Frequently Asked Questions: The Current and Future Role of the Medical Oncologist in the 
Professional Care for Cancer Patients

1. What is the purpose of the ESMO Position Paper?

The ESMO Position Paper constitutes a widely-endorsed reference document for the oncology community, emphasising the crucial importance of top-quality education and training in the professional care of cancer patients. The Position Paper is not intended to be a European medical oncology status report.

2. Why have not all professional societies across Europe endorsed the ESMO Position Paper?

41 professional societies in 37 countries have endorsed the paper. Professional (medical) oncology societies do not exist in all European countries.

3. Who has contributed to the ESMO Position Paper?

The ESMO Executive Board; the members of the ESMO National Representatives and Membership Committee, the ESMO Young Oncologists Committee; the ESMO Community Oncology Working Group; the ESMO Global Curriculum Task Force; the Boards of the Medical Oncology Societies in Austria (OeGHO), Germany (DGHO), Italy (AIOM), and Spain (SEOM).

4. Does the release of the ESMO Position Paper mean that ESMO will be more involved in domestic medical oncology affairs?

ESMO believes it is crucial to advocate for the formal recognition of medical oncology as an independent medical specialty in countries where this is still not the case, and also for the harmonisation of professional qualifications in Europe. ESMO is also fully committed to synthesising national experience and professional concerns into ‘common’ policy recommendations and is already involved in many political initiatives at the European level to promote the profession of medical oncology and keep cancer policy high on the European healthcare agenda.