The new campaign, which brings together many stakeholders, will strengthen medical radiation protection across Europe following a holistic approach, according to ESR President, Prof. Guy Frija from Paris, France. “The campaign focuses on promoting appropriateness in medical imaging, maintaining doses within diagnostic reference levels and emphasising the need to promote the use of up-to-date equipment,” he said.
The need to support the implementation of European Directives on medical radiation protection has never been greater than today with patient radiation exposure rising, according to the ESR’s Chairman of the Radiation Protection Subcommittee, Prof. Peter Vock from Spiegel, Switzerland. EuroSafe Imaging is a campaign designed to meet the needs of the present, he said. The purpose is to promote the appropriate and safe use of imaging, as well as the utilisation of features in dose efficient equipment, through cooperation with stakeholders to ensure a multidisciplinary and holistic approach to radiation protection.
EuroSafe Imaging is run by a steering committee, which is composed of delegates from the ESR, subspecialty societies, related medical professions, patient groups, and the industry, along with an observer from the European Commission. Patient groups play a key role in the campaign, as patient communication on radiation protection is one of its major objectives.
Last year, the ESR published a statement on radiation protection according to its global, safe and personal (GPS) approach, and a survey on paediatric CT practices in Europe, which is still open for participation. It also organised an orientation session on radiation protection for senior radiologists. In addition, a dedicated website, www.eurosafeimaging.org, was recently launched. Many activities will follow in 2014, including the development of training material and lists of criteria for safe radiological examinations, and the organisation of dedicated radiation protection sessions during subspecialty and national societies events.
“We believe that this holistic approach is an important step towards joining forces for patient safety in Europe. And we believe too that the use of up-to-date equipment is of utmost importance for improving the safety of x-rays examinations. The ESR urges the European Commission to develop a European plan for the improvement of x-ray equipment, including CT across Europe,” Prof. Frija said.
During ECR 2014, delegates will be able to visit the EuroSafe Imaging poster exhibition and attend the dedicated launch session, which will start Friday at 10:30. Individuals and organisations are actively encouraged to become ‘Friends of EuroSafe Imaging’ by signing up with the campaign online, and relevant information will be distributed at various locations within the congress venue to promote the campaign.