Alliance for MRI Press Release - not a COCIR Release

ALLIANCE FOR MRI

PRESS RELEASE

Alliance for MRI welcomes publication of new scientific evidence and European Commission's willingness to amend the EU Physical Agents Directive (EMF)

15 June 2007

For immediate use

The Alliance for MRI welcomes the publication of the new study by Professor Stuart Crozier. This vindicates the concerns raised by the Alliance on the impact of the EU Physical Agents Directive (EMF) 2004/40/EC on the use of MRI. The Alliance also welcomes the European Commission's willingness to propose an amendment to the  Directive.

The Crozier report, published yesterday, demonstrates that changes to existing practice would not be sufficient to comply with Directive 2004/40/EC and so the use of current equipment and procedures would need to stop.

In response to these findings, Commissioner Vladimir Špidla, the Employment and Social Affairs Commissioner, said that the Commission will now analyse the results from the Crozier study.

At a lunched hosted at the European Parliament, there was consensus on the need to find a solution that is reasonable and ensures public health and worker safety. The Commission has said that it would be open to proposing a legislative amendment.

Professor Gabriel Krestin, professor and chairman of the Department of Radiology at  Erasmus University said: "The acknowledgement by the European Commission that there is a need for a legislative amendment is a step in the right direction. However a delay in implementation still leaves public institutions such as hospitals and research institutes with no legal certainty. This has serious implications for investment in MRI, which is central to patient care in Europe. I do not see how the Commission can address the threat to the future of MRI without proposing an EU-wide derogation for MRI from the scope of the Directive on public health grounds."

Mary Baker, President of EFNA (European Federation of Neurological Associations) said "Given that we know this Directive has already been implemented in Slovakia,  I would like the Commission to clarify what the implications are for patients in this country."

Contact details:
Ms Monika Hierat
European Society of Radiology - ESR
ESR Office: Neutorgasse 9, AT-1010 Vienna
phone: +43-1-5334064-0, ext. -20
mailto:monika.hierath@myESR.org

Background to the Alliance for MRI
The 'Alliance for MRI' is a coalition of European Parliamentarians, patient groups, leading European scientists and the medical community, who together are seeking to avert the serious threat posed by EU health and safety legislation to the clinical and research use of Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI).

The Alliance is supported by: 23 MEPs
Jan Andersson, (PES) SE, John Bowis (EPP/ED) UK, Philip Bushill Matthews, (EPP/ED)UK, Harald Ettl (PES) AT, Frédérique Ries (ALDE) BE, Robert Goebbels, (PES) LU, Stephen Hughes, (PES) UK, Ville Itälä (EPP/ED) FI, Anneli Jäätteenmäki, (ALDE) FI,Karin Joens (PES) DE, Piia-Noora Kauppi, (EPP/ED) FI, Eija-Riitta Korhola, (EPP/ED) FI, Elizabeth Lynne, (ALDE) UK, Jules Maaten, (ALDE) NL, Linda McAvan (PES)UK, Dr Angelika Niebler (EPP/ED) DE, Ria Oomen-Ruijten,
(EPP/ED) NL, Antonio Panzeri Pier, (PES) IT, Jean Spautz, (EPP/ED) LU, Hannes Swoboda (PES) AT (Founding member), Thomas Ulmer (EPP/ED) DE , Anne Van Lancker (PES) BE, Dr Anja Weisgerber (EPP/ED) DE

European and National patient groups
European Federation of Neurological Associations (Founding member); including the European Parkinson's Disease Association, The European MS Platform and the European Headache Alliance, The European Heart Network, Europa Donna, The European Patients Platform, The International Diabetes Federation - Europe, Alzheimer Europe, The WHO Collaborative Centre for Research, training and treatment in Epilepsy, The Austrian Lung Association, The Austrian Epilepsy Association, Werkgroep Hersentumoren vzw (Belgian Brain Tumour Group), Epilepsy Centres of the Netherlands
Foundation: SEIN

Representative Groups of Scientists
-       European Society of Radiology 
-       European Union of Medical Specialists 
-       European Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine and Biology (ESMRMB)
-       European Brain Council
-       Luxembourg Medical Council

In addition, a number of individual scientists and patient group representatives have signed up to the Alliance.

Further information is available at http://allianceformri.org

 

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