President’s NL 2 – 2009


EACTA: an International Association with strong links with the other Scientific Societies

photo-marco_ranucci_leftCardiothoracic Anestesia and Intensive Care is a specialty which, due to its nature, is linked to many other Specialties. Of course it’s clear for everyone that our daily practice is strongly interacting with Cardiothoracic Surgery, Cardiology, General Anesthesia, Extracorporeal Circulation Technologies.

In recent years, EACTA has started a process aimed to create a formal link with the other Scientific Associations operating in the areas that are closely related to our daily practice and scientific activity. The present scenario is highly productive, and the following relationships have been already established.


The first co-operation being established is the one with the European Society of Cardiology and namely with the branch of European Association of Echocardiography. Since the beginning of the new century, EACTA and the EAE have been developing a joint program for an European Accreditation in Transesophageal Echocardiograpy (TEE). Through the efforts of a joint EAE-EACTA committee, we have developed the European examination in TEE, and the consequent achievement of an European Certification released by the 2 societies after completion of a practical training. The first examination took place in Montpellier in 2005, and from that time the examination is taking place twice per year, at the Euroecho in December and at the EACTA meeting in May-June. This program has been highly successful and the examination is always very well attended.

Simultaneously, EACTA started the organization of its own Echo Course with an yearly event usually taking place in September: the first one was in Uppsala in 2002, followed by London, Bergamo, Zurich, Loipersdorf, Copenhagen, Rome and Leicester in 2009. This last event had the highest number of delegates, close to 200.


The first contacts between the two societies were established in 2007, in a meeting held in Milan between the two presidents (Paul Sergeant and Marco Ranucci). Subsequently, the relationship between EACTA and EACTS was officially ratified and led to the organization of joint sessions at the EACTA and EACTS meetings. In Athens 2009 we had a joint scientific session on transcatheter valves, and in Vienna 2009, at the EACTS meeting, there is a joint session on the treatment of the elderly surgical patient.


In Berlin 2008 the ICCVA meeting was organized jointly by EACTA and the American SCA. During the meeting, it was decided by EACTA and SCA representatives to start a common pathway for a joint organization of the future ICCVA meetings.

In 2009 it was decided by the ruling bodies of the two societies to include an EACTA representative within the SCA board and a SCA representative within the EACTA board. Pascal Colson will represent EACTA in the next winter meeting of SCA.


The first official contacts started about 5 years ago, when the two societies decided to design the Guidelines for Accreditation of Training Programs in Cardiothoracic and Vascular Anesthesia and ICU.

A joint document was approved, tracing the requirements for Institutions willing to offer a training program in our specialty.

This program became reality in 2008, when the first Institution, in Leipzig, received the EACTA accreditation of its training program. We have recently received the information that the program is actively running, with 5 fellows coming from India, Saudi Arabia, and Egypt.

A second Institution (Southampton) is presently close to receive the EACTA accreditation, and we encourage other Institutions to apply for this important initiative.

Very recently, the ESA expressed the will to create a subgroup of Specialty Societies within its board. EACTA agreed to participate in this project, and will be represented by Marco Ranucci


Since the early days EACTA is expressing a representative within the EBCP board. It was Roland Demeyere for many years, and since the last 3 years the place is covered by Jouko Jalonen, that was recently confirmed for this position.

In conclusion, it’s my great satisfaction having promoted all these co-operation with relevant societies that certainly will improve the quality of scientific communication within our domain. I can only support the idea of having common fields of interest finding a common fields of scientific co-operation

Marco Ranucci
EACTA President

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