Over kinderen, hun psychische problemen, hun ouders en hun behandelaars.

Protecting the children of Europe

Child and adolescent psychiatrists in Europe have all the options. Yes, many of us are brilliant. I have met researchers from Estonia who are at anything less but at a World Top Level. I have seen that clinical training programs in Turkey have unique qualities that we should all learn from. The level of ethics and loyalty amongst our colleagues in Greece – now surviving extreme health care cuts – can be an example to any other European child psychiatrist in times of economic misery. Also the way the Portuguese manage to maintain their international trainee agenda against all odds seems very impressing to me. And I’m sure there are many more examples (please respond yours to this blog!).

Now let me voice my idealism. European child psychiatrists have the option to share knowledge and work together. ESCAP offers the platform for doing exactly that. The European Society for Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (ESCAP) has the ambition to provide a social and ideological framework that will enable all of us child and adolescent psychiatrists and researchers to cooperate in a very effective way.

Protecting the children of Europe

I am perhaps an idealist, but I am also realistically ambitious. This is how I know what I’m reaching for: protecting the children of Europe. Children with severe mental problems, wherever they are. We are here to help them. That is our role – and I am convinced that European cooperation is the only road. The ESCAP society could very quickly and efficiently enable us to share our knowledge on a European level. ESCAP could provide the social and ideological framework for real European cooperation between all child and adolescent psychiatrists involved. The ESCAP association should be defending the values we stand for. ESCAP is here to share and defend those values and go together in order to protect the children of Europe. What we want to offer is as simple as it is ambitious: to provide a social and ideological framework to be able to cooperate as child and adolescent psychiatrists and researchers.

Together we can make a difference

European Society for Child and Adolescent PsychiatryLet’s take advantage of those exceptional research talents in Estonia, let’s learn from the Turkish clinical training schedules, and let’s do something with the outstanding adaptive talents of Greek practitioners. And let us praise those young Portuguese students that have found a small budget to join our Dublin congress last July. Together we can make a difference. We could share and evaluate diagnost
ic tools – easy! We could build a significant evidence base together and even offer scientifically substantiated protocols for diagnostics and treatment. But moreover, here we can practice our sense of community and loyalty. I don’t fool myself by believing that research in our field will be able to survive at all on a national level.

As soon as we realize that everyone of us matters, whoever and wherever he or she is: every doctor, every researcher may contribute to an outstanding European cooperation. ESCAP is willing to provide the platform. Not only on congress days, but also during those two years in between. Take a look at www.escap-net.org for ways to get in touch with your European fellow experts. This website will more and more represent the ESCAP community and its exchange of knowledge.

Visit the new website: www.escap.eu

Stephan Eliez Over Stephan Eliez

Stephan Eliez is professor aan de Universiteit van Genève (School of Medicine), president-elect en bestuurslid van de European Society for Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (ESCAP).