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Dr. Robert Verbist grew up in the Antwerp port area. To become a port-physician was almost a natural combination of this environment with the medical studies, completed in 1984 with great distinction. He specialized in occupational medicine and studied at the Prince Leopold Institute of Tropical Medicine in Antwerp.

He started a port-clinic for seafarers “MEDIPORT” with two colleagues in 1985 where they treat injured and sick seafarers, do pre-employment medical examinations for companies and flag states, organise courses and give tele medical assistance.

He is lector at the Antwerp Maritime Academy since 1985 to train future maritime officers in medical care onboard.

He is Acting President of the International Maritime Health association: a professional, scientific and international association for maritime medical professionals with head office in Antwerp and consultative status at the IMO.

To combine field work in the port of Antwerp in direct contact with the seafarers and their medical problems with international collaboration in IMHA and project work on Health and Wellbeing of seafarers gives him a privileged position in maritime medicine.