Message from the Chairman
Activities of the Society
The Oto-Rhino-Laryngological Society of Japan was established in 1893. As a medical society affiliated with the Japanese Medical Science Federation, it has one of the longest histories in terms of academic societies in Japan. It established an academic system for otorhinolaryngology that, for the first time in the world, brought otology, nasopharyngology, and laryngology together under one field. In other words, Japan is the birthplace of otorhinolaryngology. Currently, many universities have courses named "Otorhinolaryngology/Head and Neck Surgery." Specializing in a diverse range of areas from ear, nose, oral cavity, throat and larynx, this is a field of sensory organs and motor organs that treats patients spanning ages from infants to the elderly, by surgical or medical means.
Currently, the Society has 16 related societies in a variety of fields. As the number of international academic societies increases, the Society is looking to the future and is promoting academic deepening, enrichment of programs, streamlining of academic societies, and consolidation and integration of academic societies to enable focused participation by members. In 2021, the Japan Society of Immunology and Allergology in Otolaryngology and the Japan Society for Infection and Aerosols in Otorhinolaryngology are expected to integrate. At present, we are moving forward in steps toward integration, successively holding meetings of the Japan Laryngological Association, the Society of Swallowing and Dysphagia of Japan, the Japan Audiological Society, and the Japan Society of Logopedics and Phoniatrics.
We are also expanding the specialist physician course held every autumn. Last year, we planned a new course for appointing hearing-aid consulting physicians. Beginning with the 34th course this fall, the name of the course will be changed to "Autumn Seminar of ORL Society of Japan." In addition to the traditional specialist physician course, a summer course for specialists, a course for appointing hearing-aid consulting physicians, and a session （academic meeting） of the Japan Society of Clinical Otolaryngologists will be incorporated. We believe these will be highly satisfying courses with rich contents. At the same time, we are engaged in the planning of the spring general meeting and academic courses, primarily through academic committees and academic working groups in order to enrich the contents. We believe that the members serving as instructors already recognize the increased diversity of the programs.
Several years ago, we launched a new system for member information to enhance the convenience for members, efficiency of procedures, and accuracy of data. We introduced mechanisms that would aid in the acquisition of credits by medical specialists in the Society, the confirmation of personal histories, and the payment of membership dues, and are gradually ramping these up while making improvements.
The Society is actively addressing hearing disorders in light of the rapidly aging society, and is examining plans to counter hearing disabilities from infancy to old age, with the support of the government.
We are also engaged in wide-ranging and proactive initiatives through 22 expert committees. We are working to enhance our public relations, particularly our website, to provide a wealth of information, and invite you to access the site. Moreover, we actively promote the gender equality demanded by society, and are creating environments in which female doctors can play active roles.
In light of future demographics, eating disorders and dysphagia treatment are expected to become extremely important. Particularly in the diagnosis and treatment of dysphagia patients at home or in facilities, otolaryngologists should take the lead. However, at present, the degree of involvement of otolaryngologists varies by region. The causes of eating disorders and dysphagia are diverse, and it is necessary to provide medical treatment based on cooperation among many occupational categories in order to provide treatment that satisfies the patients and their families. It is necessary to build networks in collaboration with other occupational categories, cooperating with rehabilitation and dentistry departments, co-medical fields, and the government. In particular, as cooperation with dentists who specialize in the evaluation of masticatory functioning, oral hygiene, and oral functioning is important, we are continuing discussions with the Japan Dental Association.
Enhancing the care level of members and specialists and ensuring safer and higher quality medical care are also important responsibilities of the Society. In addition to operating a specialist system for the training of high-level specialists, we conduct hands-on seminars in courses and other events, and work to enable specialist physicians and young physicians hone their skills. A certification system for surgical instructors in the fields of otology and rhinology, to improve the level of surgery and education, will also start soon.
A stable organization of medical practitioners is needed to provide high-quality medical care in every region. The nationwide organizing of medical associations for the enhancement of otolaryngological treatment, including regional care, school health services and insured care, is progressing smoothly. The Japan Society of Clinical Otolaryngologists has been launched, with the participation of hospital medical practitioners from many institutions. Looking ahead, while sharing roles with academic societies and medical associations, we will strive to revitalize otolaryngology clinics and provide medical care that satisfies patients.
Aiming at an even greater level of trust in otolaryngology and head and neck surgery departments, we will quickly and proactively address a wide range of key issues as an academic society. We thank you in advance for your understanding and cooperation.
Hiroshi Moriyama, MD, PhD
Chairman, Board of Directors
The Oto-Rhino-Laryngological Society of Japan, Inc.
(January 14th, 2020)