European MR society bestows first Humanitarian Award

April 1, 2007

Dr. Harald Ostensen, a radiologist from Norway whose reach extends all over the world, has received the European Magnetic Resonance Forum Foundation's inaugural Humanitarian Award.

Dr. Harald Ostensen, a radiologist from Norway whose reach extends all over the world, has received the European Magnetic Resonance Forum Foundation's inaugural Humanitarian Award.

The EMRF Foundation described Ostensen, who resides in Cluny, France, as one who exemplifies "decency and benevolence by organizing teaching courses and supporting appropriate means of medical imaging, particularly in countries with limited resources."

Until the early 1990s, Ostensen was the managing director of the Nycomed Intercontinental Continuing Education in Radiology (NICER) courses. Together with Prof. Holger Pettersson of the University of Lund in Sweden, Ostensen built up NICER into a global program, enlisting well-known teachers in radiology from all over the world.

After leaving his position with NICER, Ostensen joined the World Health Organization at its headquarters in Geneva, in charge of global medical imaging. Again, he put his emphasis on basic and applied teaching and edited numerous books and brochures, which are distributed free of charge, according to the EMRF.

One of his main goals in Geneva is the introduction of digital radiography in countries with few resources.

The Humanitarian Award was established on the occasion of EMRF's 25th anniversary and will be presented at a private ceremony in Potsdam, Germany, on May 25.

The EMRF was founded in 1982 and started its activities in 1983. It was created as an open institution to organize continuing education meetings on MR imaging and spectroscopy in medicine.