EULAR (European League Against Rheumatism) is the largest European association for rheumatology with 45 nations as members. The association is responsible for coordinating international efforts in the fields of care of rheumatology patients, education and research. It is an international network that is linked to the European Parliament and other decision-making bodies.
Professor Zoltán Szekanecz, Head of the Department of Rheumatology, UD, was formerly a member of the Academic Committee of EULAR. In 2019 he was elected secretary general of the organisation and a couple of days ago he became one of the three vice presidents of the organisation transformed this year. The Debrecen professor is in charge of the vice presidency responsible for national associations.
„My main aim was to build networks and strengthen the already existing international relationships already as a secretary, which is even more important now as a vice president. There are tangible differences between the member states in terms of patient care, research potential, tenders won, activity at EULAR conferences, and participation in EULAR committees. I consider it my priority to map the potential of the 45 countries as well as lobbying and organisation to reduce existing geographical and other inequalities. It is my declared task to strengthen the representation of ten Central and Eastern European region. Reduction of heterogeneity affects all three pillars of networking targeting each and every member state, hence I am indirectly responsible for health workers and patient organisations, too, Zoltán Szekanecz told hirek.unideb.hu.
The appointment of the Professor of the University of Debrecen as vice president is for two years and renewable once, and as vice president he is member of the Board of EULAR and several other committees. Zoltán Szekanecz, who is also president of the Hungarian Association of Rheumatologists, believes that, through his new position, he will be able to strengthen the position of Hungary, too, in the international association.
Photo: Fülöp Máté