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The future of the European Association of Cardiovascular Imaging

by Bogdan Alexandru Popescu, EACVI President 2016–2018, and Prof. of Cardiology, University of Medicine and Pharmacy ‘Carol Davila’, Bucharest, Romania

I believe that the main mission of the European Association of Cardiovascular Imaging (EACVI) is to provide excellent education to its members and to a worldwide audience. In this regard, we will work on developing innovative educational materials that complement conventional education and allow people from a wider audience to benefit from the experience of the EACVI.

Multimodal education

We would like to cover both the standard and advanced educational needs of all the imaging modalities, from focused echocardiography to high-end advanced imaging systems, and provide education for the multimodality imager. The aim therefore should be to organize multimodality imaging courses, centred on a specific clinical scenario and involving colleagues from all the EACVI sections. We foresee the organization of a large multimodality EACVI congress in future. Education is also aimed at certifying that an individual who will undertake a specific type of training is able to perform and accurately interpret imaging studies. We will therefore link educational products with the increase in certification exams and, in doing so, cover all four imaging modalities by the end of 2018. Thus, we would like to develop certification in nuclear cardiology next year, as well as hopefully in cardiac computed tomography in 2018.

We will develop a comprehensive program dedicated to focused echocardiography in collaboration with other relevant scientific societies, to meet the increasing need for this type of examination. Echocardiography is increasingly undertaken by non-cardiologists at the point of care, and we need to provide education to ensure that it is used properly.

We also need to discuss the educational requirements of the cardiovascular imager, and to link this to developing certification in cardiovascular imaging in the coming years.

Collaborative research projects

Research is one of the major components of the EACVI mission, and we would like to strengthen the collaboration between the EACVI, the national societies, and the other associations of the ESC. To those ends, we would like to develop cross collaborative research projects on specific clinical scenarios. We also need to standardize the use of newer imaging techniques to provide reference values for clinically relevant parameters. For this, we would like to involve nonphysicians, such as engineers and physicists, as the technical developments are extremely fast, and we need to incorporate those and hopefully innovate in the field of imaging.

Lastly, we need to define proper imaging diagnostic pathways in different clinical scenarios. We should use the imaging modality that is most relevant to the specific patient and not simply focus on the technique that we know how to use.

A society that belongs to its members

The link we have with the national societies is very important, because the association belongs to its members. We therefore need to work for them to provide what they require. In this regard, cooperative projects such as the multicentre European registries are very important because they offer further insights into what is happening in every country in terms of how scientific recommendations can be applied locally and how this can be improved.

During the recent EACVI Summits a need for increased awareness among members of the benefits of becoming an EACVI member were identified. Improved communication with the national societies to ascertain the needs of their representatives, to showcase what is available, and what is of benefit for their members. I am very honoured to work together with great scientists on the EACVI Board, sections and committees in order to achieve these aims.