Name of group: GI group within the Medical Association of Malta
Number of active members: 15
Number of meetings per year: Not applicable
President: Stephen Fava
National Representative: Pierre Ellul
Joined ECCO in: 2016
2) Questions (based on input above)
What has changed since your society became an ECCO Country Member? What are the benefits to you of being an ECCO Country Member?
Over recent years, the fact that we have become an ECCO Country Member has enabled us to progress at both the clinical and the academic level. This has led to a lot of enthusiasm among the health-care professionals and with help from ECCO we have made significant strides forward. I think we can say that this has led to us to have IBD specialist nurses as well as pharmacists and dietitians with a special interest in IBD. Furthermore our gastroenterology trainees have benefitted from the IBD Course.
Is your society making use of the ECCO Guidelines?
Have you developed links with other countries through your ECCO Country Membership?
· Have you developed research projects with other countries through your ECCO Country Membership?
· Have you developed educational activities with other countries through your ECCO Country Membership?
· Has your country been involved in a fellow exchange through ECCO?
Over recent years, we have developed multiple links with other European countries at the clinical and academic levels. For example, we are currently undertaking research on the microbiome in collaboration with other ECCO Country Members.
What are your main areas of research interest?
Epidemiology and the microbiome
Does your centre or country have a common IBD database or bio bank?
We have developed an IBD database and in the coming months will be making use of the UR-CARE database. We also have a biobank for blood and stool samples.
What are your most prestigious/interesting past and ongoing projects?
We have been involved in various epidemiological projects. Currently we are working on the microbiome of patients with newly diagnosed IBD.
Which ECCO Projects/Activities is the group currently involved in?
Our group has been involved in different research projects among ECCO Country Members and has also been an active member of the Epi-IBD group.
What are your aims for the future? How do you see ECCO helping you to fulfil these aims?
What do you use ECCO for? Network? Congress? How do you use the things/services that ECCO has to offer?
These have been our initial years as an ECCO Country Member and, as already mentioned, we have definitely progressed at both clinical and academic levels. The involvement of other professionals apart from gastroenterologists has led to an overall improvement in patient care. Thus, we are sure that over the coming years we will be reaping more benefits, which ultimately will translate into better patient care.
© Pierre Ellul