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Q&A with ECR President, Michael Fuchsjäger

by Sean Ruck, Contributing Editor | March 03, 2021
Business Affairs European News

HCB News: What are your goals when you assume the position of Chairman of the Board of Directors?
MF: As we are still dealing with the pandemic, this issue will dominate our agenda for some time. As for the scientific societies, a lot is going to change due to the “new reality” we have to adjust to. This also means that we have to work to maintain our sustainability as an organization.

Apart from overcoming the COVID situation, we are always running many initiatives and projects, for instance, the European School of Radiology, a long-standing section of the organisation that provides year-round teaching through numerous online and face-to-face events. These take place throughout the world and are aimed at professionals from many different subspecialties with different levels of knowledge and experience.

We are also responsible for the EuroSafe Imaging campaign, one of the ESR’s flagship initiatives to promote quality and safety in medical imaging. The mission of EuroSafe Imaging is to support and strengthen medical radiation protection across Europe following a holistic, inclusive approach.

Even before the pandemic, I started to take the initiative to focus on our own wellbeing as healthcare professionals. There will be an advanced course at ECR 2021 focusing on wellbeing, as I strongly believe that we can only serve our patients best if we first look after ourselves.

HCB News: Are there efforts on the ESR side to make sure the society can remain strong the next time something like the pandemic occurs?
MF: Of course. We are learning this experience continuously. We also develop standards and procedures on how to deal with this “new reality.” In this evolving process, the ESR came up with many resources to help radiologists and radiological departments, from realizing that there is a pandemic to strategizing and implementing measures into our daily work.

We still do not have an all-solving long-term recipe for overcoming this situation, but what we can see with the three scientific journals offered through our society, is that many of the submissions we receive are focused on COVID-19. We gain a lot of knowledge by focusing on COVID-19, knowledge we can build on.

HCB News: Who should consider joining the society and why?
MF: The ESR is a society that embraces radiologists and radiographers from all over the world. In fact, only one-third of our members are from within Europe. The ECR is also the largest congress for radiographers, with the European Federation of Radiographer Societies (EFRS) working in collaboration with us and using the ECR, also as their own annual meeting. All professionals from the life sciences, for instance, physicists and other medical specialists are also welcome in our society.

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