will also be interviews, the best of our opinion columns, and short, factual explainer pieces about issues affecting us today.One aspect I’m particularly looking forward to in the new magazine will be a focus on the day-to-day practical support we can offer to doctors who find themselves in difficulty at work and receive help from all of our excellent staff in all four countries.The Doctor will sit alongside all of the other ways in which we engage in conversations with our members – for example, through our website, social media and regular enewsletters.This is and remains a magazine for our members.Our best content is always informed by, and often written by, our members and we encourage you to play an active part in highlighting issues you think our team should be covering.The first issue will be with you from Saturday, and will include some detailed and persuasive analysis on the implications of Brexit and the effect of fatigue on junior doctors.It’s your magazine, and I’m confident it will continue to play an important role in how, as doctors, we communicate with each other in the future.Andrew Dearden is BMA treasurer
I have just finished reading much of what you are offering in the successor BMA News. Too early to judge but my first impression as a Life Member and interested reader of most BMA publications that reach me, I am unimpressed.
Sorry to disappoint those who are selling this new broom ! Abdul Jaleel BMA Fellow