Promoting medico-legal knowledge in all its aspects

Malcolm Brahams

On 30th September “The Times” reported research by Sheffield University which throws doubt on the result from a Breathalyser test when the driver is shorter or older. The article acknowledges that the research was published in in the Medico-Legal Journal

During the pandemic, Zoom enabled us to continue our programme of meetings and to reach members who lived many miles from London, with a significant number joining us from overseas. Although we have hopefully emerged from the Covid years, we have continued to relay our meetings on Zoom, enabling our more distant members to continue to participate.

Initially, we relied on a laptop and an omni-directional microphone/speaker (a “Polysync.”) That setup successfully relayed the faces and voices of the speakers and their slides but was less effective in picking up the voices of questioners in the audience or remote attendees or displaying them onscreen to each other.

Through the Medico-Legal Journal – particularly its online version – the Society’s reach is now truly international and, to reflect that, we turned to a specialist supplier of audio/visual kit to help us relay our meetings more successfully. The camera and audio equipment we are now using have enabled remote members joining us via Zoom to be seen and heard in the hall. For their part, the remote attendees can now hear not just the speaker and the President but also the questioners in the hall. They also get a better view of the in-person event and see something of the audience. A by-product is an improved experience for members accessing recordings of our meetings.

To show a good view of the questioners we would really need a second camera, some fairly sophisticated control equipment and a skilful operator as well. As it is, our bar student volunteers are doing a sterling job running the zoom call and the existing remote control camera and the experience on Zoom should hopefully improve as we and they come to grips with the equipment.