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Message from the President

 Mr Mark Henley

The Confederation of British Surgery (CBS) is an official trade union which seeks to work in partnership with all stakeholders in surgery to improve the working lives of surgeons and anaesthetists.  As a trade union, CBS has the advantage of being able to provide members of the surgical community access to additional support and resources that the Specialty Associations and Colleges cannot offer due to their charitable status.

The FSSA ( comprises the Presidents of the ten Surgical Specialty Associations recognised by the GMC plus the President of the Association of Anaesthetists. As a corporate body it represents and coordinates the views, aims and policies of surgeons and anaesthetists from across the United Kingdom and Ireland

Whilst I was President of BAPRAS, the FSSA supported the establishment of CBS as an official trade union along the same lines as the Association of Chief Police Officers and the Association of Revenue and Customs (senior tax officers). We believe in collaboration, not confrontation, to help identify and address concerns before they become real problems and will reach solutions through dialogue and clear consideration of the issues.

CBS also represents members who are having problems in the workplace. Although at an early stage of development, we have already received very positive feedback from both members and employing Trusts.

The Foundation Trust network estimates total expenditure on surgery to be approximately 4% of the NHS Budget.   According to the GMC and NHS Digital (October 2020), there were just over 200,000 doctors licensed to practice in the UK with 123,000 FTE doctors working in NHS Trusts of whom 10,000 were Consultant Surgeons and 6800 Consultant Anaesthetists

Surgeons and Anaesthetists as a group constitute only a small minority of medical practitioners in both Primary and Secondary Care in the UK and the priorities of both the BMA and HCSA (and MDO’s) understandably reflect this. 

I believe that surgical practice is very different in nature and environment to other areas of medical and health service practice, and beyond the comprehension of most. I believe that working closely and collaboratively with the FSSA is both timely and very relevant to current and future practice.  This is why I feel privileged to be the first elected president of CBS. 

I hope that you will consider joining us.    

Best wishes
Mark Henley FRCS (Plast) 
President CBS