Here we are at the 24th Congress of our Society, since it represents an absolute record for all of us, a source of pride. It is also the oportunity to speak to you, as President of the prior period. Basically, it is a time of evaluation of the activities of recent years, which, as you will see, will be submitted to the General Assembly detailed for Sections and Working Groups.

The strategy in these years our Society has made notable progress, an upward “trend”, due to all the work undertaken together. The first thing I want to say is linked to RSP budget. When I took the position as President, the budget allowed the Society at that time activities rather limited in scope and number. The Society’s budget increased afterwards. Not by increasing contributions. Our budget increase was due to the multiplication of our activities.

At this time the Society has a certain sound budget for the conduct of our actions increasingly wider, allows initiatives independent from sponsorship, allows payment for financial audit with great regularity, allows for a permanent teams of secretaries, accountants, lawyer and IT technician, thus ensuring comfort for all development projects and strategies we have developed together and that will grow in future years. Maybe sometimes I seemed “miserly”. I’d say it was just “prudent”. The key word being permanent transparency regarding all expenditures made by the Society.

The second important thing was, in my opinion, the way events have encouraged both the small and big ones. I wanted and I supported the possibility of permanent conferences for sections and working groups to be held regularly every 2 years – even if sometimes there were up to 100 participants and there was a major problem of obtaining sponsorships. Why did I do this? Because what’s new in each area must be discussed and updated. This can not be achieved only through regular meetings. When I received the Society’s management there was a fierce debate: why should we support small manifestations which sometimes did not keep the”elite” of scientific events? I insisted then – and I do now and I’ll do it in the future: small events are as important as the big ones because it helps promote the image of pneumology deleting obsolete anathema of “phtiziology”. The involvement and how some colleagues have been devoted in the territory have allowed now to talk proudly of the regional meeting in Tirgu Jiu, the Winter School in Medias, the Protocols Vama, the Caracal Days, Roşiori Days, the Covasna Days and the list goes on.

I was happy to see also other initiatives coming from various colleagues who have helped to extend structural Society, if I think the establishment of Sections of Tuberculosis, Lung Cancer, the Pneumopathies of Diffuse Interstitial and Sarcoidosis, Pleural Pathology and Ultrasound, Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficit and Rare Diseases, Pulmonology Circle, our School Society, the Section of Nurses and Technicians in Somnology, growth Bronchology Section – with outstanding activities and the somnology which became and Non-Invasive Ventilation, the Pneumopathies of the Interstitial who associated Sarcoidosis. Every time there was a proposal I encouraged it and supported it. All those who made possible these occurrences of “new borns” or family growing of the sections and working groups, I wish to thank.

Also, our magazine took on a new “cover” transition entirely in English, although sometimes criticized, allowing us to have a better visibility in the international circuit. Lastly, I pleaded for partnerships and collaborations with other local or international professional societies and patient organizations. Here I would mention the partnership with the Society of Cardiology and the Ministry of Health that allowed adding additional pressure to achieve new smoke-free laws, and engaging in joint projects with NGOs patient or representative organizations in terms of strategy as well as Forum Prevention, the Coalition Romania Breathe etc. Internationally there were four steps that have been shown valuably, in my opinion: the first was the signing of the partnership with ERS, facilitating ERS subscriptions obtained for all members of the RSP.

The second important step was partnering with French- SPLF in turn allowing Francophone relaunch not only in Romania but also in the neighboring countries and the resumption of contacts with Maghreb countries. The third step was the presence in the increasingly important on-ACCP CHEST events and, finally, the latest partnership that achieved with the American Thoracic Society. RSP strategy meant also valuable activities in relation with our neighbors pulmonologists. It should be highlighted conferences joint Romanian-Hungarian reaching their third edition, many meetings with brothers over Prut “export” of expertise in bronchology interventional, somnology and non-invasive ventilation and presence of our Society for the first time at the Congresses of Pulmonology Societies in Bulgaria, Serbia, Hungary and Austria.

All around the strategy I would like to draw attention to another aspect: Romanian Society of Pneumology has become in recent years a partner of significant dialogue with the Ministry of Health, the College of Physicians and the National Health Insurance, many local issues or general plan being resolved through dialogue, meetings and memories with and by those institutions. Training and preparing future generations was another objective: Residents Conference has become an annual event that marks the end of the RSP’s scientific program in December. I arrived in the same time at the third generation of the sleep specialists, with many young talents committed as a result of modules supported by RSP. My joy derives from establishing of a peaceful, quiet, working environment among colleagues, between opinion leaders in the country, between the new hopes of respiratory medicine.

I should finally thank a long list of colleagues, friends, seniors or juniors without which nothing would have progressed in the world of Romanian Pneumology. The list is very long and I am glad it is so. It includes new and old names and are thus convinced that the baton is handed over in good hands. I wish to everyone a sincere thank you for your support, and for criticism, all helping me see things more clearly and to fix in time existing shortcomings. Was it a lot or not? Time will be my most important judge of that: maybe what I did not cover everything. However, I assure you that I will continue to be supporting all those who will carry forward the Society on its natural way upward. I will be as glad as I am now for the future experiences and successes of the Romanian Society of Pneumology. Thank you!
mihaltanFlorin Mihaltan
President, Romanian Society of Pneumology