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In 2017, the College celebrated the 50th anniversary of the inception of emergency medicine, with a host of events and activities across the country to mark the occasion.

History of Emergency Medicine and the College

  • The College was granted the title Royal on 4 February by Her Majesty The Queen, acting on advice of her Ministers and so became The Royal College of Emergency Medicine.
  • College and Association formally merge on 29 February to become a new body, The College of Emergency Medicine, incorporated by Royal Charter.
  • On 1 October, HRH the Princess Royal graciously presents the Charter to Mr Jim Wardrope.
  • 40 years since establishment of CSA.
  • EuSEM now affiliated with 24 national societies in 23 European countries.
  • Faculty of A&E Medicine becomes College of Emergency Medicine (CEM) on 1 January. Mr Jim Wardrope is first president of CEM. The College is the authoritative body for Emergency Medicine in the UK and the Republic of Ireland (where it works alongside the Irish Association for Emergency Medicine).
  • College and Association move to new shared accommodation in Churchill House, Red Lion Square, Holborn.
  • College no longer constitutionally linked to “parent” colleges.
  • FFAEM diploma becomes FCEM, MFAEM becomes MCEM.
  • College of Arms authorises transfer of Faculty coat of arms to CEM.
  • Faculty and Association each vote unanimously at General Meetings for the two bodies to merge and form a College.
  • A Merger Board is formed to work out the practical details.
  • EuSEM forms Federation of national EM societies in Europe.
  • BAEM drops the “Accident” becoming British Association for Emergency Medicine (initials unchanged).
  • A UK Statutory Instrument formally changes the name of the specialty from A&E Medicine to Emergency Medicine (also known as Accident & Emergency Medicine).
  • First diet of examination confirming eligibility for entry to Higher Specialist Training in EM, Membership of the Faculty of A&E Medicine (MFAEM).
  • AGM of BAEM approves considering the establishment of a College of Emergency Medicine in conjunction with FAEM.
  • Journal is relaunched as Emergency Medicine Journal (EMJ).
  • SAC in A&E Medicine becomes Joint Committee on Higher Training in A&E Medicine under auspices of FAEM.
  • First diet of specialty examination of the Faculty of A&E Medicine (FFAEM).
  • Faculty is granted coat of arms by the College of Arms.
  • European Society for Emergency Medicine (EuSEM) founded, initially as individual membership body.
  • Inauguration of Intercollegiate Faculty of A&E Medicine on 2 November at RCSEng. Faculty has 6 “parent” colleges: RCSEng, RCPLond, RCSEd, RCPEd, RCPSGlas, and RCoA. Dr David Williams is first president.
  • EMRS is absorbed by the Faculty.
  • BAEM continues with responsibility for professional and clinical matters, while Faculty is to develop academic and training issues.
  • Intercollegiate Board on A&E Medicine established with representation from BAEM, RCPLond, and RCSEng. RCPEd, RCSEd, RCPSGlas, RCPI, RCSI, RCoA.
  • International Federation for Emergency Medicine established (first members are ACEP, ACEM, BAEM and CAEP).
  • Mr David Yates appointed in Manchester, to first professorial chair in A&E Medicine.
  • After many vigorous debates, CSA agrees name change to British Association for Accident & Emergency Medicine (BAEM).
  • First International Conference on Emergency Medicine, held in London.
  • British Accident & Emergency Medicine Journal and Archives of Emergency Medicine adopted as CSA journals.
  • Australasian College of Emergency Medicine established.
  • Emergency Medicine Research Society established as an independent body to foster research in the specialty. First meeting at Royal Station Hotel, York.
  • First diet of FRCSEd examination in Accident & Emergency Medicine and Surgery (became MRCSEd (A&E) subsequently. The final diet was in 2009).
  • Australian Society of Emergency Medicine formed.
  • First Senior Registrar appointments approved by the SAC in A&E Medicine (several individual posts were actually filled from 1976 onwards).
  • Canadian Association of Emergency Physicians established.
  • Specialist Advisory Committee (SAC) in Accident and Emergency Medicine formed under auspices of Joint Committees in Higher Medical and Surgical Training. SAC based at Regent’s Park (RCP) and CSA at Lincoln’s Inn Fields (RCS).
  • 30 Consultant posts established as an experimental pilot, creating a new specialty in the UK - Accident and Emergency Medicine. Specialty is called Emergency Medicine in most other countries where it is practiced.
  • First AGM of CSA in Walsall, near Birmingham.
  • American College of Emergency Physicians founded.
  • First meeting of the Casualty Surgeons Association (CSA) at BMA House. Maurice Ellis was in the chair. Most of the other members were non-consultant Senior Casualty officers. All 10 who attended the first meeting had surgical backgrounds.
  • Report by Sir Harry Platt recommends change of name from Casualty to Accident & Emergency Departments.
  • Senior Casualty Officer grade created to provide experienced medical supervision in Casualty Departments.
  • Mr Maurice Ellis, first full time Casualty Consultant in England, appointed to the General Infirmary at Leeds.

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