An important mission of WEO is to globally promote endoscopic practice quality and improve patient care. The Collaboration of Organized and Recognized Endoscopy (CORE) units program was established in 2018 with the aim of creating and recognizing a worldwide network of endoscopy centers, from single physician offices to large practices, that comply with minimum criteria for endoscopic safety. These include minimum standards of hygiene, disinfection, and training that are necessary for the practice of endoscopy and are put forward in the 2016 WEO Position Statement.

There are several benefits to participation in the CORE program, for endoscopy units of all sizes. Members receive a WEO certificate of recognition that can be displayed in their endoscopy unit to highlight their commitment to the safe practice of endoscopy, and the units are acknowledged on the WEO website. CORE members have the opportunity to network with other members at various symposia and educational meetings, and they receive WEO newsletters. In a recent survey, current CORE members reported the certificate of recognition, listing on the WEO website, and networking opportunities to be key factors for their participation in the program. Several other initiatives to enhance the CORE program are being introduced, including the designation of a quality champion at each CORE center, the creation of a virtual networking platform for exchange of ideas and best practices, periodic quality-focused webinars specifically for CORE members, and the development of opportunities for CORE members to network with regional endoscopic centers of excellence (COfE).

For inclusion in the program, potential members need to complete a simple online application form regarding their unit and their safety protocols, and to submit photographs of the endoscopy suite and the disinfection area. WEO Education Committee members review the applications on the basis of adherence to the criteria for endoscopic safety. Initial membership is for a year and can be renewed annually.

The continued success of the CORE program depends on increasing participation from a diverse network of endoscopy centers from around the world. WEO is aiming to increase awareness of the CORE program and expand its membership, in order to promote endoscopic quality and safety worldwide. Dr. Douglas Faigel, Chair of the Education Committee, invites all endoscopy units around the globe to become CORE members: “The CORE program reflects the heart of WEO’s mission: to recognize and enhance the quality of endoscopy available to our patients worldwide.”

To apply for WEO’s CORE program, please visit our website.