Mayo Transform Symposium

It’s time again for the Mayo Clinic’s annual Transform Symposium, which I’ve written about here a number of times.  To be more accurate, it started yesterday.

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Some of the sessions today and tomorrow sound fantastic.  Check out the schedule (times are US Central) and pick a way to participate.  Mayo has set up three different real-time remote options: live streaming, an online community, and a virtual environment.  I’ll probably take advantage of the live streams, but I’ll be attending a session or two at the Mayo Clinic’s location in Second Life, as well:

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I’ll post about some of my favorite speakers, but if you see something that sparks your imagination, leave a comment!

[Personal note: I’m back!  My summer was devoted to a lot of first-hand experience of the medical system, up to and including hip replacement surgery a couple weeks ago, but I’m glad to get this blog up and running again.]

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Meeting the needs of child trafficking survivors

When a child has endured sexual trafficking, his or her problems can endure for a lifetime. Seeing this as a public health issue, the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, the Advisory Council on Child Trafficking, and Goldman Sachs 10,000 Women organized the “Symposium on Meeting the Needs of Child Trafficking Survivors” earlier in May.

Seventeen videos of presentations from the symposium are available online. I’m grateful whenever an organization shares material like this so that more of us can learn from it. The few videos I’ve watched so far are interesting and thought-provoking.

Michael J. Fox as a public figure with Parkinson’s… a fictional one

I don’t watch many sitcoms, but the upcoming Michael J. Fox Show will have a spot on my DVR.  You’ve already seen the trailer above, haven’t you? It’s sweet, irreverent, and funny.  The dinner table moment that starts at 3:10 in the video just slays me.

Outside of interviews and cameos, we rarely get to see disabled people on television. I have to believe that a beloved actor with Parkinson’s disease will ensure that the details about his condition are portrayed with reasonable accuracy. It’s refreshing to see a representation of someone living with a degenerative disease; not coping, not surviving, but living.

MSF Scientific Day live this Friday

Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders (MSF) will stream their Scientific Day conference live at no charge this Friday [watch here].  The conference takes place in London but they have also published a schedule in Eastern Standard Time.

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Highlights of this year’s conference include:

  • The keynote speech by international health expert, co-founder of theGapminder Foundation and TED talks alumnus Hans Rosling on the synergy and conflict between research and advocacy. This will be followed by a panel discussion on the impact of MSF’s research.
  • Treatment in conflict and emergency settings including TB in Somalia and hepatitis E in South Sudan
  • New approaches to preventing malaria in Mali and Chad, cholera vaccination in an outbreak in Guinea, and preventing malnutrition in Niger by cash transfer and food supplementation
  • Challenges for MSF including the introduction of a medical error reporting system and parenteral artesunate for severe malaria
  • The role of social media and health looking at the effect of MDR-TB patients blogging about their experiences

Viewers can use the Twitter #MSFSci hashtag to participate during the event on Friday and follow @MSF_UK for more info. The video archive from last year’s event can be found here on Vimeo

Paul Farmer at The Feast

Paul Farmer’s talk at The Feast — with Arcade Fire — on the 25th anniversary of the founding of Partners in Health:

http://new.livestream.com/feastongood/challenges/videos/4460531

(Sorry, can’t seem to embed this one.  The audio quality improves after the whispery first minute or two.)

ONE campaign video about Benin is actually good!

I’ve gotten so used to Benin getting totally ignored (or when it is mentioned in world media at all, getting reduced to a few tired stereotypes) that I didn’t have high hopes for this documentary about one of my favorite topics: the increasingly collaborative relationship between traditional healers and doctors.  But it’s actually really good!  This video is part of a campaign to raise awareness and funds for badly needed vaccines in the country.

Transform Symposium follow-up

As a follow-up to the previous post, here’s what it’s like to attend a symposium in Second Life at the Mayo Clinic Conference Center:

The audio and video are very clear and I can zoom in to focus on just the screen.  This morning’s session averages ten participants, including staff and volunteers narrating the main points in text chat for those with hearing impairments or who can’t turn on the audio stream.  There is minimal side discussion.

That’s my avatar in the grey sweater and jeans on the left, but real life me is busy in the kitchen and simultaneously enjoying Robert Fabricant’s talk at the symposium.

Update: Unable to attend in person or virtual reality? Main stage videos are being posted within 24 hours at mayo.edu/transform.