As I begin my term as President of ANZSNM I look forward to embracing both the challenges and the opportunities ahead for our Nuclear Medicine community.
I am committed to a Society that our members want to be a part of, as we embrace a rapidly changing era of technology, with a focus on personalised medicine, which will see the emergence of new tracers and new therapies.
I very much welcome discussion and ideas, and I encourage engagement in ANZSNM as we seek to strengthen collaboration, networking, education and opportunity in our field.
In terms of challenges, the current situation around Tc-99m supply represents a very significant challenge. The cooperative effort of the working group, comprising representation from ANZSNM, AANMS and RAINS in combination with GMS and ANSTO is very much appreciated. The working group is providing advice and assistance to facilitate the supply of Tc-99m across Australia and to ensure the availability of up-to-date information on the current situation to members. I would like to thank in particular Prof Dale Bailey and Matt Ayers, as the ANZSNM representatives on this group, for their time and commitment to this process. I recognise that even with these efforts there continues to be supply issues that are resulting in disruption, and as a Nuclear Medicine community, this is a significant challenge. I encourage you to provide us with feedback about any ongoing problems and issues during this time.
The opportunities in Nuclear Medicine were very much highlighted at the World Federation of Nuclear Medicine and Biology (WFNMB) meeting in Melbourne. This was an impressive meeting of 2000 attendees, a wealth of international speakers and an educational program of the highest quality. The sessions provided unprecedented learning opportunities and were thought-provoking, with a focus on the promising future of our specialty. Congratulations to Prof Andrew Scott, A/Prof Sze-Ting Lee, Prof Dale Bailey, the organising committee, track chairs, and all those associated with bringing such an impressive meeting to Australia. Thank you also to all the international speakers and attendees who enriched the meeting.
Following the WFNMB meeting in Melbourne, I had the opportunity to attend the post-congress meeting in Cairns, which was also a huge success and highlighted the rapid changes in prostate cancer imaging and therapy. In Australia, Prof Michael Hofman is leading two promising clinical trials, ProPSMA and TheraP, and the involvement of the ANZSNM/AANMS joint initiative, ARTnet (Australasian Radiopharmaceutical Trials network), has been an important component of these trials. This highlights the innovation and collaboration that is so strong in Australian nuclear medicine.
Continuing the prostate cancer theme, congratulations are extended to Prof Michael Hofman and his team for their impressive achievement of ‘SNMMI Image of the year’ : PSMA PET Imaging of Theranostic for Advanced Prostate Cancer. The image of the year was chosen from more than 2200 abstracts submitted to the SNMMI meeting and is voted by reviewers and the society leadership as exemplifying the most promising advances in the field of nuclear medicine and molecular imaging. This is a really excellent achievement.
1st May 2018 was a memorable date with the MBS reimbursement of Ga68 Octreotate PET imaging, following the successful submission for MSAC review by AANMS in 2016. This represents the first new PET item number in more than 15 years and is the first non-FDG PET tracer to receive a reimbursement. This is a significant achievement and we are grateful for the work of AANMS in pursuing this important MBS rebate.
As I come to the conclusion of my report I would like to thank Prof Dale Bailey for his Presidency of ANZSNM over the last two years. Dale’s leadership has resulted in a strong and healthy relationship with other professional societies both locally and internationally. He has had many achievements over his term, and in particular has promoted the importance of our multidisciplinary membership, which remains very much our strength. The Federal Council and Secretariat continues to prioritise education, CPD and networking, and we encourage members to utilise the functions and educational links on our new website. I would like to thank all those who contribute to our Society in so many ways, including those that volunteer their time and expertise on the Federal Council, branch committees, interest groups, advisory committees and to our publications and newsletter. Your hard work, dedication and contribution is vital to the success of our Society.
Finally, please remember to mark in your diary April 26th-28th, 2019 as the date of the ANZSNM 49th Annual Scientific Meeting. This will be held in the newly refurbished Adelaide Convention Centre, with the pre-congress meeting in the Barossa Valley. The Organising Committee is working hard on ensuring this will be an excellent meeting, with strong educational and networking opportunities.
Former President ANZSNM
When I was first approached to consider serving as President of the Society for the next two years, I immediately considered what I would like to change or improve in the way that the society functions. I felt that the central theme for the next two years should be to make the society a vital entity for all professionals involved in nuclear medicine in Australia and New Zealand.
We have many different roles, from those involved in basic research in developing new tools and probes, to those who represent the large organisations that make the sophisticated machinery that we rely upon, to those running a business employing people and providing an essential service, and finally to those involved in the clinical hospital environment with all of the challenges that this encompasses today. To satisfy such a diverse membership relies on solid basics: maintaining a healthy Society budget, reaching out to all involved no matter in which part of the discipline they work, recognising the diversity in people and practices that exists, and meeting the real needs of the members.
We should not lose sight of the fact that, for all the faults we can find, nuclear medicine in Australia is in a healthy position at present. This will continue as long as we stay committed to our core values and practices and continue to innovate. With some imagination, and a good degree of determination, we have been able to offer patients many of the latest developments in the field. In the management of neuroendocrine tumours we are the envy of our colleagues in North America and many European countries; also, the relatively recent introduction of PET scanning for prostate cancer with radiolabelled PSMA has probably had the greatest penetration in Australia of any country internationally at present, with partner therapies now beginning to emerge. Such innovation attracts funding.
The local biotech scene is gathering momentum, especially in the area of radiopharmaceuticals and theranostics, with companies like Sirtex leading the way with their profile on the international stage. A number of others are looking to follow in their path. ANSTO has one of the few “young” nuclear reactors worldwide which uses low-enriched uranium fuel, with tremendous production capacity to provide the basic nuclides that we will need into the future such as 99Mo and 177Lu.
Alan Kay, the US computer scientist, once said that “the best way to predict the future is to invent it”. We find ourselves in that position today. Which direction will multimodality hybrid imaging take? What new theranostics are just around the corner? How we involve ourselves in and prepare for these developments and embrace them will help to shape our future. Nuclear medicine has never enjoyed a more essential role in clinical medicine than it does today. The ANZSNM is moving towards developing the foundations for individuals involved in nuclear medicine to maintain best practice, embrace the early adoption of new technologies, and help to deliver the evidence required to translate these new developments into the mainstream. The future is indeed now.
Please get in touch with me with your ideas as to how we move our profession and this Society forward into the future: email@example.com
Dale Bailey PhD
Former President ANZSNM
Below is a profile of Former President, Dale Bailey, from 2008 courtesy of the ABC TV Series "Catalyst"
2018 a "Day in the Life of Australian Nuclear Medicine"
|1991-1992||Agatha van der Schaaf|
|2010-2011||Sze Ting Lee|