COCIR and EFOMP partners in training initiative on Treatment Planning Systems

YORK/BRUSSELS – 03 December 2019 - 90 Medical Physicists, working in hospitals as well as in the industry sector, gathered in Warsaw to attend the two and a half days EFOMP - COCIR Autumn School on Treatment Planning Systems (TPS), also endorsed by ESTRO.
The cooperation between COCIR and EFOMP started in 2017, when discussions under the umbrella of HERCA, the European Association of Radiation Safety Authorities, pointed out the need for a closed cooperation between manufacturers and medical physicists to increase the awareness of features of medical devices related to imaging, treatment and radiation protection.
"The Memorandum of Understanding recently written helps to explain the existing and ongoing cooperation between EFOMP and COCIR and the relevant aspect  which emerges is  the opportunity to cooperate in the advanced courses of Physics applied to medicine. In the last three courses (course n. 15, 14, 9) this has been achieved thanks to the professional contribution of scientists from different Companies  who have participated in all phases of the courses in an important interdisciplinary interaction" stated Alberto Torresin, chair of the EFOMP school.

The Autumn School was organised in collaboration with the Polish Association of Medical Physicists.
The participants hailed all the way from Austria, Albania, Belgium, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Cyprus, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Finland, Greece, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Lithuania, Netherlands, Portugal, Poland, Republic of Moldova, Romania, Russia Federation, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Spain, Sweden, Slovenia, Switzerland, Turkey, UK and Ukraine.

Lecturers were Medical Physics Experts selected by EFOMP and industry experts identified by COCIR, representing the following Companies:  Accuray, Elekta, RaySearch laboratories, Varian and Philips.

The TPS course provided insights and information on the beam data requirements and quality assurance of a TPS, the theoretical foundation of the dose calculations and optimisation approaches, and the use of imaging in both pre-treatment and on treatment processes related to TPS. During the event, lecturers introduced industry perspectives on the practical implementation of these approaches, together with the tests the vendor perform prior to user input. Emerging developments in automated treatment planning together with biological optimisation and evaluation tools were discussed with both Company lecturers and Medical Physics Experts.

Industry lecturers showed a great appreciation for the initiative. Not only it gave them the opportunity to present the latest innovations and solutions but also the could get useful feedbacks from users.
“This course presented a great opportunity to interface with a diverse group of users. It was great to see the novel approaches different customers are using to solve their specific problems. There were definitely some important lessons I was able to bring back to the company and have already seen discussion regarding how to implement new features.” said Dolan James from Elekta, at the end of the event.

Eleonora Lanzi from Varian added: “The opportunity given to companies has allowed me to raise questions and discussions that have lasted well beyond the presentation. I returned home with a wealth of reports and new inputs.  Very positive experience.”
Gloria Miori from Raysearch laboratories concluded: “I found the event an interesting course with many Medical Physicists attending from different countries. This was interesting from the manufacturer’s view to make the products and the Company known“

To continue on the successful series, a new EFOMP-COCIR- ESMIT school on 'Innovation in technology in Nuclear Medicine' will be organised in January 2020 in Prague.  Online registration is now open and is accessible on this webpage.

COCIR is the European Trade Association representing the medical imaging, radiotherapy, health ICT and electromedical industries. Founded in 1959, COCIR is a non-profit association headquartered in Brussels (Belgium) with a China Desk based in Beijing since 2007. COCIR is unique as it brings together the healthcare, IT and telecommunications industries.

The European Federation of Organisations for Medical Physics (EFOMP) was founded in May 1980 in London to serve as an umbrella organisation for all NMOs (National Member Organisations). The current membership covers 34 national organisations which together represent more than 9000 medical physicists and clinical engineers working in the field of medical physics.

For more information, contact:

Nicole Denjoy  
COCIR Secretary General         
Tel: +32 (0)2 706 8961

Colin Mackay
COCIR Communications Senior Advisor
Tel: +32 (0) 473 43 07 52

Jaroslav Ptacek
EFOMP Secretary General

Efi Koutsouveli
EFOMP Internet Manager