The European Association of Echocardiography (EAE) was founded in 2003 and led by its first president, Professor Fausto Pinto.
Since its start, EAE pioneered many initiatives
to support its mission, strengthen its brand and improve attractiveness among European echocardiographers. EAE organised an annual meeting (EUROECHO), which has become one of the largest echo congresses in the world hosting more than 3 600 delegates in its 2011 edition.
Since 2003, EAE has run the most successful website
among the five European Society of Cardiology (ESC) Associations welcoming around 20 000 visits per month. The website hosts also an online educational platform
consulted by 4 000 colleagues per month. In 2004, EAE launched the schemes for individual certification and, in 2007, the laboratory accreditation
which have accredited 800 echocardiographers and 26 laboratories so far.
These achievements created such added-value to EAE that nearly 3 000 echocardiographers from all over the world have become Members of the Association. Today, the Association has a strong and well recognised brand, a diversified educational portfolio and has established solid international relationships with the main echocardiographic organisations around the world.
Despite this success story, EAE Board Members 2008-2010 realised that, due to the changing health and economic scenario and new diagnostic needs for both patients and physicians, the Association needed to adapt. Accordingly, Professor Zamorano and his Board Members started to consider changing the EAE scope and mission and move from a pure echo Association to an Association addressing patients’ needs.
Therefore, one of the main aims of the EAE Board 2010-2012 has been to promote the evolution from the EAE to the European Association of Cardiovascular Imaging (EACVI)
In order to achieve this goal and ensure a broad consensus of imaging experts within the ESC, the EAE Board secured the involvement of the ESC Working Group on Nuclear Cardiology & Cardiac Computed Tomography and the ESC Working Group on Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance in this process, with the clear goals to
- Test all cardiovascular imaging modalities alone and in association to find the most cost-effective combinations for any single cardiovascular disease;
- Provide a broader education scheme in cardiovascular imaging;
- Prepare recommendation documents that address how to deal with a disease and not about one or another imaging technique;
Help the ESC Congress Programme Committee and the Committee for Practice Guidelines to organise congress sessions and documents taking into account the appropriateness of each imaging modality in relation to their respective cost-effective diagnostic value.
To support these goals, the scope of the European Journal of Echocardiography (EJE) was broadened to include other imaging modalities, renamed to European Heart Journal - Cardiovascular Imaging (EHJ-CI) and the editorial board extended to include experts in Nuclear Cardiology, Cardiac Computed Tomography and Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance. In addition, the scope of EUROECHO was broadened in close collaboration with the two imaging working groups, to become EUROECHO & other Imaging Modalities. By creating a big imaging journal and an outstanding meeting, which involve other modalities, changing the name of the Association seemed to be a natural evolution.
On 22 June 2012 the ESC Board approved the Association’s name change from EAE to EACVI. EAE has therefore finalised its evolution from a very successful Association mainly dealing with a diagnostic technique to a new Association whose mission will be to address clinicians' and patients' diagnostic needs in the broader field of non-invasive cardiovascular imaging. EACVI is a collaboration of the former EAE, the ESC Working Group on Nuclear Cardiology & Cardiac Computed Tomography and the ESC Working Group on Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance.