Thursday, September 30, 2010

Leader in Minimally Invasive Surgery Joins Sheikh Zayed Institute

Dr. Timothy Kane has joined the Sheikh Zayed Institute for Pediatric Surgical Innovation as a principal investigator in the Minimally Invasive Therapy Program in the Bioengineering Initiative. He is also associate chief of clinical affairs and program director of the Pediatric Surgery Fellowship Program in the Joseph E. Robert, Jr., Center for Surgical Care.

“This is an exciting time to join Children’s National and the Sheikh Zayed Institute for Pediatric Surgical Innovation,” Dr. Kane said. “Children’s National and the Institute provide the support and infrastructure needed to pursue ambitious and novel ideas to advance pediatric surgery. For example, the opportunity to work side-by-side with bioengineers to develop new surgical instruments that are more appropriately sized for children’s bodies is unprecedented. That kind of research has not been well supported by the traditional market or in university settings because it is too expensive, but it is sorely needed to advance children’s surgical care.”

Dr. Kurt Newman, senior vice president at the Sheikh Zayed Institute and the Joseph E. Robert, Jr., Center for Surgical Care, said, “Dr. Kane is an important addition to our team of world-class surgery leaders. As one of the nation’s leading practitioners of minimally invasive surgery for children, he will lead our efforts to train current and future surgeons and help us quickly translate research findings into standard clinical care.”

Dr. Kane comes to Children’s National Medical Center from Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh, where he was chair of the Committee on Surgical Innovation, clinical director of the Division of Pediatric General and Thoracic Surgery, and director of Minimally Invasive Surgery. Read the news release.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Children’s National Honored with Visit by UAE Health Officials

Physicians and officials at Children’s National Medical Center, including the Sheikh Zayed Institute for Pediatric Surgical Innovation, hosted a delegation of senior health officials from the United Arab Emirates on Wednesday. Led by His Excellency Dr. Hanif Hassan Ali Al Qassimi, minister of health for the UAE, the group discussed the latest trends and practices in pediatrics and opportunities to collaborate to benefit children in the United States, the UAE, and worldwide.

Other delegation members were His Excellency Nasser Al Budoor, Director of International Relations and Health Affairs and Director of the Health Minister’s Office; Dr, Nariman Al Mulla, advisor to the UAE Minister of Health and chairwoman of the Federal Health Authority Steering Committee; Dr. Yasser Al Nuaimi, Director of the Department of Curative Medicine at the UAE Ministry of Health and Director of Clinical Education at Ras Al Khaimah Medical District; and Dr. Yousif Al Serkal, Acting Director of the Al-Kuwait Hospital in Sharjah and Head of Gastroenterology.

Dr. Gerard Martin, senior vice president in the Center for Heart, Lung, and Kidney Disease, and Dr. Craig Sable discussed congenital heart disease and its impact on both children and adults. They also demonstrated the technology in a state-of-the-art media room, which allowed them to observe a live surgery and talk with a doctor in Morocco via videoconference. Obesity was also a major topic of discussion, as it is an increasingly serious problem both in the United States and the Middle East.

Dr. Peter Holbrook, chief medical officer, discussed Children’s National’s approach to personalizing medicine for each child while also focusing on population health – treating entire populations of children, wherever they are. He also highlighted the important role of telemedicine in sharing knowledge and best practices across the world. “Two-thirds of children who die worldwide die from conditions that are easily prevented or easily treated,” he said. “It’s not a discovery problem; it’s a dissemination problem. And telemedicine helps fill that gap.”

Dr. Kurt Newman introduced several members of his “dream team” at the Sheikh Zayed Institute – Dr. Anthony Sandler, Dr. Raymond Sze, Dr. Julia Finkel, Dr. Craig Peters, Dr. Timothy Kane, Dr. Nabile Safdar, and Dr. Larry Mahan – who shared their gratitude for the generosity of the Government of Abu Dhabi and the people of the United Arab Emirates whose historic gift has made their work possible.

Dr. Mark Batshaw described the integrated approach Children’s National takes to research – applying discoveries as quickly as possible since research is conducted in the same building where care is provided. The delegation also met with James Lintott, Chairman of the Board; Pam King Sams, executive vice president for development; and Oussama Elbaba, Director of the International Program at Children’s National.

At the conclusion of the visit, Dr. Hanif Hassan Ali Al Qassimi expressed his appreciation for the hospitality of the doctors. “We are proud of this relationship, which shows the mutual understanding between the UAE and this hospital,” he said. “This initiative to create the Sheikh Zayed Institute within the hospital is one of the most important initiatives the UAE has taken in the past few years. It will be beneficial to the people in both countries.”

Friday, September 17, 2010

Checking Out the New Institute Space

On the one-year anniversary of the announcement of the Sheikh Zayed Institute, staff and physicians examine the progress of the sixth-floor research space that will house the Institute in 2011.

Back row, from left to right: Dr. Kate Davenport, Deborah Brown, Dr. Kurt Newman, Dr. Zena Quezado, Carol Manning, Pamela King, Dr. Larry Mahan, Dr. Catherine Limperopoulos, Tricia Paulino, and Marie Pichaske
Front row, from left to right: Dr. Timothy Kane, Dr. Craig Peters, Dr. Nabile Safdar, Dr. Raymond Sze, Dr. Evan Nadler, and Dr. Eric Hoffman.

From left to right: Andrew Blair, chairman of the Children's Hospital Foundation Board; Dr. Mark Batshaw, director of the Children's Research Institute; and Dr. Kurt Newman, senior vice president at the Joseph E. Robert Jr. Center for Surgical Care and the Sheikh Zayed Institute for Pediatric Surgical Innovation.

What a Difference a Year Makes -- for Children

On Sept. 16, 2009, Children’s National Medical Center announced the creation of the Sheikh Zayed Institute for Pediatric Surgical Innovation. One year later, the hospital commemorated the anniversary by noting the progress made – and the important work that lies ahead to improve surgery and the health of children everywhere.

In the afternoon, Dr. Kurt Newman, senior vice president at the Joseph E. Robert Jr. Center for Surgical Care and the Sheikh Zayed Institute, and Dr. Julia Finkel, one of the principal investigators for the pain medicine initiative, addressed members of the Guardian Society, composed of generous donors who are supporting the medical center through planned gifts. “One of the best things about the Institute is that I’m getting to put together a dream team,” Dr. Newman said. “We’re attracting people who’ve reached the pinnacle of their careers – and they’re choosing to leave prestigious positions to be part of the Institute. That just shows the magic of this Institute, this dream – the ability to take on some risks and tackle big problems. That’s what Children’s National is really all about.

“It is like going out and getting the best free agents to build the best team possible, which you can do because you have the resources to do it.”

Dr. Finkel talked about progress she and her team are making toward eliminating pain for children facing surgery. “None of these things could happen without the Institute,” she said. “The mandate is to change the standard of care, and it is just phenomenally exciting.”

On Thursday evening, Edwin K. Zechman, Jr., chief executive officer of Children’s National, and Dr. Mark Batshaw, head of the Children’s Research Institute, led a celebration of the hospital’s Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) from the National Institutes of Health. Children’s National is the first children’s hospital to receive the prestigious award, which will provide $20 million in research funding over the next five years. Together with the Sheikh Zayed Institute and other research funding, the CTSA award will help Children's National continue its progress toward combating some of the deadliest childhood diseases.

“One person can’t whistle a symphony alone,” said Jill Joseph, CTSA Principal Investigator. “Starting from the conceptual beginning, this is the spirit of our CTSA -- true collaboration that reaches across laboratory, clinical, and community research settings, as well as institutional boundaries -- to truly improve health outcomes for children.”

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