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The UEMS (Union Europeenne des Medecins Specialistes or European Union of Medical Specialists) was founded in 1958 and is constituted by the National Medical Associations of 40 countries and 43 Specialist Sections. It represents over 1.6 million specialists in all the different specialties in the European Union.

The UEMS-ORL is one of the specialist sections that represents approximately 30,000 European ORL-HNS specialists within this body. The UEMS-ORL Section consists of delegates from 37 European countries that together define, maintain and harmonise the standards of ORL practice throughout Europe thus facilitating free movement of professionals.

Important landmarks achieved by UEMS-ORL include the training logbook for the general specialist which are used by several European countres and the subspecialty training programmes. At present, the European Training Requirements for ORL -HNS are an advanced stage, being drafted in conjunction with the European ORL Specialist societies. They describe European Standards in ORL training that reflect modern medical practice and current scientific findings. The UEMS-ORL does not aim to supersede the National Authorities' competence in defining the content of postgraduate training in their own State but rather to complement these and ensure that high quality training is provided across Europe. UEMS-ORL is one organization forming part of the European Confederation of ORL-HNS.

The current Board of the UEMS-ORL is composed of the President, Prof Heikki Irjala (Finland), the Secretary General, Dr Kim Werther (Denmark), Treasurer Dr Kenneth Muscat (Malta), and permanent secretary Dr Maria de la Mota (Spain).