Sessions from ECR 2019

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Women in Focus at ECR 2019

Women in Focus was a brand new initiative at the 2019 European Congress of Radiology (ECR). The event consisted of a series of special, non-scientific sessions dedicated to women working in healthcare. Organised by Prof. Hedvig Hricak, the programme included a diverse array of inspiring speakers from across the world and from a variety of healthcare industries. These speakers shared their views on a range of topics related to gender and healthcare, tackling issues such as female leadership, mentoring, the generational progression of women in medicine, and work in challenging environments.

Intended to be educational as well as inspiring, Women in Focus explored and celebrated the crucial role that women play in healthcare, whilst offering advice and insights to those wishing to advance their caregiving skills and careers within this sector. Through an interactive session style, including live audience polling and panel discussions, attendees were encouraged to share their own views on a variety of important issues. As the programme was intended to be relevant and interesting to everyone, and not only to the radiological community, it was also open to the public.

The programme took place on Thursday, February 28 and Friday, March 1 in The Church, located near the Austria Center Vienna. The first sessions on each day were followed by a networking coffee break in the basement lounge area of The Church with complimentary refreshments and accompanying live music.

Interview with Hedvig Hricak

Women in Focus Highlights


Prof. Hedvig Hricak

Chair of the Radiology Department of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York

'Leadership is a choice – the decision is yours'

Prof. Dame Janet Husband

Emeritus Professor of Radiology at the Royal Marsden Hospital and Institute of Cancer Research

'Reach for the sky'

Prof. Rahel A. Kubik-Huch

Head of the Institute of Radiology and the Department of Medical Services of Kantonsspital Baden

'You can’t have it all – it is all about the right choices'

Prof. Regina Beets-Tan

Chair of the Department of Radiology at the Netherlands Cancer Institute, Amsterdam

'If I have seen a little further it is by standing on the shoulders of Giants…'

Testimonial on Women in Focus – ESR President, Prof. Lorenzo Derchi

Women play such a crucial role in healthcare delivery across the world, yet their contributions are often overlooked. At ECR 2019, we wanted to celebrate female accomplishments in the medical community and inspire younger female attendees by enabling them to engage and learn from experienced role models. Women in Focus has emerged as the product of these intentions. The programme offers a platform for speakers to share their experiences, offer constructive advice and debate the often-difficult issues surrounding gender and healthcare.

For the organisation of the programme, I could think of nobody more suitable to lead the project than Prof. Hedvig Hricak. Not only is she a highly accomplishment radiologist, but her promotion of female leadership and mentoring within the medical community has been a priority of hers for many years. She has led a number of women-related initiatives throughout her career and stands as an astonishing example of female leadership. Together with the ESR office, she has organised an inspiring programme, which will keep audiences engaged through interactive session participation.

Derchi Lorenzo E_ESR President 2018_2019_11994.jpg

The programme will be dedicated to the late Professor Alexander R. Margulis. He was an extraordinary radiologist and Honorary Member of the ESR, and also a champion of female leadership in medicine. Our intentions at the ESR are that other ‘in Focus’ programmes will be organised at future congresses, each with a unique theme and each dedicated to a cherished member of our community who is no longer with us.

I have no doubt that Women in Focus will be one of the most special highlights of ECR 2019. I encourage everyone to celebrate women in the medical community by attending these sessions.

Prof. Lorenzo Derchi
ESR President

Women in Focus Programme

Leading by example

Thursday, February 28, 2019/12:30-14:00/The Church & Tech Gate Auditorium (remote viewing)

In leadership, certain characteristics are shared by successful leaders of different professions, genders and cultures. Apart from resilience and hard work, what are these characteristics - knowledge of when to compete and when to collaborate, skill in listening, the ability to delegate, or perhaps luck? In this session, successful leaders will examine this question and share their perspectives.

Chairperson: Hedvig Hricak; New York, NY/US

Chairperson's introduction (10 min)
Hedvig Hricak; New York, NY/US

Getting to the top and how to thrive - lessons learned
(20 min)
Cally Palmer; London/UK

Dare with Care (20 min)
Catherine Estrampes; Paris/FR


Insights on Women in Radiology by the ESR President (10 min)
Lorenzo E. Derchi; Genoa/IT

Panel discussion: Stories to tell and wisdom to share
(30 min)

Additional panellists:

  • Deniz Akata; Ankara/TR
  • Michael Fuchsjäger; Graz/AT
  • Lilian Leong; Hong Kong/CN

Changing the image of women in leadership: generational differences and similarities

Thursday, February 28, 2019/15.45-17:00/The Church and Coffee & Talk 2 (remote viewing)

Each generation, from the baby boomers on, has unique characteristics, but there are also similarities that bridge across generations. The key in developing the leaders of tomorrow’s healthcare is understanding and respecting their values. This session will help us in that endeavour.

Moderator: Rahel A. Kubik-Huch; Baden/CH

Moderator's introduction (5 min)
Rahel A. Kubik-Huch; Baden/CH

Women in Medicine: Past, Present and Future
(20 min)
Valérie Vilgrain; Paris/FR

Leaders through the Lens of Time (20 min)
Christopher Hess; San Francisco, CA/US

Panel discussion: How far have we come?
(30 min)

Additional panellists:

  • Ulrike I. Attenberger; Mannheim/DE
  • Elizabeth A. Morris; New York, NY/US
  • Maximilian F. Reiser; Munich/DE

Women in challenging environments

Friday, March 1, 2019/14:00-15:15/The Church & Tech Gate Auditorium (remote viewing)

To succeed, provide aid and remain professional in times of hardship requires unique skills and qualities. In this session, we invite women to discuss extraordinary challenges they have faced, or have seen others face, both in their personal and professional lives. They will provide an insight into their experiences and the skills, resources and support required in order to help others face such challenges, and even to face them oneself.

 Moderator: Regina Beets-Tan; Amsterdam/NL

Moderator's introduction (5 min)
Regina Beets-Tan; Amsterdam/NL

‘It’s the Little Things That Matter’ (20 min)
Liz O’Riordan; Ipswich/UK

Safe Spaces for Women in Challenging Environments: The example of Women Health Counselling Centres for Refugee Women and Girls (20 min)
Şevkat Bahar Özvarış; Ankara/TR

Panel discussion: Diversity in healthcare delivery (30 min) 

Additional panellists:

  • Elizabeth Balogun; Lagos/NG
  • Dina Husseiny Salama; Cairo/EG
  • Shazia F. Khan; Islamabad/PK

Leadership and mentorship

Friday, March 1, 2019/16:00-17:25/The Church & Coffee & Talk 2 (remote viewing)

In childhood we are mentored by parents and teachers, but when we reach adulthood, it is often assumed that we no longer need guidance. In fact, mentorship is essential throughout our lives, and as adults, we need to seek out new mentors. Mentorship means different things to different people. In this session we will learn from leaders about the importance and structure of mentorship and gain helpful tips.

Moderator: Janet E. Husband; London/UK

Moderator's introduction (5 min)
Janet E. Husband; London/UK

Is Mentoring Gender-specific? (20 min)
Gabriel P. Krestin; Rotterdam/NL

The Many Facets of Mentoring - How to Find the Right Match? (20 min)
May Abdel-Wahab; Vienna/AT

Panel discussion: Reminiscence: remembering to pass forward (30 min)


Additional panellists:

  • Charlotte Beardmore; Guildford/UK
  • Valerie P. Jackson; Tucson, AZ/US
  • Geraldine McGinty; New York, NY/US

Closing remarks (10 min)
Janet E. Husband; London/UK & Hedvig Hricak; New York/US

In Memoriam Professor Alexander R. Margulis


Professor Alexander R. Margulis, MD, was a beloved member of the ESR community who touched the lives of a vast number of people throughout his long career.

As well as being one of the most outstanding investigators in medical science he was a man, whose wisdom and enthusiasm inspired generations of imaging professionals. His enormous contributions to the field of radiology were matched only by the influence he had on those around him. Prof. Margulis was a champion of female leadership, dedicating chapters of his book, The Road to Success: A Career Manual - How to Advance to the Top, to issues of gender and professional growth and working hard throughout his career to ensure equal advancement opportunities for both men and women.

It is with great honour that we dedicate the Women in Focus programme to him.