We have received a number of queries and concerns about the recent decision to change the membership fees structure. This statement seeks to clarify the reasoning behind the change.
Our growing and important society is comprised of physicians, physiologists, nurses and trainees. The largest proportion of our membership are cardiac physiologists with the smallest proportion our nursing colleagues.
The BHRS council view all members as equal. Members have the same rights to vote, opportunities to be elected to council and are able to raise concerns and ask for guidance. The council felt that having different membership fees was incongruous with that value. The fees have not been increased for a number of years, and decreasing physicians’ fees to £40 in line with other professions was not financially viable.
A number of proposed fee structures were debated by council members and finally a formal vote was taken. (The other proposed options are displayed in the December 7th 2017 council meeting minutes on page 6, www.bhrs.com/council-meeting-minutes).
The vote narrowly fell in favour of setting the fees at an even £60 for all qualified physicians and physiologists. For our nursing colleagues and trainees it was agreed to offer a discounted rate to encourage these groups to join the society. The BHRS membership fees continue to compare very favourably with
those of similar national bodies.
The council recognised that this proposed change means an increase of annual fees of £20 for the physiologist members, and that this may be difficult at a time of stagnant wages. However the BHRS is actively investing in a number of initiatives that will see members getting more advantages for their membership. Thisincludes access to a secure ‘members only’ area in a revamped website, increased access to educational materials and the like.
Furthermore, members retain the benefits of registration for Heart Rhythm Congress, where their membership fees are used pro-rata to discount their registration fees.
The fee structure will be reviewed annually by council, and constructive feedback from members will find a voice in these discussions.
We hope this statement clarifies our position. We encourage you to continue to support the society and welcome queries, concerns, contributions and urge you to contact the society with any feedback and suggestions.