The European Federation of Psychiatric Trainees (EFPT) is an independent, non-profit making umbrella organization for European national psychiatric trainees’ associations. The organization currently represents psychiatric trainees from thirty European countries (World Health Organization definition of Europe).
The primary objective of EFPT is to enhance and harmonize standards of psychiatric education and training across Europe by working in partnership with relevant international and/or national bodies. The Federation also aims to promote the creation of national trainee associations in all European countries. Every year EFPT organizes the annual Forum of European psychiatric trainees. The Forum provides to European residents the opportunity to meet and discuss relevant issues for psychiatric training in Europe, exchange their training experiences and produce consensus statements expressing their viewpoint on different aspects of psychiatric training.
As a permanent member of the European Union of Medical Specialists (UEMS) Board of Psychiatry and of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, the EFPT actively participates both in the development of educational guidelines and the evaluation of psychiatric training institutions in Europe.
On June 1992, 16 psychiatric trainees from 9 different countries met in London to explore training issues, creating the European Forum for All Psychiatric Trainees.
In Utrecht, in March 1993, the organization was formally established.
At the 2nd EFPT meeting, in Cork, in April 1994, a constitution was written, establishing that the EFPT would seek membership from all European countries.
By the time of the 3rd EFPT meeting in Copenhagen (1995), representatives of the Forum were regularly attending meetings of the Union Europeenne des Medicines Specialistes (UEMS) – European Boards for Psychiatry and Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, which at the moment were working on the “Charter on training of medical specialists in the EU, requirements for the specialty of psychiatry”3. Two Forum representatives joined a World Health Organization consultation team in Romania to contribute to the creation of a new psychiatric training program in this country.
In April 1996, the Forum was held in Lisbon, Portugal, moving to Southern Europe for the first time.
The Forum which was organized in Athens (Greece, March 1997), created an opportunity to expand the Forum into Central and Eastern Europe. Over a period of 4 years the number of members of the European Forum for all Psychiatric Trainees had increased to include representatives from all of the EU countries and from several East European countries. The number of national trainee organizations had grown from 4 to 12.
At the 6th Forum held in Ghent (Belgium, 1998), 22 countries (44 delegates) were present. The structure of the European Forum for all Psychiatric Trainees was significantly changed: a Federation was created (the European Federation of Psychiatric Trainees) with the election of an Executive Board composed by a President, a Secretary General and a Treasurer.
At the 7th Forum held in Tampere (Finland, 1999) the statements on “Mental Health Promotion”, “Psychotherapy in Training” and “Evaluation of Knowledge” were produced.
At the 8th Forum held in Berlin (Germany, 2000) 17 countries were present. A workgroup aimed to increase collaboration with WAYPT and WPA young Psychiatrists Program started.
At the 9th Forum held in Napoli, (Italy, 2001), 15 countries participated and the statements on “Quality of training”, “Psychotherapy training”, “Experience in Research”, “Exchange of Trainees”, and “WAYPT/WPA Young Psychiatrist Program” were updated.
At the 10th Forum held in Sinaia (Romania, June 2002), 14 countries participated. A poster session had been organized whose theme was “status of psychiatric training” in each participating country. Statements on “Quality of training”, “Quality assurance”, “Independent appeal procedure”, “Training in community based psychiatry”, “Psychotherapy training”, “Exchange of trainees between different countries”, “Training in child and adolescent psychiatry” were updated. A workgroup on a satisfaction survey concerning the psychiatric training in Europe started its activities.
The 11th Forum was held in Paris (France, May 2003). The poster session theme was “European exchange program”. During this meeting, Statements were produced on: “EFPT website”, “Profile of a psychiatrist”, “Psychiatry training promotion”, “Training in psychotherapy”, “Satisfaction Survey”, “Old age psychotherapy”, “European Exchange program”, “Legal, ethical and human rights issue in psychiatry”, “Common trunk” and “Position of Child And Adolescent psychiatry in Europe”
The 12th Forum was held in Cambridge (UK in May 2004). The following working groups were active during the Forum: “Exchange program”, “Satisfaction survey”, “Reviewing statement”, “Legal Human rights and ethics in psychiatric training”, “Profile of a psychiatrist”, “International relationships” and “Research experience”.
The 13th Forum was held in Istanbul (Turkey, June 2005). 21 countries attended this Forum. The EFPT Statements updated during this Forum were: “Exchange”, “CAP”, “Removal of a trainee from training”, “Supervision and Evaluation”, “Psychotherapy Training”, “Experience in Research”, “Legal Ethical and Human rights issues”, “Liaison Psychiatry”. The poster session theme was “Mental health Policies in the European Countries” .
The 14th Forum was held in Riga (Latvia, June 2006). 21 countries attended. Working groups were held on: the EFPT website C.A.P, Competency Based Training, Exchange. EFPT decided to start the procedures to register the Federation officially and formed the Constitution and Registration working group. EFPT statement on “Competency Based training” was produced. The poster presentation theme was “Pros and cons of Psychiatric training and working conditions in the European countries”
The 15th Forum was held in Athens (Greece, 2007). 23 countries participated. The progress of registration procedures, in order to become an NGO with a seat in Belgium was discussed. EFPT agreed to assist UEMS in formulating a competency based curriculum in Post-Graduate Psychiatric training. Working groups that took place were: Competency Based Training, Internet Technology & satisfaction survey, Exchange programs, Families and carers, Working conditions of trainees, Burn-out syndrome, C.A.P. The theme of the poster session was “Major advances in Psychiatry, during the last century, in the countries of Europe”
The 16th Forum was held in Göteborg (Sweden, 2008). The Forum was attended by 23 countries. The poster theme was “A national perspective on societies expectation of psychiatry”. The meeting was slightly changed in its structure. On first day the introduction session took place. Day two and three were dedicated to working groups and to scientific session. On fourth and last day the EFPT General Assembly was held. This to make it possible for the General Assembly minutes to be distributed in the registration process. A major revision of statements was done. Competence based training group discussed the almost final version of the UEMS Framework for Competencies in psychiatry document. As a consequence of this the revision of the “Assessment of knowledge” statement was produced.
The 17th Forum was held in Cambridge (UK, 2009), with the participation of 28 countries. The following statements were revised: “general medicine and neurology in psychiatry training”, “child and adolescent psychiatry training”, “psychotherapy training”, “legal, ethical and human rights”, “competency based training”. The poster session theme was “recruitment in psychiatry”.
On March 2010, the EFPT Constitution was signed in Bruxelles (Belgium) and EFPT was officially registered as an NGO.
The 18th Forum was held in Dubrovnik (Croatia, 2010).The Forum was attended by 29 countries. The theme of the poster session was “Evaluation of psychiatric training in Europe”. The EFPT Bylaws were approved during the Forum and the statement on “Relationship of trainees with pharmaceutical industries” was produced. The statements on “Child and Adolescent Psychiatry training” and on “Educational and clinical supervision” were updated.
The 19th EFPT Forum in Prague (Czech Republic, 2011) under the title „Future of Psychiatry and Psychiatric Training“, was attended by 32 countries. New EFPT logo was introduced and for the first time the EFPT General Assembley was held, with EFPT being officially registered as an NGO. Also two other important developments came to birth in Prague, EFPT Award for Excellence (an annual prize for an innovative project in psychiatric training) and EFPT Exchange program (short exchange program for trainees within member countries).
The 20th EFPT Forum took place in Sorrento (Italy, 2012). Psychiatric trainees from 37 countries participated. We enjoyed the scent of lemons, the sun of the “costiera” and 20 internationally renowned speakers in the scientific session. We discussed with them the “New directions for psychiatry”. Two new countries (Azerbaijan and Malta) joined EFPT as official members and five countries were observers at this Forum for the first time.
The 21st EFPT Forum in Zurich (Switzerland, 2013) was attended by 33 countries in 2013. Under the title of „Cooperation in Psychiatry“ major efforts were undertaken to update the EFPT bylaws and statements. A new statement on „Promoting recruitment and a positive image of psychiatry“ was added. A memorable opening day was held on a boat on the Zurich lake.
EFPT is a federation of psychiatric trainees’ associations. Each association, to join the Federation as a full member, has to follow this procedure:
1) The candidate association must address a letter of candidature to the Board of the Association;
2) The acceptance of the candidature will be voted by the EFPT Board by a simple majority;
3) The Board will inform the general assembly of all the candidatures. Delegates of the psychiatric trainees’ association that requested the membership have to attend the next EFPT Forum.
The admission of new full members is subordinated to the three following conditions:
1) to have taken part in two consecutive forums;
2) to provide the statutes of the national organization to the board;
3) to receive approval of the application by vote by a simple majority in a General Assembly.
If a member organization does not take part in two consecutive forums, this one loses its statute of effective member.