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Video clip: Krina says that the Wellcome Trust is fantastic in the way it supports women who become pregnant during a fellowship. The Trust paid her and the research staff and extended the grant for an extra six months.

Did you get maternity pay to start with?

Absolutely. So I was fortunate that was, I was really in the middle of my Wellcome Trust Fellowship and the Wellcome Trust is fantastic at supporting maternity and maternity arrangements and pay. In fact what they do is the; I took six months maternity leave and six months that you have out of work they actually add to the end of your Fellowship.

And they pay you during that time? You still get the money?

Yes.

Oh, that’s very supportive.

So, that’s very supportive and in fact what they, what they ended up doing as well is they, because of course you may end up at the end having your own salary but not having any staff because, you know, the money for them has run out. So they met that as well. So essentially I had another six months of staff salaries beyond my, at the end of my Fellowship, which has made a huge difference.

Mm. When you were off for those six months, did your staff go on working?

Yes.

Did you find that tricky? Did you want to come in and see what they were doing? Did you keep in touch or what happened?

So, so again, one of the advantages that I have in the kind of work that we do is that’s all computational. It’s not lab based, so there’s no need to physically be in a certain place.

Mm.

Everything can be done remotely. And I was also fortunate that the postdoc I had literally just employed in the year before I went off maternity leave was excellent, and very independent and very self-sufficient. So she just, you know, we talked about what needed to be done and she just got on with it. And obviously asked me questions by email or we would have phone calls. But that was, actually having the right person in that time is hugely important. What it meant for me is that during that period actually my publication record didn’t really get affected all that much because work just continued.

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