Functions Of Ibms And Msf Essay Research

Functions Of Ibms And Msf Essay, Research Paper The Nature Of Professional Bodies, Trade Unions and special Interest Groups In the United Kingdom and Ireland there are many professional

Functions Of Ibms And Msf Essay, Research Paper

The Nature Of Professional Bodies, Trade Unions and special

Interest Groups

In the United Kingdom and Ireland there are many professional

bodies, trade unions and special interest groups around each specific and

unique in its own way. In general professional bodies take care of

maintaining a high standard of professional qualification and practice, Trade

unions represent individual members protecting their rights at work. Special

interest groups promote issues within its boundaries.

Within biomedical science the professional body is The Institute of

Biomedical Science (IBMS) and the Manufacturing Science Finance (MSF)

is the trade union. There are many special interest groups. Some of which

are The British Society for Clinical Cytology (BSCC) and The British Society

for Microbial Technology (BSMT). These are the organizations I will be

looking into and finding out what they are, their main purposes for their

members as well as comparing then against each other.

The institute of biomedical science (IBMS) was founded in 1912 and

has been registered a charity. It used to be called the Institute of Medical

Laboratory Sciences but was changed in January 1994. It is the professional

body for biomedical scientists in the United Kingdom and Ireland. It is

available to all biomedical scientists in all fields of work. Most of its

members live and work in the Uk and Ireland but some others are employed

abroad. In all IBMS has around 15,000 members.

IBMS aims

to promote and develop biomedical science and its practitioners, to

establish and maintain professional standards and to be the influential

professional body in biomedical science .(1)

To do this the institutes most important purpose is that it represents

the profession in meetings. These meetings are held with a variety of

people, employers, course organizers, educational and scientific authorities,

government departments and with other professional bodies and influential

people. The aim of the meetings are towards the institutes members so that

the correct requirements of the profession are considered when changes

take place and to insure that they are made to benefit the biomedical

laboratory services and its workers.

The IBMS has many purposes all of which are important but some

more then others. It helps answer its members professional queries and

gives advice on many topics affecting their working lives. The service also

provides a legal 24 hour help-line for domestic and general employment

problems which includes a confidential counseling service. Should an IBMS

member be involved in a legal action related to their profession the institute

can provide immediate support, advice and representation. This is not a

legal service, they can not get involved and fight cases.

IBMS is also involved in the educational field. It helps in the designing

and developing of BSc and MSc degree courses aimed towards the

profession and forwards its ideas to be accredited. To do this the institute

maintains close contact with the heads of University Centers of Biomedical

Science groups. With this close contact the institute advises them on the

content required, ensures the courses are relevant to biomedical science

and that they are taught well.

Some other functions of IBMS are it is consulted by health authorities

on matters concerning the profession, it appoints and nominates official

representatives and acts as a peer group to set the minimum professional

standards required. It also organises scientific meetings so biomedical

scientists can meet and discuss any ideas they have. It also informs the

public with relevant information.

Membership costs 94 and includes legal advice, financial services,

IBMS travel club, income tax relief on subscription, access to insurance,

IBMS member loans and mortgage services.

Also available are the magazines published by IBMS, the Biomedical

Scientists published monthly, and the British Journal of Biomedical Science

which comes out quarterly.

Manufacturing Science Finance (MSF) is one of the largest trade

unions in the United Kingdom, with over 400,000 members in both public

and private sections. MSF was formed in January 1988 when the two

unions Association of Scientific, Technical and Managerial staffs (ASTMS)

and the Technical, Administrative and Supervisory Staffs (TASS) merged.

The joining of the two unions now means that skilled and professional

employers can have the proper support for their skills to be adequately


MSF is the union for skilled and professional people. It fights for its

members whenever and wherever necessary. Membership covers nearly

every industry and service, this is what makes MSF unique compared to

other trade unions. MSF believes that

all aspects of working life should be the subject of discussion and

agreement between employers and the representatives of the trade unions

to which their employees belong. The skilled and professional people who

are our members expert recognition for the contribution that they make to

their employers success. (2)

One of the main concerns of MSF is the way in which people are

treated at work, bullying, racism and harassment are not acceptable. It has

strong campaigns for these areas for all its employees whoever they are.

Another of MSF aims is that all its members should be treated fairly

and everyone has equal opportunities at work. Also no one person of a

minor group should be discriminated against no matter what group they are

a member of. All this is shown by the cases which MSF fights, it has legal

rights to protect its members with.

Examples of this are Desmond Smith, a male health visitor who was

sacked for writing to his MP about racist treatment he was receiving at work.

MSF took up his case and he received money for unfair dismissal and his

professional reputation saved,

MSF understood how much more that mattered to me – much more

that the money . (3)

Another example of this is just near to where I live at the Daewoo

Worthing Technical Centre. MSF is trying to stop many compulsory

redundancies to preserve the workers skills for the new owners Ford. The

redundancies have no business sense and are only happening to satisfy

shareholders of Korean banks who own the company. Ford are buying the

company based on its current capabilities, the sacking of 250 workers will

affect the companies ability to come up with new ideas.

The MSF campaign is about putting a halt to these damaging job

loses, in order to preserve the skills and expertise that exist at the Worthing

design Centre. (4)

MSF has many other functions which are important to its members

including, providing training to workplace representatives on industrial

issues, providing support, encouragement and advising them in all aspects

of their work. It has political influence through Labour Party MP`s, a group of

82 members in both Houses of Parliament and 8 members in the European

Parliament. The group considers matters referred to it by the NEC. Overall

MSF is aimed towards its members and protecting their rights at work.

Special interest groups are there to discuss certain issues about

biomedical science. The groups are formed by professionals in that area of

work as well as interested members. The British Society for Clinical

Cytology is aimed towards promoting cytology and consist of around 500

members. The members are generally biomedical and clinicians scientists.

It promotes cytology in many different ways, from meetings to examinations.

The British Society for Microbial Technology is a much smaller group

designed for the members interested in Microbiology, but more specifically

in the application of microbiological technology. For its members it produces

a newsletter which includes articles written by its members telling of their

experiences and sets up meetings once a year.

To sum up professional bodies, like IBMS, are mainly concerned with

the profession which they represent. Making sure the profession is run

properly, meting the standards required and that relevant courses are

teaching the correct material required. It also aids its members who are in

difficulties with its help-line. It can assist its members in legal cases but

cannot fight the cases for them. It is all about the profession not the

individuals. This is where trade unions differ, like MSF, their main concern is

with the individuals not the profession. They are there to represent their

members when difficulties arise within the work place. It stands up for its

members when unfair dismissal and ill-treatment occur at work. Trade

unions focus on the individual, meting their needs at work and not the whole

profession. Special interest groups aim their efforts towards specific

sections of the profession and its members. It has no legal service for its

members and has no say in how its section is run. This is shown by the

small numbers of members special interest groups have. All have their

advantages and disadvantages, depending on what your personal issues

are depends on what group you join.


(4) Fleming D. MSF Regional Officer. (2000), Daewoo Pushing

ahead with redundancies despite Ford s bid, (


(2) MSF, What is MSF?, What do we believe?, (


(3) Smith D. MSF the union for health professionals,

(1) The Institute of Biomedical Science, General Information, Leaflet


MSF, Daewoo pushing ahead with redundancies despite Ford s

bid, (

MSF the union of health professionals

MSF, What is MSF, (www, 01.11.2000

Sheetf. T. E. (1999), Trade Associations and Professional Bodies in

in the United Kingdom, 15th edition

The Institute of Biomedical Science, About IBMS, (


The Institute of Biomedical Science, General Information, Leaflet

The Institute of Biomedical Science, Your Profession, Leaflet