Salome Coelho 2018-2020
I had the privilege to join the EAPCI NAP Committee in 2014. I was invited due to be aware of Professor Lino Gonçalves’ work with ESCeL Platform development and operationalization. I was so excited with that platform seen as an online specialization course for physicians training and performing in hemodynamics, that I could dream of one similar for us, Nurses and Allied Professionals!
Times where percutaneous procedures are diverse and more complex, are demanding and challenging also for NAPs and require a lot of differentiated and updated knowledge and training. To deliver a high standard of care to our patients, NAPs must be experts, specialists, certified. Evidence-based investments in nursing education are associated with reduction in hospital deaths1 and many studies has been relating specialty nurse certification with better patient, nursing and organizational outcomes2.
Following that ESC and EAPCI logic, a Core Curriculum should be firstly built to be used the basis of NAPs education and training programs, as a learning framework to guide continuing professional education and post-qualifying NAPs working in cardiovascular settings. We did some surveys and we knew that it was a challenge with so great heterogeneity in NAPs education and training programs, across European countries, many with few or none in interventional cardiology. But most of all, our community desired a core curriculum, an online course, an exam certification and other resources.
Firstly, the group, chaired by Lene Klovgaard, cared about approaching different realities and how to overcome them and focused on writing the Core Curriculum, so it could be adapted in national contexts, in their training programs on hemodynamics, and at the European level in case on an online course or exam. It was two years of great motivation, work and experience from my personal perspective that culminated with its publication in Eurointervention journal.
Next mandate (2016-2018), with David Sparv chairing and me as his co-chair, enable me to learn a lot not only as doer but, mainly, co-responsible for the committee’s work and for the bridge with the EAPCI Board. I must thank Lene and David for their precious support. Our project, our goal was to keep in line with the Core Curriculum done before by creating an online course based on it, like ESCeL platform. We did all due diligence for that purpose but, unfortunately, it was not possible as the platform was being deactivated for physicians. Therefore, we changed the goal for a European certification exam, also in line with the work in other ESC Associations for NAPs. So, we started the process with some initial and important steps in a long pathway of two years for the exam creation, by the group, and coordinated by Lynne Hinterbuchner.
Therefore, as chair, I had the honor of launching the exam certification’s first edition and must thank to all group and particularly to Lynne, and also to the EAPCI Board (initially, to Prof. Michael Haude and after, Prof. Andreas Baumbach). A big thank you to Marielle de la Torre too. We should have had the second edition this year, and had all prepared, but then covid-19 spoiled the party. We hope to hold an exam next year.
In the history of NAP Committee (since 2006) and in my 6 years of its history, there have been a lot of achievements, since the beginnings of EuroPCR’s NAP program, many people have collaborated from a variety of countries and professions. It’s almost an invisible effort, mas very valuable and indispensable, team work. Members are replaced but their contributions remained in a continuous process. And I feel fulfilled for being one more contributor in the vision.
David Sparv 2016-2018
For me, the EAPCI and EuroPCR has been associated with almost endless opportunities, and I am very humble for the possibilities this has provided me with. I started working in the cardiac intensive care unit and the coronary catheterization laboratory in 2001, in the transition period from thrombolytic therapy to primary PCI. Working in this highly dynamic environment over the perhaps most innovative and creative years of cardiac intervention, triggered several ideas of potential improvements.
When I was appointed the head of the cathlab in 2007, one of the first possibilities that was offered me was to attend the EuroPCR conference, an almost mythical conference that our physicians went to every year. I remember being a little overwhelmed, but very soon got a notion to contribute, to be part of this amazing program. Therefore, I decided to submit an abstract in 2011, that was accepted and presented in the nurses and allied professionals program. It was indeed intimidating, but due to the kind connection prior to the conference from the chair of the session, and also the very warm environment in the NAP program onsite, it was a very exiting experience that certainly inspired me to come back.
When the new committee was formed in the fall of 2013, and the EAPCI NAP committee formed in 2014, this was a start of a journey that has provided me with clinical knowledge, scientific development that eventually rendered a PhD and also a broad experience of working in an organisation fashion in an European environment.
When I look back of my years as a Co-Chair, Chair and Past-Chair, there are many things I feel proud of. I think the most important achievement was that we manage to organize the nurses and allies in a sustainable way, from scratch to a functional body of competence. This has certainly been an amazing journey with so many aspects, and lessons, and also colleagues and friends for life.
Lene Kloevgaard 2014-2016
EuroPCR (the official conference for EAPCI) and EAPCI have been my companions for years. In April 2014 Jean Fajadet in EuroIntervention announced the creation of a committee within the EAPCI community, dedicated for nurses and allied professionals (NAPs) in Europe. I had the great honor to become the first Chairperson in the EAPCI NAP committee. Together with Co-Chair David Sparv we established a great group of enthusiastic NAPs from all over Europe. We wanted to increase the professional profile of nurses and allied professionals in interventional cardiology, with the main purposes, to promote networking and to share knowledge among nurses and allied professionals. During my period as Chairperson, the committee succeeded in developing and publishing a training program, for NAPs: A Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory Core Curriculum. I am proud, - it was a milestone for NAPs in Europe. I am pleased also to mentioned, that in 2019 the first NAPs in Europe passed the exam and got a European certification as an advanced professional.
My first EuroPCR was in 1999 and it took place in a tent, next to the Eifel Tower. I have attended every EuroPCR meeting since. For those who do not know, the EuroPCR NAPs were around before EAPCI NAP committee was formed. If it wasn’t for the COVID 19, it would have been my 22 EuroPCR conference this year. I have enjoyed them all. In 2006 I was invited to do my first presentation. I was excited and very nervous, but everything went well. The year after, I became involved in the EuroPCR NAP program, which continued. Every year it has been important for me, to meet up with the abstract presenters before the session. Often, they are doing their first talk and for many in a foreign language, so it is good to have met and also to keep a nice and friendly atmosphere in the room.
I have followed how the program has developed over the years, and how all relevant topics for NAPs over the years have been covered. The planning process starts in September with a face to face planning meeting in October, where the preliminary program is born. Hundreds of emails later, inside and outside the planning group, the program for the next EuroPCR is ready. A program we deeply hope our colleagues from all over Europe and the rest of the world will find interesting and exciting every year.
Simultaneous to the program building, the submission site for NAP abstracts and clinical cases opens. This part of the program always has had and will have, my special interest. It is crucial for our group, beside the learning, education and training sessions, to also have a scientific platform, where we can obtain the latest research results from our area. This also gives researching NAPs the possibility to present their research and discuss it among colleagues. During the years, I have met lots of enthusiastic NAPs, presenting small and well performed studies, where the results have changed practice. This has made me very proud every year.
And to NAPs all over, please don’t hesitate to be curious. If you meet issues, in your daily practice, where evidence is missing, I will encourage you to investigate it. Clinical investigation is resulting in improvement in patient treatment and care. Huge randomised trials are the “gold standard”, but a smaller study is also important. Evidence enables us to move from: “I think” to “we know” because we have evidence for it, from the literature.
EAPCI and EuroPCR have been my companion for many years and have given me so much inspiration, friends, fun and good memories. My time on the EAPCI committee has ended though this year 2020 after 6 years of service. Now it is time for me, to step down and make room for new colleagues. Thank you to all I have met during the years and welcome to new.