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Quality certificate for colonoscopy

Senior Physician: Ao. Univ. Monika Ferlitsch

Team: Elisabeth Waldmann
Lisa-Maria Rockenbauer

In Austria, screening colonoscopy has been part of the health check-up since 2005 and is recommended for women and men over the age of 50. In recent years, numerous studies have increasingly emphasized the importance of high-quality examinations (1-5). The recently published EU guidelines also emphasize that an infrequently performed, high-quality screening colonoscopy is of greater benefit to the patient than frequently performed endoscopy with a lower quality standard.

Since there are no programs in Austria to record and control the quality standards in VU colonoscopy, the Austrian Society for Gastroenterology and Hepatology, together with the Main Association of Austrian Social Insurance Institutions and the Austrian Cancer Aid, created the "Colon Cancer Prevention Quality Certificate" in 2007. Participation is on a voluntary basis. Approximately half of all endoscopy centers in Austria (hospitals, surgeries and outpatient clinics) are currently taking part in the project. More information can be found on our » homepage.

Due to its great success, the certificate, which was issued for two years and was launched as a pilot study, has been extended for the fifth time and includes a database with > 200,000 screening colonoscopies.

Goal of the research group:
Participant support, introduction of new quality criteria for colorectal cancer screening, review of the quality criteria, development of guidelines (ESGE is currently developing a polypectomy and mucosectomy guideline), regular feedback to the participants both on their own examination quality and in comparison to other participants (state-wide and Austria-wide ), communication of the latest publications/guidelines in the field of (preventive) colonoscopy.