alexa Paediatric Pathology Society –PPS

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Paediatric Pathology Society –PPS

The Paediatric Pathology Society (PPS), started in 1955 as the Paediatric Pathology Club, is composed of pathologists who specialise in or have a major interest in the pathology of the fetus, neonate or child. The Society exists to promote paediatric pathology in its widest sense, embracing all the disciplines of pathology, but most members are now Histopathologists. Membership is largely European, reflecting the origins of the Society, but is open to those from anywhere in the world.

The origins of the first Paediatric Pathology Club lay in the rapid development of paediatrics that occurred in the United Kingdom associated with the introduction of the National Health Service in 1948. This, for the first time, introduced facilities for children's hospitals and the possibility of doctors taking up full time careers in paediatrics and paediatric pathology. The British Paediatric Association, which was then a club restricted to 60 members, held a single annual meeting each year at Bowness on Windermere in the Lake District. It was traditional that the members brought along at least one guest and one assistant. This brought a small group of people doing paediatric pathology together each year.

At that time the distinction between academic paediatricians and paediatric pathologists was much less than today. The British Paediatric Association meeting were very social gatherings and foreign visitors were always invited so that each year there was usually someone from other parts of the world such as David McKenzie from Capetown. There were always laboratory oriented people from Scandinavia such as John Lind and others from Holland and France. At that time most people doing paediatric pathology were basically paediatricians who had a particular feel for laboratory sciences and most ran the complete pathology service for their hospitals.

The Paediatric Pathology Club was inaugurated by those attending a meeting held after dinner in the bar at the BPA meeting Easter 1955 when Agnes MacGregor took the chair. We called a first meeting in Dr. Macgregor's department in Edinburgh in December 1955. All those interested from abroad were notified together with all those we knew locally concerned with children's pathology. This included a considerable number of general pathologists, some of who, such as Gladstone Osborne of Derby, were extremely active in children's pathology and Rupert Willis who had recently completed the "Borderland". The founder members included Agnes Macgregor, John L. Emery, H. Basil Marsden, J. Edgar Morison, Jean M. Scott, F. Langley, A. MacDonald, D. Bain, N. Brown, E. Hall, E. Allibone, K. Rogers, B. Ockenden, H. Cameroon and many others. It was decided to run an informal club for a few years and this was accepted at the first general meeting of the Society, to run a general club for the first years, open to anyone who was interested and that the secretary would simple hold a circulation list. 

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