Dr. Rafael Molina was Senior Consultant in the Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics Service at the Biomedical Diagnostic Centre (CDB) at the Hospital Clínic Barcelona. After a long career full of achievements, on 15 December 2022 the Board of Directors of the Spanish Society of Laboratory Medicine (SEML) granted him the Scientific Committee Award posthumously. The official presentation with the commemorative plaque will take place at the 20th Scientific Committee Conference, which will be held in Madrid on 30-31 March 2023.
Dr. Rafael Molina graduated in Medicine from the University of Barcelona (UB) in 1979 and completed his specialty in Clinical Analysis in 1983 at the Hospital Clínic, where he worked until he became Senior Consultant in the Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics Service at the Biomedical Diagnostic Centre (CDB).
Moreover, his career also developed outside the Hospital Clínic. He was Assistant Professor in the Oncology Department of the Health Science Center in San Antonio, Texas (1989). He was also Assistant Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology in the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Barcelona. Moreover, he was president of the Tumour Markers group of the Spanish Society of Clinical Chemistry and of the International Society of Oncology and Biomarkers (ISOBM). Starting in 2010, he was the director and a founding member of European Group on Tumour Markers (EGTM). He formed part of the organising committee for 18 international conferences and over 20 courses on the clinical utility of markers in Spain, China, Germany and Brazil. Dr. Molina also authored over 200 publications, 175 of which were original articles.
In addition to his achievements as a health professional, he was also the president of the Medical Delegates Committee (CDM) and the CDM Professional Association (APCDM) in really hard times for Catalan healthcare, with cuts and readjustments in many doctors’ working conditions. During this period, Dr. Molina was a passionate defender of his colleagues to ensure that these changes were minimal, consensual and fair. For new members of CDM and APCDM, he was a master and role model in collective bargaining.
On a personal level, his colleagues describe him as a fierce advocate of leadership and the ability of doctors to organise and self-manage for the improvement of healthcare across the country. Also as a mentor, who welcomed and counselled many colleagues seeking understanding and help when working conditions were not the best. And as a great colleague who in many cases was faced with situations he believed to be unfair, even when this affected his personal and professional life.
Despite the fact that Dr. Rafael Molina passed away on 26 July 2020, the Spanish Society of Laboratory Medicine pays tribute to all his achievements with this award from the Scientific Committee.