WHO Western Pacific Meeting - Address by Mr Robert George, President of ISRRT
WPRO Meeting Jeju
Mr Chairman, Distinguished Representatives, Regional Director and Officers of WHO Regional Office, NGO Representatives and Observers, thank you for the opportunity to briefly address this meeting.
My name is Robert George and I have the privilege to be the President of the International Society of Radiographers and Radiological Technologist (ISRRT), which is the professional body representing Medical Imaging Technologists and Therapists world wide. We have 80 Member Societies representing over 75 Countries and 300,000 technologists across all regions of the World. We are officially recognised as an NGO by WHO and also have close working relationships with many International Societies including the International Atomic Energy Agency, the International Radiology Quality Network, the International Radiation Protection Association and the International Society of Radiologists.
As part of our work with WHO, we have been active members of the Global Steering Group for Diagnostic Imaging and Medical Devices under the guidance of the recently retired Co-ordinator, Dr Harald Ostensen. Our involvement has included contributing to Workshops and programmes related to Radiography in Africa, Central America and the
In the Western Pacific region, we were involved in, and financially supported a WHO Centre of Excellence project, where several technologists and x-ray operators from Fiji and several Pacific Island nations were trained in quality assurance and basic x-ray interpretation in short courses held at the Fiji School of Medicine over 3 years . In addition, we provided a technologist who visited
We have produced teaching texts for WHO on basic positioning and equipment maintenance, that have been widely distributed.
Our initiatives tie in closely with Strategic Objective 11 of the Medium-Term Strategic Plan, which relates to ensuring improved access, quality and use of Medical Technologies specifically Diagnostic Imaging. They also link to Objectives 1-5 related to evidence-based selection of technologies and development of clinical guidelines, patient safety and quality assurance. The Strategic Plan has already identified 12 Countries in the Region who may benefit from Strategic Objective 11 ISRRT is very willing to be a source of skill and expertise to any Region of WHO, in particular, the Western Pacific Region. I would be happy to talk with any country representatives if it is thought we can be of assistance.
Whilst our work is often directed at the basic skills in radiography, we are in the process of producing material on CT scanning to support a request from Technologists in
As you are no doubt aware, medical Imaging, even in its most basic forms of plain radiography and ultrasound, has played, and can continue to play, a significant role in the delivery of healthcare in the those areas and programs identified by WHO such as the Millennium Development Goals, the People at the Centre of Care initiative and the Western Pacific Region Strategic Plan 2008 2013.
We understand that continuation of the role and work of the Global Steering Group for Diagnostic Imaging and Medical Devices is presently under review, but the ISRRT together with the International Society of Radiologists and previous key contributors such as the Radiological Society of North America and the European Society of Radiologists are urging WHO to appoint a Radiologist to continue this important work.
There are undoubtedly many facets to improving Healthcare in this Region there is however no doubt that Radiography and Ultrasound can make a significant contribution in assisting WHO and others who are entrusted with the healthcare of our communities.
May I thank you for your attention and the opportunity to address this Meeting. I pledge the ongoing support of our Society to the work of WHO.
Robert George, President, International Society of Radiographers and Radiological Technologists