ESR Research Seed Grant Global 2022

The European Society of Radiology (ESR), in cooperation with the European Institute for Biomedical Imaging Research (EIBIR), invited applications for the ESR Research Seed Grant Global to stimulate and provide funding for innovative projects and pilot studies from Eastern Europe, Central Asia and Africa that will subsequently lead to larger studies and further funding applications.

Overall, we’ve received 21 applications from 11 counties across the two thematic areas for 2022: Enhancing quality in radiological imaging and interventional radiology (15 applications) and Value-based radiology (6 applications).

We’d like to thank all applicants for their innovative submissions.

The extensive review was carried out by a panel of international experts. Their support was invaluable during the evaluation process. We thank them for their time and effort to make this programme possible.

The following proposals were selected for funding:

Enhancing quality in radiological imaging and interventional radiology

Value-based radiology

  • A Radiology-Driven Approach to Improve Clinical Outcomes for Patients with Hepatocellular Carcinoma in Tanzania: A Quality Improvement Project

Expected Impact: Given the limited data available on HCC in SSA, the creation of a patient registry, driven by radiology, will improve the epidemiological and clinicopathological understanding of the disease in the region. This will help guide the development of diagnostic and treatment guidelines, as well asscreening programs, that are context-specific to the resource-limitations and the unique disease-processes of HCC in the region. In addition, this program will work to improve the effectiveness of radiologists’ role in the active diagnosis and management of HCC, thereby contributing to better outcomes for HCC patients in the near future as well. As the national referral centre for Tanzania, the impact of such a program will extend across the country, creating a path forward to improve the prognosis of a deadly, high-burden cancer amongst a population of over 60 million.

Erick Mbuguje, Muhimbili National Hospital, United Republic of Tanzania

  • Assessing the Safety and Effectiveness of the First Interventional Radiology Training Program in Uganda: A Quality Assurance Project

Expected Impact: The success of the IR training program in Uganda hinges on the capacity to track and monitor procedural and clinical outcomes, thereby ensuring that IR is introduced to Uganda in an evidence-based, data-driven manner. To accomplish this goal, the development of a robust research foundation is essential to ensure that safety and quality standards are met to the highest degree in order to maximally improve the quality of care available to a population of over 45 million people.

To represent the first step towards the standardisation of a scoring system to assess the quality of prostate MR imaging prior to radiologist’s interpretation and allow clinicians to have more confidence in using the scan to determine patient care. 

Eva Nabawanuka, Makerere University college of health sciences, Uganda

  • Improving utilisation of mechanical thrombectomy for acute ischemic stroke by implementation of standardized protocols for patient selection, imaging and referral

Expected Impact: This project will promote the value of mechanical thrombectomy as a state-of-art method for treating patients with acute ischemic stroke. Educational lectures will deepen the knowledge of referring neurologists on the specifics of mechanical thrombectomy. Lectures for radiologists and radiographers will emphasize the importance of fast and standardized radiologic imaging and reporting. This project will also establish standardized protocols for patient selection, imaging and reporting, as well as communicating the findings with the stroke center. The overall expected benefit of education and standardization would be the increase of at least 20% in the total number of patients referred for mechanical thrombectomy. This increase of referrals will also increase the total percentage of patients with acute ischemic stroke treated with mechanical thrombectomy thus improving the equality in medical care throughout the region. Moreover, the project will encourage interdisciplinary discussion and sharing knowledge.

Tajana Turk, University Hospital Center Osijek, Croatia