Zoom On: Bernd Hamm, President, European Society of Radiology (2018)

Zoom On: Bernd Hamm, President, European Society of Radiology (2018)
At the crossroads of life there are no signposts
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We look back at a brief interview with European Society of Radiology President, Prof. Bernd Hamm, when he was President of the European Congress of Radiology in 2015.

As Vienna prepares to welcome the European Congress of Radiology, we Zoom On Prof. Bernd Hamm, 2015 ECR President. Prof. Hamm proudly presents ECR with the motto, “Radiology without Borders”. He notes that what also makes ECR 2015 special is the 10th anniversary of the European Society of Radiology. In addition, ECR 2015 includes the session categories restructured according to the European Training Curriculum for Radiology.

Prof. Hamm is Professor of Radiology and Chairman of all three merged departments of radiology at the Charité, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin and Freie Universität (Campus Mitte, Campus Virchow-Klinikum, and Campus Benjamin Franklin). He is  clinical director of four outpatient service facilities in nuclear medicine and radiology at the Charité, as well as scientific and clinical chairman of three imaging centres in Berlin.

We put our 7 questions to Prof. Hamm.

1. What are your key areas of interest and research?
An important professional focus of my activities is on supporting and promoting radiology at a European level, which includes defining the changing role of radiology and shaping its position in the interaction of the different clinical specialties. These activities also involve my participation in advancing and improving the training curriculum for radiologists in Germany in cooperation with the German Society of Radiology. My key scientific interests are abdominal and genitourinary imaging, in
particular the detection and characterisation of liver tumors and the diagnosis of malignant uterine tumors, and, more recently, MR diagnosis of prostate cancer. Other fields I am interested in include molecular imaging in the early detection of atherosclerosis and the development of new drug-eluting balloon catheters.

2. What are the major challenges in your field?
Radiology is currently one of the medical specialties with the most dynamic development and the most breathtaking innovations. This makes it so
interesting to be a radiologist but also puts us under an obligation to
tackle the challenges and always keep pace with our dynamic field. It is my
hope for the future of our specialty that its different subspecialties will
continue to be united under the common roof of radiology. This is important
in order not to weaken the position of radiology. At the same time, we must
not slacken in our efforts to further improve and advance radiological
diagnosis and patient treatment from our perspective.

3. What is your top management tip?
The management of a huge radiology department is becoming more and more
complex and one may be tempted to only think in numbers. However, what is
most important is to have motivated staff willing to provide empathetic medical care to the benefit of our patients and continuing to be curious to do good research. Otherwise, my guiding motto is from football: "You must succeed at home first before you can start dreaming about playing Champions League". Applied to radiology, this means that one must first show a good performance in organising one's own department and other activities on a local level before one can get involved in international professional activities and expect to succeed there.

4. What would you single out as a career highlight?
It is hard for me to single out one particular career highlight. Rather, it is a succession of small and bigger accomplishments, which provide support and motivation to carry on. In addition, one must not get discouraged when things do not turn out as expected. Rather, one should take a defeat as an additional incentive to carry on, develop new ideas, and start other projects.

5. If you had not chosen this career path you would have become a.?
When I started my career I wanted to become a radiologist in private practice. I was far from imagining that I would one day be a Professor and Chair of a large University Department of Radiology.

6. What are your personal interests outside of work?
Skiing and sailing, whenever my time permits. Beyond that we enjoy the diverse cultural life of Berlin.

7. Your favourite quote?
One of my favourite quotes is from Charlie Chaplin: "At the crossroads of
life there are no signposts."

Prof. Hamm has been actively involved in the radiology profession in a number of roles. He served as President of the German Society of Radiology from 2003 until 2005, and since 2005  has been Editor of the German radiological journal RöFo - Fortschritte auf dem Gebiet der Röntgenstrahlen und der neuen bildgebenden Verfahren. From 2008 until 2010 he was President of the European Society of Urogenital Radiology (ESUR). In 2011 he was President of the 92nd German Congress of Radiology / 6th Joint Congress of the German and Austrian Societies of Radiology. In 2012 he was awarded Honorary Professorship of the China-Japan Friendship Hospital, Beijing. He has published 560 original articles, 87 review articles and editorials and 11 books. He has presented more than 500 lectures, including refresher courses at ECR and RSNA. As well as ESR and ESUR, he is a member of the Deutsche Akademie der Naturforscher Leopoldina (German Academy of Science), German Society of Radiology (DRG), German University Association,
the European Society of Gastrointestinal and Abdominal Radiology (ESGAR), the
European Society of Magnetic Resonance in Medicine and Biology (ESMRMB), the
Radiological Society of North America (RSNA). He is an Honorary Member of the national radiological societies of Austria, Japan and Switzerland.

Professor Hamm has been very closely involved with the European Congress of Radiology (ECR) since 2002, when he first joined the Programme Planning Committee. Since then he has been a regular member of the committee, coordinating Categorical Courses and serving as chairman of the Scientific Exhibition Committee, the Scientific Papers Committee, and the ECR 2013 Postgraduate Educational Programme Committee.

Bernd Hamm: My favourite thing about the ECR

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Published on : Tue, 17 Feb 2015

We look back at a brief interview with European Society of Radiology President, Prof. Bernd Hamm, when he was President of the European Congress of Radiolo

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