Emergency medicine and intensive care medicine: the missing link
Despite the fact that the principles of treating emergencies and acute diseases have been well described as far back as ancient times (1), emergency medicine (EM) as a recognized medical specialty has a life of less than 20 years. Indeed, according to the European Society of Emergency Medicine (EUSEM) website, in 2001 the United Kingdom and Ireland first recognized in Europe the specialty under the heading “Accident and Emergency Medicine”. Despite the remarkable progress in EM during the last decade, there are still huge diversities regarding the curriculum, the training, and the setting of the emergency departments (ED) around Europe. Some European countries have developed EM as a stand-alone specialty, others as a supra-specialty while a few have EDs that function with physicians from several specialties, such as internal medicine, cardiology, general surgery, anesthesiology, pediatrics etc.