Type of action: CSA Coordination and support action
Deadline Model: single-stage
Planned opening date: 15 May 2019
Deadline: 25 September 2019 17:00:00 Brussels time
Nuclear and ionising radiation technologies have a central place in modern medicine, saving lives and improving the quality of life for patients. In the EU alone, each citizen will undergo on average at least one medical procedure involving ionising radiation each year. This includes a wide variety of diagnostic tests – from simple dental or chest x-rays, through mass screening for female breast cancer, to molecular and advanced imaging, such as positron emission tomography (PET), computed tomography (CT) or hybrid imaging. Radiological imaging is also an integral component of minimally invasive interventional procedures, for example in cardiology and vascular treatments. Radiotherapy is an indispensable tool in the fight against cancer used in about half of the cancer patients in Europe.
The medical applications of ionising radiation have also significant growth and jobs potential. The EUR 20 billion global market of medical radiological equipment has an annual growth of at least 3%. In Europe alone, more than 700,000 healthcare workers are involved in medical procedures using ionising radiation. At least 60,000 people are directly employed by the medical equipment manufacturers which includes EU-based industrial champions and also many SMEs.
The medical applications of ionising radiation experience rapid development, both on the diagnostic and therapeutic side. Modern imaging and therapy are constantly progressing and technologies become more complex. There is a trend towards integrating different imaging modalities, diagnosis and treatment and move towards precision and personalised medicine.
This dynamic environment calls for the development of a co-ordinated and systematic European approach to research and innovation in medical applications of ionising radiation, with the aim to improve patient care and quality of life of the EU citizens, support growth and jobs in the EU and to improve the EU’s position on the global market. The action in this area should be informed by, and co-ordinated with, other Commission work on non-power applications of ionising radiation.