#1 Michael Specter: The Danger of Science Denial
In this talk, Michael Specter warns against the common practice of denying scientific research and progress. Likening the current debate between organic and genetically modified foods to the debate between vaccinating or not, he explains that science should be embraced to prolong and improve life for all people. He reflects upon the fact that modern medicine would not have progressed without science.
#2 Abraham Verghese: A Doctor’s Touch
Abraham Verghese, a physician and teacher at Stanford, extols the virtues of human touch and interaction in the medical field. Drawing on personal examples, he fears modern medicine is relying too heavily on advanced diagnostics and procedures. He believes physicians should make more effort to listen to patients carefully, allow them to express all of their concerns and conduct a thorough examination before using the advantages technology has provided to modern medicine.
#3 Harvey Fineberg: Are we Ready for Neo-Evolution?
Harvey Fineberg describes neo-evolution as the process of making scientific enhancements instead of waiting for time to cause evolution. He postulates that a person could decide he or she would like more creativity and have the creativity portion of his or her brain enhanced. He describes several other possibilities that could be achieved with neo-evolution in his talk.
#4 Alice Dreger: Is Anatomy Destiny?
Alice Dreger, professor at Northwestern University and patient advocate, describes the advances science has made in gender. She questions the over simplification of gender categories and examines several cases to point out how science and modern medicine must adapt to the times.
#5 Paul Root Wolpe: It’s Time to Question Bio-Engineering
Paul Root Wolpe, director of the Center for Ethics at Emory University, engages the audience in a look at the ethical implications of biological engineering. Citing several examples of how this is used, including genetically modifying animals to create medications, he wonders if the outcome is worth the cost.
#6 Stefan Larsson: What Doctors can Learn from Each Other
Stefan Larsson presents a talk concerning what doctors can learn from each other by taking statistical data and comparing it. Instead of having studies done to varying degrees by independent hospitals, he advocates having one common assessment and discussing it regularly among the profession.
#7 Paula Johnson: His and Hers…Healthcare
In this talk, Dr. Paula Johnson investigates the growing awareness of disease manifestation differences in men and women. Her interest lies primarily in identification and treatment of disease in the female population. As she discusses in the talk, her work is a result of personal experience with the health care treatment of women.
#8 Jared Diamond: How Societies can Grow Old Better
Jared Diamond, a scholar of civilization, compares the treatment of the elderly among modern and third world communities. Even with the advancements of modern medicine, he discovers not everyone is taken care of in these communities. He postulates there are reasons why the elderly should continue to be valued, whether or not they contribute to society in the “normal” ways.
#9 Jonathan Eisen: Meet Your Microbes
Biologist Jonathan Eisen focuses his research on the microbes that exist in and on the human body. His talk introduces listeners to the very real benefits or microbes and how they can improve our understanding of certain diseases and ailments.
#10 R.A. Mashelker: Breakthrough Designs for Ultra-Low-Cost Products
In this talk, R.A. Mashelker, scientist and innovator, focuses on some very astonishing accomplishments of engineers in India. He believes that modern medicine could do more to help most people be able to afford, and receive, care by changing the business model in which they practice.