Faculty from the
School of Medicine and the
Engineering will convene today for an all-day
conference, the goal of which is to develop a roadmap for
how the two schools can put Johns Hopkins at the forefront
of medical technology.
The conference, titled Advancing Technology for
Patient Care and Safety, will be held in Tilghman
Auditorium on the East Baltimore campus. The event was
organized by a new university committee called I4M —
Integrating Imaging, Intervention and Informatics in
Medicine — which is chaired by Chi Dang, vice dean
for research at the School of Medicine, and Marc Donohue,
associate dean for research for the School of
Donohue said that Johns Hopkins, while already a
leader in medical imaging, is not where it could be in
terms of other medical technology, such as robotic surgery
and minimally invasive surgeries and therapies.
"We are certainly not in the dark ages here, but the
goal of this conference is to help Hopkins Medicine become
the world leader in these areas," Donohue said. "It's about
looking ahead to the future, not where we've been."
Donohue said that robotics, for example, promises
great advances in surgical accuracy and precision, but the
technology is not quite ready for advanced human use.
"Imaging modality and CT scans are not where they could be
to drive robotic movement operations," he said.
The topics to be discussed fall into two major
categories: "The Role of Technology in Advancing Patient
Care" and "Advancing Technology Across the Spectrum of
Invasiveness." Specifically, the group will discuss how to
advance technology to reduce errors, transcend human
limitations and improve all types of medical
Participants also will consider the feasibility of an
institute focused on integrating imaging, intervention and
Imaging takes into account such technologies as
X-rays, CT scans and MRI scans. Interventions fall in the
realm of doing something to a patient, whether it is
providing medicine, or performing surgery or a noninvasive
procedure such as ultrasound treatment.
Medical informatics deals with biomedical data and its
storage, retrieval and optimal use for problem solving and
decision making. "It's the understanding of a person's
genomic and medical history, blood chemistry, surgical
outcomes and the like, and how they all interact together,"
he said. "Medical informatics is an important and emerging
field at Hopkins and elsewhere."
The conference will consist of lectures and breakout
sessions, mixed in with networking opportunities.
Introductory remarks will be given by Chi Dang, President
William R. Brody and Edward Miller, dean of the medical
faculty and CEO of Johns Hopkins Medicine.
Government agency officials and faculty from other
universities will present the morning lectures, which are
focused on the changing landscape in federal funding for
collaborative medical research.
The day will conclude with a Dean's Lecture in Hurd
Hall titled "From Magnets to Molecules: A Personal Tale of
Spins and Needles" by Jonathan Lewin, professor and chair
of Radiology in the School of Medicine.
The two Johns Hopkins schools putting on the
conference already share close ties through the
Department of Biomedical
Whitaker Biomedical Engineering Institute and the new
Donohue said this conference is just one more step
toward bringing engineering and medicine closer