VAS Brief History


  • In 1991 Professor Catalano suggested setting up a European Working Group on Medical Angiology (EWGMA), with the aim of working towards training in and recognition of Angiology/Vascular Medicine in a European context

– The project was presented during a symposium in Milan “The Future of Medical Angiology” 1991

– The initial members were Professor Catalano (I) (elected to the Chair), M. Bartolo (I), Boccalon (F), Bollinger (CH), Breddin (D), Clement (B), Coccheri (I), Cooke (USA), Diamantopoulos (GR), Ehringer (A), Fagrell (S), Linhart (CS), Mahler (CH), Nizankowski (PL), Rieger (D), Strano (I), Tamburino (I) and Tooke (UK). It was agreed that repeated and unjustified absences of any members would cause them to fall automatically from office

  • At the 16th World Congress of IUA in Paris on 13th-18th September 1992, Professor Boccalon presented the establishment of the EWGMA as a fundamental event for the future of Angiology-The IUA proposed that the EWGMA should be recognised by the IUA as the IUA Committee on Medical Angiology (17th September 1992), of which Prof. Catalano and Prof. Breddin were elected chairpersons. The other members were Cooke, Strano, Clement, Bollinger, Boccalon, Fagrell and Rieger

– During the course of the 17th World Congress of IUA in London (President, Prof. Nicolaides) the EWGMA/IUA Committee on Medical Angiology Committee obtained its independence of action and internal rules

  • In 1993 an ICP (Inter-Universities Cooperation Programme was set up as Erasmus program and after in 1996 as Socrates program
  • 5 documents were published in the name of the EWGMA:

– The case for the specialty of Medical Angiology. European Working Group on Medical Angiology. International Angiology. 1991 10(4):199-201;

– The case for the speciality of medical angiology. European Working Group on Medical Angiology. Vasa. 1992;21(1):3-5;

– Proposed training requirements for Medical Angiology fellows. European Working Group on Medical Angiology. Int. Ang. 1993,12(4):323-5;

– Introduction to the First European document on Medical Angiology; Minerva Angiol 1992;17:161-4;

– Teaching and Educational Program of Medical Angiology/Vascular Medicine in Europe 1993, Elsevier Science Publ., Vascular Medicine)

  • 1996 – The European Fellowship in Medical Angiology was activated. This programme consists of 2 years of guided training at one of the recognised European Teaching Centres and a final written exam. The Fellowship, granted by the EWGMA , is recognised by the IUA.
  • – European Teaching Centres were identified which correspond to the characteristics published for the European Fellowship.
  • In 1996 work began on the organisational aspects for setting up a research projectindependent from financial interests and managed as a European co-operative project (the future CLIPS Study).

– The Clips Committee was officially established in Milan before a notary in order to guarantee the transparency and targeted use of all the funds to be raised for the project. The members of the committee included Prof. Catalano (Chairperson), Prof. Boccalon , Prof Mahler.

– The term of office of the Committee (according to the Articles of Association) was until completion of the study

– These projects highlighted the need for a broader organisation able to combine with ease the two aims of training and research

  • In 1998, therefore, the VAS–Vascular–Independent Research & Education–European Organisation- (a non-profit European Scientific Association) was legally established. The basic organisational aspects were defined, thus becoming organisational (see Organization), and the headquarters were established in Milan care of the Research Center on Vascular Diseases, University of Milan.

Prof. Catalano was elected VAS-Scientific Coordinator, Prof. G. Born Chairman of Guarantors/Ethics Committee

In 1998 the EWGMA joined VAS, so that the aims of the latter became training, research, awareness and obtaining the recognition of Angiology/Vascular Medicine

– Thus, the activity connected with the European Fellowship became part of Vas’s activity, although it was decided to slow it down and to review the system with the aim of creating a European Diploma in Angiology/Vascular Medicine.

  • In 2000 VAS applied to the UEMS as representatives of Angiology/Vascular Medicine, and to obtain the creation of an Angiology/Vascular Medicine Division. VAS became Member Representative of Angiology/Vascular Medicine in the UEMS Internal Medicine Section (see UEMS Section)
  • Since 2001 VAS has activated and renewed its contracts with Milan University for the European Master and European Post – graduate programmes and has been working on agreements for co-operation with Universities, Scientific Organisations and Societie
  • 2001 The first meeting of VAS-Cooperative Societies during the European Chapter of the International Union of Angiology Lifelines, Cologne, Germany May “European Harmonisation of Training in Medical Angiology Vascular Medicine” Chairman Prof. M. Catalano: It is decided that theterm Medical Angiology is a repetition and inadequate as Angiology is by definition a medical area. As there are different definitions used throughout the EU the term which will be used from now on is Angiology/Vascular Medicine VAS-European Cooperating Societies present: Belgian Angiology Society, College des Enseignants de Mèdecine Vasculaire (F), Czech Society of Angiology, German Society of Angiology, Italian Society for Vascular Investigatin (SIDV), Italian Society of Angiology and Vascular Disease (SIAPAV), Romanian Society of Angiology and Vascular Surgery, Sociètè d’Angiologie de Langue Francaise (SALF), Swiss Vascular Union, Polish Vascular Society (justified absence). Representatives of all the above mentioned Societies were present as well as members of the :Austrian Vascular Society, Greek Vascular Society, Slovenian Vascular Society, Yugoslavian Vascular Society.
  • 2002 the VAS European Teaching Panel was created
  • Since 2004 Vas has conducted awareness campaigns among Performers and Artists as members of a society who are aware of the difficulties of acting independently of any financial interests.
  • Starting in 2006, an Awareness Pilot Project has been activated, cooperating and coordinating with VAS. In Italy, AmaVAS was created as an umbrella for the joint efforts of clinicians, patients, performers and society as a whole, with activities for increasing knowledge and awareness and for organising action against vascular diseases and promoting the development of Angiology/Vascular Medicine Centres/Units, which are essential for patients
  • 2007 October VAS obtained the approval from the UEMS Council for the creation of an Angiology/Vascular Medicine Division. This represents the basis for the definition of the Specialist Curriculum and for the European Diploma in Angiology/Vascular Medicine which VAS has been working for over the past years staring from the European Fellowship. The list of Teaching Centres should be updated according to the new standards


  • 2008 Vas obtained recognition of Angiology/VM by the UEMS Council with the establishment of the UEMS Division of A/VM. The Board, whose members are the representatives of European Scientific Societies, was defined and a Policy Statement and Chapter 6 , including the criteria for the European Diploma were approved .
  • 2009 European Master Courses in Angiology /Vascular Medicine : for the first time (after 4 Editions), an official agreement between Milan University (I), VAS and University of Wien (A),University of Cluj Napoca (R),University of Grenoble (F), University of Lubiana (SL), MAÉT (H) was put into place. Interest has been expressed by other Universities. Currently, 9 Countries are involved in the form of Formal Agreements or with a defined agreement for training, in addition to VAS.
  • 1991-2012 : 9 Editions of European Angiology Days : This has now become a regular annual meeting, (week-end between end of November and December). The Days are an opportunity for in-depth talks and up-dates on scientific issues, discussing training and research projects, developing awareness of VAS and for meeting specialists of European Societes/Organization in neighbouring areas in order to talk about topics of common interest (multidiscipline joint sessions)
  • 2011 Programme for new European Postgraduate Courses
  • Vas European Teaching Panel : new members have joined the Panel.
  • 2011“Entering Reseach Data “ area on Vas web for Centres accreditated for collaborative researches (to join:
  • European BioBank on Vascular Disease-EBVD ( Subproject European Biobank on PAD Patients -EBPp): with Quality certification and a centralised organisation (in Milan). The VAS European Biobank on PAD Patients joined the European network of Biobanking And Biomolecular Resources Research Infrastructure (under FP7) . Vas joined the international Quality control Project on DNA mesurements (CGMR):Q2C
  • The Thrombin Generation and Immunologic markers in PAD studies were also started.
  • 2011 VAS is a Member of the TASCIIb Committee (Trans-Atlantic Inter-Society Consensus for the Management of PAD)
  • 2012 European Training Centres : VAS responsible for Certification of the European Training Centres (to receive the UEMS Accreditation)
  • Giving life to the “European PAD & Vascular Day” (2013)

From 2017

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