1. Can you please illustrate the structure and goals of IAN to the EAN Pages readers?
I am very pleased to be asked for an interview by the European Academy of Neurology (EAN). Indian Academy of Neurology (IAN) is the only scientific body of the Indian Neurologists. The aims and objectives of the Academy are: (1) to maintain the highest standard in the ethics and practice of the speciality and the subspecialties; (2) to promote and encourage research in the clinical and experimental work pertaining to this speciality; and (3) to promote liaison and advocacy with National and International agencies in the field of neurosciences. The other objective of the Academy, the important societal responsibility, is to help in ameliorating human distress particularly amongst the socially/economically weak sections of society.
The elected Executive Committee (governing body) oversees the functions of the Academy. The members of the Executive Committee include: President; two fast Presidents; President-Elect; Secretary; Treasurer; Editor; four Executive Committee members; and Continuing Medical Education (CME) Convenor. Annals of Indian Academy of Neurology (AIAN bimonthly) is the official journal of the Academy. The Academy organizes Annual Congress once a year.
The Academy encourages the development of the subspecialities. The Academy helps in arranging short-term fellowships for the younger members of the Academy, at the reputed institutions across the world.
The Academy awards fellowship, Fellow of Indian Academy of Neurology (FIAN) to its members who have contributed in a very significant way towards development of Neurosciences in India.
2. How does IAN promote the development of clinical neurology and neurological science throughout India?
To promote the development of clinical neurology and neurological sciences in the country, the Academy conducts scientific meetings, symposia, workshops and continuing medical education programs in the speciality or subspecialties for maintaining the upto-date knowledge in neurology. Neuroscientists of international repute from India or abroad are invited for these meetings to share their experience and expertise with the attendees.
The Academy conducts two teaching modules for residents in neurology, (1) Fundamental Courses in research methodology, evidence based medicine, basics in genetics, and basics in immunology and (2) Master Classes in clinical neurology.
The scientific program of the Annual meet of the Academy includes continuing medical education sessions, orations, special lectures, symposia, hot topic session, grand rounds, clinic-pathological conferences, best paper award sessions in various subspeciality, platform paper presentation sessions, poster sessions, and Quiz for residents in neurology.
In the last two years IAN collaborated with Tropical and Geographical Neurology Specialty Group (TGNSG) of World Federation of Neurology in conducting two session of lecture series on infections of central nervous system. These sessions were open to the neurologists worldwide. This program is one of the most popular and well appreciate programs. Presently IAN is collaborating with the new series of the TGNSG “Inspiring People in Neurosciences”.
IAN is actively involved in public awareness programs on various neurological diseases. We conduct regular webinars on various neurological disorders to lay public. The webinars include debates, Q&A sessions, and lectures.
3. EAN looks forward to working with you and IAN. How do you see such cooperation developing in particular concerning helping address current global challenges such as the COVID-19 pandemic?
The president, president-elect, and secretary of the IAN had a first meeting with the president of European Academy of Neurology Prof Claudio Bassetti on March 30, 2021. Prof Kailash Bhatia was present as special invitee at the meeting. It was a very fruitful meeting. Several areas of co-operation between the two Academies were identified, COVID-19 is one of the areas. We are trying to get the procedures for mutual co-operation from the regulatory authorities of Government of India. We at IAN are looking for a exciting and fruitful co-operation between the two Academies. We have identified several areas for co-operation. Prof Claudio Bassetti, president of EAN extended an invitation for a special session during EAN 2021 conference. We proposed a session on “Infections of CNS” which was agreed upon. Prof JMK Murthy, President of IAN extended invitation for a special session by the EAN during IANCON 2020-2021 to be held in November 2021. We have to fine tune others areas of cooperation in the next one month.