Technology Committee Report
Oliver Bozinov, Chair
The goal of the WFNS Technology Committee is to provide knowledge about and advice regarding any technology used in Neurosurgery. The vision of the Committee is to offer a complete advisory board and database of technology knowledge for all Neurosurgeons in the world and in every society. This goal and vision recognize the necessity that not only newest technology is discussed but also that we provide advice for colleagues in countries whose resources do not access to the highest technology and who sometimes struggle with lowbudget (and therefore often low-technology) equipment. All our efforts hold as their highest priority to help the neurosurgeons of the world to provide better care for their patients.
The WFNS Technology Committee currently has 11 members from 4 different continents and 8 different countries. Our committee wants to enhance the group by adding Neurosurgeons with different clinical subspecialty interests and especially to include members from all 5 continents in the future. The Technology Committee is the preferred contact for all organizers of symposia/meetings/ educational congresses in terms of support and guidance with respect to technology issues. We keep a list of peers who can offer technology lectures and evaluate special technologies of interest to neurosurgeons at conferences.
Our committee work has been shaken by the Coronavirus in the past year, much as the rest of the world. All members had troubled times in their departments and hospitals. Due to the many different countries and areas we originate from, the troubled times were constantly changing, and thus all members could help each other with advice and support between waves. The monthly Zoom Call within the WFNS Technology Committee was used for this exchange as well. The Committee had organized a huge conference in Surabaya, Indonesia for November 2020 included in the 5th ISMINS 2020. Prof. Asra Fauzi (Indonesia) was played the lead role and provided us an excellent opportunity to present the work of the WFNS Technology Committee with planned practical sessions. Unfortunately, this congress was canceled without a virtual substitute. There has been another attempt to organize the 5th ISMINS in March 2021, but current Coronavirus conditions did not support its realization.
The Technology Committee therefore has started to organize virtual symposia, with the first one held in December 2020 (see picture). Distinguished faculty were invited to report their personal experience with the primary theme being the “Impact of Intraoperative Imaging Technology” in Neurosurgery. This first symposium was perfectly organized by the host and speaker Prof. Moiyadi (India) using Zoom and we had over 60 registrations and participants. The discussion and round table at the end with lots of questions from the audience was very fruitful. The next symposium of our committee will be about preoperative planning with following topics “Advances in Virtual Reality, 3D Printing, and Neuronavigation” and will be aimed to Neurosurgeons in training. This session will be led by Prof. Nakaji (USA). The exact date will be announced shortly. The WFNS Technology Committee will organize further virtual symposia in the near future until we hopefully can meet all in person again at future conferences. However, since virtual symposia bring advantages for colleagues who cannot travel easily, we will continue with this online offering as well.
One idea arising from the Technology Committee still in development is establishing a list of technology items that are used and explained (with their pro and cons) by selected experts. This database would have a peer expert report on our homepage so Neurosurgeons worldwide can easily get an objective overview of this technology for free. This should include (for now) technology that needs electricity but can be expanded (if successful) to all instruments used in Neurosurgery. The report will include a summary, FAQ, tutorial (including video where appropriate), history, indications, provide list of available tools, references, contact details, future developments and limitations. It is important that not only newest technology be considered but also simpler and cheaper technologies, recognizing that many Neurosurgeons in the world have no access to the highest tiers of commercially available technology. The project name is LIST. Keep your eyes open in the future for this exciting project.
The Technology Committee and its individual members exist to further the goal of evaluating, communicating about, and fostering the growth of technology in the service of all neurosurgical patients in. We welcome requests to address specific member needs. Finally, we wish all our colleagues to stay healthy and master these Corona times.