Japan Society of Medical Physics (Public Interest Incorporated Association)
President Keiichi Akahane
Medical physics is an academic field that applies and utilizes the knowledge and outcomes of physical engineering to medicine and contributes to human health through the activities in medical sciences and practices. The basis of the Japan Society of Medical Physics (JSMP) was the physics committee of Japan Radiological Society (JRS). It moved to the Physicist Association of JRS and to the Japanese Association of Radiological Physicists (JARP) thereafter. In 2000, it was merged with the Japanese Association of Medical Physicists (JAMP), and the current JSMP was established. The society has about 65-year-old history and has held the 100th academic meeting in 2010. It was certified as a General Incorporated Association in October 2011, and as a Public Interest Incorporated Association in May 2018.
Since the establishment of the JSMP, the situation surrounding medical physics and its role has also changed. Medical physics remains fundamentally crucial in radiology and radiotherapy, but with the advancement of science and technology and the major changes in social conditions, the subject areas and contents have been broadened. In fact, the subject expertise and skills are also diverse. Due to the development of diagnostic images with higher quality and more complicated and highly accurate radiotherapy, diagnostic ability and therapeutic effect have been improving more and more. In order to timely respond to progressive science and technology and to lead further progress, academic societies are required to have high scientific levels. The JSMP also plays a role of contributing to the advancement of medical physics by offering places where the discussions of medical physics can be made freely and vigorously by organizing academic meetings, publishing journals, and cooperating with other related organizations.
While the use of radiation has increased, the attention of the public to the appropriate use of radiation, including in medicine, has also been very high due to nuclear and radiation accidents occurred in the past. In Japan, the frequency of radiation diagnosis and collective dose has been larger than those in other countries, and it is known as a country with a lot of radiation exposures. Japan has a large number of advanced medical diagnostic and therapeutic equipment and that medical care insurance system broadly provides advanced medical treatment for the people. On the other hand, there is still much room for reasonably reducing medical exposure doses. It is important to introduce international protection standards appropriately considering the domestic situations, to set appropriate conditions for radiation irradiation, to perform appropriate quality control of equipment, and to calculate exposure doses and evaluate them.
Internationally medical physicist has been recognized as a professional qualification with medical and physical knowledge and skills related to these issues, playing important roles in various fields of radiation diagnosis, radiotherapy and nuclear medicine. The society has been deeply involved in the medical physics education and medical physicist certification in Japan from the very beginning. Advanced medical care can be performed when various kinds of specialists cooperate with each other. In addition, cooperation and international exchanges with relevant organizations, both in Japan and abroad will also have a major impact on improving the quality of medical care. We believe that by expanding the scope of activities more interdisciplinary and internationally we can work on complicated problems and actively promote activities to solve them.
While the world has been in the confusion, the declining birthrate and the aging of society have progressed in Japan, and the diseases and medical situations have also changed. In addition, the spread of the Internet has a great influence on the social structure itself. The advancement of artificial intelligence (AI) will transform human society itself and the technology of radiology and radiotherapy significantly. It is also required to quickly and accurately grasp not only the current situation, but also the future issues from the medical physics viewpoint and work on scientific and rational solutions. In addition to responding to the demands of the times, the Society aims to contribute to the development of medical physics, looking beyond the times and further medical treatment. We sincerely hope for active participation and support of members and those interested in medical physics.