CNS Spotlight – Lots in Store for the CNS Annual Meeting in Chicago

This week, we are blogging from Chicago where the 2012 Congress of Neurological Surgeons annual meeting is being held.  The meeting is where neurosurgeons convene to explore the most significant breakthroughs over the past year as well as look at what is happening today that will affect our field’s future through various presentations, seminars, workshops, and exhibits.

Throughout the next few days, renowned speakers will be sharing their insights on healthcare policy and economics.  In today’s post we wanted to highlight some of the featured engagements.  So drum roll please, listed below are some folks we think will deliver some of the best talks around Chi-Town (yes, we included names, biographical information, and the titles of their presentation):

  • Chris Wolfla, CNS Presidential Address     

Christopher Edward Wolfla, MD, graduated with High Honors from Indiana University, Bloomington, and received his medical degree from Indiana University School of Medicine.  He completed his Neurosurgery residency at Indiana University Medical Center under the direction of Drs. Robert L. Campbell and Paul B. Nelson. After residency, he completed a Fellowship in Spinal Neurosurgery at the Medical College of Wisconsin under the direction of Drs. Sanford J. Larson and Dennis J. Maiman. Upon completion, he joined the faculty of the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center Department of Neurosurgery, where he held the Greenberg Endowed Chair. In 2005, Dr. Wolfla returned to the Department of Neurosurgery at the Medical College of Wisconsin where he is currently Professor of Neurosurgery and Director of the Neurosurgery Residency Program.

A member of both Phi Beta Kappa and Alpha Omega Alpha, Dr. Wolfla has an active clinical practice centered on spinal neurosurgery. He has authored more than 35 scientific articles and chapters in medical texts. His research interests have focused on spine biomechanics and spinal cord physiology. He has served on the Executive Committee of the Congress of Neurological Surgeons since 2000 and has held numerous offices. Additionally, he has served on the Executive Committee of the AANS/CNS Joint Section on Disorders of the Spine and Peripheral Nerves, where he has held the offices of Member-at-Large, Treasurer, Chair and is currently the immediate Past Chair.

  • Ray Kurzweil, Dandy Oration

Ray Kurzweil has been described as “the restless genius” by the Wall Street Journal, and “the ultimate thinking machine” by Forbes. Inc. Magazine ranked him #8 among entrepreneurs in the United States, calling him the “rightful heir to Thomas Edison,” and PBS included Ray as one of 16 “revolutionaries who made America,” along with other inventors of the past two centuries. As one of the leading inventors of our time, Ray was the principal developer of the first CCD flat-bed scanner, the first omni-font optical character recognition, the first print-to-speech reading machine for the blind, the first text-to-speech synthesizer, the first music synthesizer capable of recreating the grand piano and other orchestral instruments, and the first commercially marketed large-vocabulary speech recognition.

Among Ray’s many honors, he is the recipient of the $500,000 MIT-Lemelson Prize, the world’s largest for innovation. In 1999, he received the National Medal of Technology, the nation’s highest honor in technology, from President Clinton in a White House ceremony. And in 2002, he was inducted into the National Inventor’s Hall of Fame, established by the US Patent Office. He has received nineteen honorary Doctorates and honors from three U.S. presidents. Ray has written four national bestselling books. The Age of Spiritual Machines has been translated into 9 languages and was the #1 bestselling book on Amazon in science. Ray’s latest book, The Singularity is Near, was a New York Times best seller, and has been the #1 book on Amazon in both science and philosophy.

  • Jonathan Skinner, PhD, Technology Growth and Cost Growth in Healthcare 

Jonathan Skinner, PhD, is John Sloan Dickey Third Century Chair of Economics, Dartmouth College, and a professor in the Dartmouth Institute of Health Policy and Clinical Practice, Dartmouth Medical School. Dr. Skinner is a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research and a former editor of the Journal of Human Resources. His research has focused on factors influencing household savings, regional variations and growth in health care expenditures and productivity, and racial disparities in health care utilization and outcomes. He is a member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies, and received his PhD from the University of California, Los Angeles.

  • Michael McMillan,  Future of Healthcare Delivery from Corporate America

Michael McMillan is the Executive Director of Market and Network Services for Cleveland Clinic, a 6 billion dollar healthcare system with operations in Ohio, Florida, Nevada, and around the globe. He is responsible for all aspects of the business relationship with health plans and employers, including managed care business development, network management, pricing, contracting and direct sales for Cleveland Clinic’s world class products and services. Within this scope, Mr. McMillan is accountable for developing Cleveland Clinic’s value-based approach to healthcare as the organization continues its leadership role within a changing industry. Mr. McMillan is also the President of the Cleveland Clinic Community Physician Partnership, a 1000 physician network of independent community based physicians.

Stay tuned for Thursday’s post and we will be sure to fill your brains (no pun intended) full of healthcare policy and economics insights.

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