Keep ultrasound close and generate added value, Lubinus advises
Professor Federico G. Lubinus is full professor of radiology and director of the radiology residency programme at the autonomous university of Bucaramanga (UNAB) in Colombia. He is one of the leaders in South American radiology and he believes that bringing back ultrasound to the heart of radiological practice is key to the future growth of the specialty. His efforts will be acknowledged today as he receives ESR Honorary Membership.
When it comes to radiology, South America has very similar challenges to the rest of the world and a number of regional trends, Lubinus explained. “Big workloads, turf battles with other medical specialties, and challenges imposed by teleradiology and artificial intelligence are some of the many difficulties we have to deal with, not only as radiological societies but also as radiologists wondering about the role of the specialty in the near future,” he said.
But radiology practice in the continent is uneven and a major difference concerns radiology training, according to Lubinus, who currently heads the Latin American Educational Forum, a group that brings together radiological societies of South America to develop and advance educational issues in the region. “Training is dependent on the regulations of each country. There is great diversity both in the number of years of study required to be a specialist and in the minimum requirements demanded in each country, which makes it difficult to standardise programmes and perform appropriate evaluation of knowledge,” said Lubinus.
Lubinus is also director of the scientific committee of the Asociación Colombiana de Radiología (ACR), a society he served twice as president. Under his aegis, the ACR worked to have a standardised training programme, a tool that is now recognised by the Colombian ministry of education as the basis for evaluation and certification of radiology graduates, and radiologists who have received their certification abroad.
For the past four years, the Latin American Education Forum has also engaged in developing a standardised academic residency programme as a reference instrument for the validation of qualifications of Latin American radiologists, to improve the much needed certification and recertification in radiology.