Hello.  My name is Angela.

As a patient with Black heritage, my journey within patient and public engagement groups has been transformative, empowering, and deeply meaningful; I feel I have gained so much more in learning from the experiences of others, as well as sharing my own.

The area of genomics and genomics medicine is of specific interest to me, due to lived experience of sickle cell anaemia trait within my family, and throughout my working career as HR director within the NHS.  In this role, I had responsibility for establishing several Equality and Diversity policies as well as involvement in delivering training sessions.

I have 12 years’ experience of volunteering within a number of patient and public involvement groups, as I feel they provide an essential platform to advocate for the needs of Black, and other minority ethnic communities, within the healthcare system.

Patient and Public Panels, such as the Alliance’s Patient and Public Voice Panel (PPVP) aim to bridge the gap between healthcare providers and patients, fostering collaboration and co-designing healthcare services that reflect the diverse needs of our communities. 

Black and minority ethnic communities still face disparities and health inequalities in healthcare access and outcome, which makes my involvement in these groups so important.

The voices of underrepresented communities need to be heard; our stories, experiences and concerns matter. 

The PPVP provides a safe space where we can share our unique perspectives and bring attention to issues that might otherwise go unnoticed. Being able to advocate for equitable access to genomics and genomics medicine is vital, so I feel that I am helping to combat stereotypes and ensure that healthcare services are designed to be inclusive, and respectful of diverse backgrounds. 

I can contribute to discussions about transformational projects, research programs, and culturally competent healthcare practices that directly address these disparities.  Collaboration is at the heart of everything we try to achieve.

Together, we can initiate conversations about the importance of diversity and representation, and by advocating for more inclusive participation, we can ensure that genomics and genomics medicine will benefit everyone, regardless of their racial or ethnic background.

As we continue to raise our voices and advocate for change, we can make a significant impact on the healthcare landscape and pave the way for a healthier and more inclusive future.