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September 17, 2013

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Academic leaders, industry experts, thought leaders, government policymakers, scientists, educators, healthcare providers and entrepreneurs from across the globe will gather at The Ohio State University October 2-3 to share the latest innovations in personalized health care, design thinking and the delivery of medicine.

The 2013 Johanna and Ralph DeStefano Personalized Health Care Conference, hosted by The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center’s IDEA Studio for Healthcare and Design, will be at the Blackwell Inn at 2110 Tuttle Park Place, on the campus of Ohio State.

With a theme of “Delivering Medicine that Matters,” attendees will hear from experts about using design thinking to disrupt medicine and healthcare delivery from the current paradigm of sick care delivered from hospitals and clinics into wellness that is delivered through everyday buying decisions. Experts will discuss the evolution of personalized health care, solutions to enhance the user experience and moving health care from the office to the home and throughout the community.

Personalized health care topics will include design thinking, ecologies, innovation and commercialization, data analytics and disease prevention.

“Like Steve Jobs’ goal for Apple products, we’re interested in delivering medicine that we want for our families and ourselves that combines access and delivery of services to meet consumer’s needs with convenience and precision,” said Dr. Clay Marsh, chief innovation officer and senior associate vice president at Ohio State’s Wexner Medical Center.

“In addition, this year’s conference will provide experts who will discuss how advanced data analytics, complex systems dynamics and lessons learned from commercial and military sectors can focus on the data that matters to augment health and longevity,” said Marsh, also vice dean for innovation at Ohio State College of Medicine and executive director of Ohio State’s IDEA Studio for Healthcare and Design.

Leading the conference as first keynote speaker and discussing the impact of complex systems on health care ecologies is Dave Snowden, founder and chief scientific officer of Cognitive Edge, an international research network. Snowden’s work covers government and industry and looks at complex issues relating to strategy and organizational decision making.  He has pioneered a science-based approach to organizations, drawing on anthropology, neuroscience and complex adaptive systems theory.

Well-known for his pragmatic cynicism and iconoclastic style, Snowden holds visiting chairs at the Universities of Pretoria and Hong Kong Polytechnic University, as well as a visiting fellowship at the University of Warwick.  He is a senior fellow at the Institute of Defense and Strategic Studies at Nanyang University and the Civil Service College in Singapore.  His paper with Boone on Leadership was the cover article for the Harvard Business Review in November 2007 and also won the Academy of Management award for the best practitioner paper in the same year. Snowden previously worked for IBM, where he was director of the Institution for Knowledge Management and founded the Cynefin Centre for Organisational Complexity; during that period he was selected by IBM as one of six “on-demand” thinkers for a world-wide advertising campaign. Prior to that, he worked in a range of strategic and management roles in the service sector.

The meeting’s second keynote is Chris Anderson, former editor-in-chief of Wired magazine and author of the newly published Makers: The New Industrial Revolution, who will talk about “long tail patients.” Anderson is one the most forward-looking and articulate speakers about leading-edge insights on technology, new media and the new economy. He is the bestselling author of The Long Tail, the groundbreaking book on the rise of niche markets and niche products/services as a powerful new force in the economy. His next book, Free, explored the new online marketplace of “free” products, explaining how companies can make money by giving things away.

Anderson is the founder of DIYDrones, an open source community with 12,000 people and three factories around the world, and has also founded 3DRobotics, a robotic manufacturing company that began as a GeekDad hobby with his children. As editor-in-chief of Wired magazine, he led the magazine to two dozen National Magazine Award nominations, winning the prestigious top prize for general excellence in 2005, 2007 and 2009. Next, he became chief executive officer of 3DRobotics, worked at The Economist for seven years in various positions and served as an editor at the two premier science journals, Science and Nature.

Next, Jeff Volek’s keynote address will cover the concept of moving toward a more personalized approach to nutrition and the role of carbohydrate intake. Volek is a professor in the Department of Kinesiology at the University of Connecticut, where he teaches and leads a research team that explores the physiologic impact of various dietary and exercise regimens and nutritional supplements. His most significant work has been multiple research studies aimed at better understanding what constitutes a well-formulated, low carbohydrate diet and the physiological impact on obesity, body composition, fatty acid composition and lipoprotein metabolism, gut microbiome, adaptations to training and overall metabolic health. This line of work has shown profound effects of ketogenic diets on overall health and well-being, as well as peak performance. 

Volek has published more than 250 peer-reviewed manuscripts, many of which were longitudinal interventions of carbohydrate restricted diets. Specific to low carbohydrate diets, he has authored and co-authored four books, 60 peer-reviewed manuscripts and reviews, and delivered over 100 invited presentations on low-carbohydrate diets in various countries at scientific and industry meetings.  He has accumulated an enormous amount of laboratory and clinical data relative to how carbohydrate restricted diets affect human physiology, and acquired a unique knowledge pertaining to the individualization and formulation of safe, effective and sustainable low carbohydrate diets.  

The final keynote address of the conference will be given by Brigadier Gen. (ret.) Rhonda Cornum, who will discuss teaching resilience to improve health. She helps organizations integrate proven resilient thinking skills into their leadership training, and serves as the director of Health Strategy for TechWerks, a small business delivering healthcare IT solutions to both the Department of Defense and commercial communities.  She has a unique perspective, having first established and then served as the first Director of the U.S. Army’s “Comprehensive Soldier Fitness” initiative until 2012.  She previously served as the Assistant Surgeon General for Force Projection, responsible for the policies and procedures to prepare soldiers and units for deployment, and commanded the Landstuhl Regional Medical Center, the evacuation hub for Iraq, Afghanistan, Africa and Europe from 2003-2005.  During this assignment, she commissioned development of the Joint Patient Tracking Application and pioneered use of the Nova Lung during critical care air transport.

Cornum is an expert on resilience, both personally and professionally. In 1991, while serving as a flight surgeon with an attack helicopter battalion during Desert Storm, her Blackhawk helicopter was shot down over Iraq.  She was one of three survivors from the eight-person crew, which was captured by Iraqi forces, and held as a prisoner of war for eight days.  In addition to demonstrating the value of “resilient thinking skills” in dealing with significant challenges in life, her open dialogue about these experiences helped drive Congress to expand the roles of women in combat.

Cornum serves as Professor of military and emergency medicine at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences.  She is board certified in urology, a fellow in both the American College of Surgeons and the Aerospace Medical Association, and is a member of the American Society of Nutrition. Her military decorations include the Distinguished Service Medal, Legion of Merit (with two oak leaf clusters), Distinguished Flying Cross, Bronze Star, Meritorious Service Medal (with four oak leaf clusters), Purple Heart, Air Medal, and Prisoner of War Medal.

Click here for more information about the conference program, registration and other participating speakers.

Contact: Sherri Kirk, Wexner Medical Center Public Affairs and Media Relations, 614-293-3737, or