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AANS Spotlight — Changing Our Culture to Advance Patient Safety Marks Theme of 81st AANS Annual Meeting

Beginning on April 27, 2013, the American Association of Neurological Surgeons will convene its 81st Annual Meeting in New Orleans, Louisiana.  Through presentations, seminars, practical courses, posters and exhibits, the meeting affords neurosurgeons, and others involved in the care of neurosurgical patients, the opportunity to convene and explore the most significant breakthroughs that have occurred over the past year, as well as future cast what is in store in the exciting field of neurosurgery. This year’s theme — “Our Culture to Advance Patient Safety” — also demonstrates neurosurgery’s commitment to improving the quality and safety of care delivered to our patients. 

A few of the more notable speakers at this year’s meeting include:

• Walter Isaacson — Special Lecturer

Walter Isaacson is president and CEO of the Aspen Institute, a nonpartisan educational and policy studies institute based in Washington, D.C.  Named one of the 100 Most Influential People in the World by TIME magazine in 2012, he has worked with all types and elements of media—including serving as chairman and CEO of CNN, and editor of TIME magazine. Isaacson has authored several books, including Steve Jobs (2011), Einstein: His Life and Universe (2007), Benjamin Franklin: An American Life (2003) and Kissinger: A Biography (1992); and co-authored The Wise Men: Six Friends and the World They Made (1986).

A graduate of Harvard College and then Pembroke College of Oxford University, where he was a Rhodes Scholar, Isaacson began at The Sunday Times of London, followed by a return home to work for The New Orleans Times-Picayune/States-Item. He joined TIME in 1978 as a political correspondent, eventually becoming the publication’s 14th editor in 1996. In 2001 he was named chairman and CEO at CNN and in 2003 took his present position of president and CEO at the Aspen Institute.

• Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords (formerly D-AZ) — AANS Medal of Courage

Presentation of an AANS Medal of Courage will be bestowed upon former Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords followed by a brief address by her husband, former NASA astronaut Mark Kelly and her surgeon G. Michael Lemole Jr., MD.

• Don Berwick, MD, MPP — Rhoton Family Lecture

Don Berwick, MD, MPP, served as Administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) from July 2010 through December 2011. Prior to that, Dr. Berwick worked for 22 years as the founding CEO of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement.

Dr. Berwick holds a master of public policy degree from the Harvard John F. Kennedy School of Government and an MD cum laude from the Harvard Medical School. He is a clinical professor of pediatrics and healthcare policy at the Harvard Medical School; and professor of health policy and management at the Harvard School of Public Health. Dr. Berwick has received numerous awards, and was named a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians in London and Honorary Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire for his role in helping redesign Britain’s healthcare system.

• Chesley B. (Sully) Sullenberger III — Cushing Orator

Sullenberger III is the pilot who masterfully landed US Airways Flight 1549 on the Hudson River on Jan. 15, 2009, saving the lives of 155 people in what has been dubbed the “Miracle on the Hudson.” An aviation safety expert and accident investigator who also is the founder and chief executive officer of Safety Reliability Methods, he has more than 40 years of flying experience. In addition to his bachelor’s degree in psychology from the U.S. Air Force Academy, Sullenberger has two master’s degrees, one in industrial psychology from Purdue University and one in public administration from the University of Northern Colorado.

Sullenberger authored The New York Times bestselling book, Highest Duty: My Search for What Really Matters, and was named one of TIME magazine’s 100 most influential people in 2009. He has received numerous awards, including the Medal of Valor from the Simon Wiesenthal Center and Harvard University’s Humanitarian Award.

• Carolyn M. Clancy, MD—Louse Eisenhardt Lecture

Carolyn M. Clancy, MD, has served as Director of the Agency for Healthcare Research and
Quality (AHRQ) since Feb. 5, 2003. She leads the organization in its effort to improve the quality, safety, efficiency and effectiveness of healthcare for Americans. She also holds an academic appointment at the George Washington University School of Medicine as Clinical Associate Professor, Department of Medicine.

A graduate of Boston College and the University of Massachusetts Medical School, Dr. Clancy is a general internist and health services researcher. Following clinical training in internal medicine, she was a Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation Fellow at the University of Pennsylvania. As Director of AHRQ, she launched the first annual report to Congress on health care disparities and healthcare quality.

Click here to check out the rest of the exciting and innovative meeting program.  And as they say in Louisiana, “Laissez les bons temps rouler!”


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