The ESR and CIRSE join forces to promote patient care

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The European Society of Radiology (ESR) and the Cardiovascular and Interventional Radiological Society of Europe (CIRSE), have joined forces to address the future of diagnostic and interventional radiology with a special focus on improving patient care.

The decision to enhance collaboration was taken in a meeting between the leaderships of both societies in July 2016. The first step will be a joint survey on the state of the art and current practice of interventional and diagnostic radiology with the aim to identify synergies and ultimately optimise patient care. The questionnaire is planned to be sent out in early 2017.

“This partnership intends to fortify the position of diagnostic and interventional radiology and to attract more clinically oriented medical students to radiology. We want to support medical students and radiology residents in their ambitions to become interventional radiologists or radiologists with a special focus and experience in interventional radiology and we want to shape future training models to make sure that our future colleagues embrace clinical responsibilities and feel comfortable to pursue the clinical management of patients. Last but not least, we should concentrate on establishing and improving functioning referral routines in hospitals, which could prove very valuable for both interventional and diagnostic radiology,” said Elias Brountzos, current CIRSE president.

One of the ESR’s successful projects in the field of education is the establishment of the European Training Curriculum for Radiology, designed to provide a valuable template for training radiologists and enhance the quality of care for patients throughout Europe. The ESR has added further clinical and patient-care related aspects of interventional radiology to its Curriculum for Undergraduate Radiological Education and will include an update of CIRSE’s input in its subspecialisation curriculum. Revised versions of both curricula will be released on the ESR website on the occasion of ECR 2017.

In 2013, CIRSE has established the first edition of the European Curriculum and Syllabus for Interventional Radiology. This document, which provides guidance for radiologists wishing to specialise in IR (www.cirse.org), is currently being updated and the second edition will be released in early 2017. The European Curriculum and Syllabus for Interventional Radiology is the blueprint for the European Board of Interventional Radiology (EBIR), a certificate of competence, providing a benchmark for European Interventional Radiology practice, which is officially endorsed by the ESR.

“CIRSE is at present involved in the ESR’s annual congress (ECR), which is reflected by a broad selection of interventional and vascular radiology sessions, in the European Diploma in Radiology (EDiR – an initiative of the ESR dedicated to continued education and certification for general and sub-specialised radiologists), ESR’s EU and International Affairs, in EuroSafe Imaging, the ESR’s quality and safety campaign, as well as the European Institute for Biomedical Imaging Research (EIBIR). I believe that the increased commitment of both societies will greatly benefit patient care and the radiological community,” said Katrine Riklund, chairperson of the ESR Board of Directors, from Umeå, Sweden.

Future plans include increased collaboration with the ESR’s EU and International Affairs department, as well as joint courses and society booths at major radiology events to further communicate that diagnostic and interventional radiology belong together. The ESR and CIRSE will work together on strategic issues to promote the subspecialty of interventional radiology, and will meet on a regular basis to improve communication and further deepen their ties.

Furthermore, CIRSE’s application to become a member of the European CanCer Organisation (ECCO) was fully supported by the ESR, which joined ECCO in May 2016. ECCO is a multidisciplinary federation which upholds the right of all European cancer patients to the best possible treatment and care, promoting interaction between all organisations involved in cancer care at the European level.