The future of urology in Europe: an overview from the European association of urology.
SourceEuropean Urology, 39, 4, (2001), pp. 361--8
Article / Letter to editor
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SubjectUrological oncology; Urologische oncologie
INTRODUCTION: In order to be able to influence and monitor future developments for urologists, strategies should be promoted in advance to guarantee the future of the speciality and to accommodate the inevitable changes. Faced with this challenge, the EAU, through its Strategy Planning Office (SPO), has prepared a document which is offered, here, in abbreviated form, to the European and international urological communities for general consideration. MATERIAL AND METHODS: A group of subjects, related to the domains and internal consistency of urology as a speciality, were selected and discussed among the members of the SPO and later submitted to open consultation among distinguished members of the urological community. The topics selected for discussion included: what is urology; urology in the university; sub-specialization in urology; training in urology; does kidney transplantation belong to urology, and others. RESULTS: It is shown that urology is going through an exciting and hazardous transition period. Urology has conflicting problems in its traditional domains due to changes in health care policy, and internal identification problems due to its permanent expansion and sub-specialization options. Weaker points are its relation with primary care medicine (shared care options), the presence and role of urology in institutions such as the university, department of surgery, children's hospitals, administration, etc.; the desegregating effect of the sub-specialities; the increasing encroachment of other specialities, and the increasing outpatient effect of technological progress. CONCLUSION: An action plan is proposed to confront these changes without loosing manpower, internal consistency or social image and improving patient care quality, excellence of training and scientific progress.
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