Tuesday, 16 August 2022
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Four new titles in surgery: what do you think?

  • Category: RBSS
  • Last Updated: Sunday, 20 February 2022 16:48
  • Hits: 909


The RBSS board wants to inform the RBSS membership that the High Council of Specialists and General Practitioners (HRSH) wants to conduct a survey among the various actors involved in the training of general surgeons.

Four new titles in surgery should see the light (Visceral, Thoracic, Vascular, Cardiac) to replace the (single) title in General Surgery, which will eventually disappear.

One of the tasks of the the High Council of Specialists and General Practitioners (Hoge Raad/Conseil Supérieur) consists of advising the Minister of Health on the establishment of criteria for the recognition of specialists, general practitioners, supervisors and heads of departments.

The HRSH says there is a need for additional training in many surgical "subspecialties" after obtaining the Level 2 title. This falls outside the regulated and monitored framework and extends the duration of the training. The HRSH also refers to the need to acquire a more in-depth specialization due to the increasing medical and technological complexity. It is therefore the intention to create new level 2 (= "specialization") titles, namely those for :

  • visceral surgery (including endocrine and breast surgery)

  • vascular surgery

  • cardiact surgery

  • thoracic surgery

The idea is to use the same methodology as for internal medicine: a three-year truncus communis, followed by an evaluation by a validation committee to ensure that the skills acquired are sufficient.

The above mentioned new titles are also used within a European context and should facilitate further training and professional migration. Currently, a surgeon with a Belgian degree in "General surgical" cannot apply directly for recognition in eg. visceral surgery on a 1:1 basis in a country where one of the above mentioned subdiscpline recognitions are already used instead of "General Surgery", leaving the candidate to proof his/hers professional proficiency in the specific surgical subdisciplin instead of relying on the specialization title.

These draft recommendations will then be submitted to the High Council (HR/CS), which also will give additional advice on the proportionality test. This announcement, and the opportunity to provide feedback, is in preparation for this proportionality test.

The documents are now open for consultation on the website of the FOD/SPF Public Health (link naar Nederlandstalige webpagina & documenten / lien vers site web & documents Francophone).

You can report any reaction to the e-mail address This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with the topic “Preparation for proportionality test level 2 titles visceral, vascular, thoracic and cardiac surgery” before April 1, 2022.