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College of Health Sciences Sponsoring International Personalized Care Conference

Old Dominion University will host an international health technologies conference Sept. 18-19 to explore what many medical researchers see as a major new trend in health care: therapies and procedures that are custom-designed for individuals based upon their genetic information and special needs.

The conference, pHealth: Personalized Health Technologies and Comparative Effectiveness, is jointly sponsored by ODU's College of Health Sciences, the University of Regensburg Medical Center in Germany and the National Forum on Healthcare Knowledge Management in the United States. Conference chairs are Andrew Balas, dean of the ODU College of Health Sciences, and Dr. Michael Nerlich, a surgeon from the Regensburg medical center.

Topics to be discussed include personalized health records, wearable sensors, genetically engineered therapies and other emerging technologies. Specific goals of the conference are:

• To explore the potential of new personalized health technologies in supporting self-care and personal health;

• To assess the availability of health care knowledge, including comparative effectiveness, needed for effective personalized health;

• To review commercial opportunities for trans-Atlantic collaborations; and to develop recommendations for best practices in personalized health care.

The conference, which will be headquartered at the Sheraton Waterside Hotel, will produce a white paper and a journal special issue to be edited by members of the meeting's scientific program committee.

"This is a unique European Union and U.S. conference jointly organized on the emerging field of personalized health care achieved with advanced technologies," said Balas. "We are very, very happy to welcome people from seven different countries who are coming to Norfolk to discuss cutting-edge research." He said that those registered include academics, health care industry leaders and government health care officials.

John R. Broderick, acting president of ODU, will deliver the welcoming remarks at 9 a.m. Thursday, Sept. 18. Others from ODU who have roles in the conference include Hani Elsayed-Ali, eminent professor of electrical and computer engineering; Richard Heller, director of the Frank Reidy Research Center for Bioelectrics; Gianluca DeLeo, assistant professor of medical laboratory and radiation sciences; and Tsigeweini Tessema, post-doctoral research fellow in the Office of the Dean of Health Sciences.

Keynote addresses and special remarks will include "Personalized Health Care: Crucial Elements of Learning the Health Care System" by Dr. Wayne Rosenkrans Jr., MIT; "How Many Standard Operating Procedures Does a Surgeon Need? How Much Individual Care Can We Provide?" by Dr. Nerlich of the Regensburg medical center; "Patient Controlled Electronic Quality Monitoring Solutions" by Dr. Peter Elkin, Mount Sinai Medical Center; and "The Future Is Now: Trends in eHealth" by Nancy Girden of Amerigroup Corp. For more information about the program, visit www.phealthusa2008.org.

This article was posted on: September 17, 2008

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