ORL-BAL is an academic and clinical association of four hospital-based ORL centers (Universitätsspital Basel-USB, Kantonsspital Aarau-KSA, Kantonsspital Liestal–KSL, Kantonsspital Olten-KSO). They cooperate closely in the following fields:
ORL-BAL takes responsibility for the teaching of medical students in Otorhinolaryngology within the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Basel. Teaching includes courses in audiometry for second-year students, courses of basic examination skills for third-year students, and clinical courses for sixth-year students.
Specialist training is organized through a rotation program within institutions of ORL-BAL, offering full training of four year’s duration for selected candidates.
ORL-BAL coordinates all officially recognized events of continuous medical education (CME) at the four hospitals, including one or two special events with deeper focus on selected subjects within the academic year.
Research and development is carried out as a multicenter endeavor, by pooling resources such as patient populations, infrastructure, and knowledge.
Centers of competence in patient care are jointly organized, while respecting the statutory obligations of each individual hospital. The objective is to improve patient care by concentrating the population of patients with specific and rare diseases and by focusing on special knowledge in the respective institutions.
The goals of ORL-BAL
The goals are to guarantee and develop competence and skills within the member institutions, as well as to articulate academic needs of the institutions within the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Basel and within the health care administration. The Chairman and Professor of Otorhinolaryngology of the University of Basel establishes the links to the Medical Faculty. He is instrumental in organizing and coordinating teaching and research projects of the four institutions.
ORL-BAL is, since January 24, 2003, an officially registered association. The four institutions were working closely together for more than five years before this official step was taken. The board of the association consists of the Chief Physicians of the four institutions. The Chairman and Professor of Otorhinolaryngology of the University of Basel is president of the association. The board is charged with the planning and supervision of all activities.
ORL-BAL provides specialist training in Otorhinolaryngology, Head & Neck Surgery, and Phoniatrics on the basis of the Swiss requirements, as defined by the Swiss Medical Association FMH (“Weiterbildungsordnung” of January 20, 2003, http://www.fmh.ch). The principal objective of this training is to provide specialist knowledge and skills which meet national and international standards, with the ultimate goal of establishing autonomous professional competence and behavior in primary specialist patient care.
Candidate application for a training position
Applications may be submitted to any of the Chief Physicians of the Member institutions, but will be ultimately processed centrally. Simultaneous applications to several institutions of ORL-BAL are, therefore, not necessary. Applications should contain:
- Letter of intent
- Curriculum Vitae (CV)
- Photograph of the applicant
- Certificate of final Medical exams containing grades
- Copies of any professional evaluation and exam certificates, especially those of the Swiss Medical Association FMH
Applicants will be invited to an interview by ORL-BAL. Such interviews are generally organized at least twice yearly. All participating institutions are represented, as a rule by the Chief Physicians, who decide on the final selection of candidates.
Following decisions are possible as a result of final evaluation:
- Definitive acceptance: ORL-BAL offers to the candidate a training position with commitment to full specialist training. The exact time frame and designation of training institutions within ORL-BAL are subject to later specifications. ORL-BAL expects the candidate to make a commitment on his/her part.
- Provisional selection: The candidate is placed on an official waiting list for definite acceptance. Because the list is kept short, in order not to make unrealistic promises, chances for candidates to eventually pass on to definitive engagement status are good. However, neither ORL-BAL nor the candidates make any definite commitments.
- Rejection: Because of the limited number of training positions, and depending on the number of applications, rejections are inevitable. They are by no means a negative qualification of the candidate. The objective of a rejection is to create clear facts and eliminate unnecessary temporizing.
The candidates receive a written decision of the selection results, generally within three weeks of the interview with ORL-BAL.