April 3 2017

Essentials of the Michael Berger award

Prof André Knottnerus has been given the prestigeous Michael Berger award in Düsseldorf.

The former director of the Department of Metabolic Diseases and Nutrition of the University Hospital Düsseldorf, Prof. Dr. med. Dres. h.c.mult. Michael Berger, formerly held numerous scientific positions, inter alia Dean of the Medical Faculty of the Heinrich-Heine University Düsseldorf as well as President of German and European Diabetes Associations.

In the year 1985 Michael Berger established at his department the WHO Collaborating Centre for Diabetes Treatment and Prevention, and in 2000 together with Prof. Dr. Bernd Richter the Cochrane Metabolic and Endocrine Disorders Review Group.

He was the recipient of the highest honours within diabetology, like the Claude Bernard Medal of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes (EASD) und the Harold Rifikin Award of the American Diabetes Association (ADA).

Michael Berger was the co-founder of the German Network for Evidence-based Medicine and placed this momentum in the centre of his clinical and teaching activities.

He always focused on the patient in his entire individuality and his own preferences, and thereby on patient-informed decision making in every patient-doctor encounter. He made a considerable contribution on national and international levels to establish patient self-management of several chronic diseases as an integral part of conventional health care. Michael Berger died on August 18th, 2002.

To honour Michael Berger and his deep-rooted patient-centredness, as well as his critical reflections on mainstream medicine coupled with continous self-reflection and a good sense of humour, the Michael Berger award is thought to acknowledge the laureate’s outstanding work reflecting this attitude. Former award winners were Sir Nicholas Wald (UK), Hilda Bastian (USA), Peter Götzsche (Denmark), Sir Iain Chalmers (UK) and Peter Sawicki (Germany).