The European Academy of Neurology (EAN) is responsible for supporting the realization of most of these ideals in the field of Neurology. The European Board of Neurology (EBN), as a part of the Union of European Medical Specialists (UEMS), promotes the highest level of neurological patient care by upholding professional and ethical status of the neurological specialist and by harmonization of training programs for neurologists within Europe. The exam has a theoretical and a practical part and is held once a year in the country of the EAN-congress. We aim at meeting high standard for this exam (see the attachment).
Assessment is an integral part of a training program and a logical step to achieve harmonization is to develop a European exam for neurology. Such an examination is primarily intended to test young neurologists at the end of their training but could also serve other participants for self-assessment as part of reflective practice, and in order to inform their own continuous medical education needs. Continent-wide examinations have been standard practice in the United States for many years, and Europe should also aspire to this.
Several medical specialties, Anesthesiology being one of the forerunners, already provide Europe-wide yearly exams taken by thousands of candidates, setting a harmonized level for their young specialists, thus contributing to high quality care in this field across Europe and facilitating migration for professionals who wish to move within Europe. Although such European examinations do not currently have a legal status, increasing national authorities are recognizing some of them as equivalent to, or in place of a national test.
The European Board of Neurology has provided an annual exam for young neurologists since 2009. Those who pass their assessments successfully, become a certificate to indicate their distinction having done our Exam. Exam-questions and clinical assessment tasks are constructed very carefully by neurologists from all over Europe, with important input and support from the EAN, including European Guidelines and learning resources, leading to a level and variety of topics that cannot easily be reached within the borders of one nation.
Several national neurological societies in Europe do support us and encourage young neurologists to take the exam, including in some instances supporting their candidates financially to participate in the EBN-Examination. In other countries accreditation for those candidates who passed the exam may be recognized (making the exam attractive for residing neurologists as well).
Details on the 9th European Board Examination in Neurology, to be held at the next EAN-congress in Copenhagen can be found on our website www.uems-neuroboard.org