Friday, April 27, 2012

Helping today's kids become tomorrow's doctors and engineers

This weekend, Children's National Medical Center is participating in a great event in Washington, DC: The USA Science and Engineering Festival. The idea behind the event is to help kids find new and exciting ways to experience science and technology. Most of our country's leading scientific institutions, from the National Science Foundation to NASA, will be there with hands on activities for children of all ages.

Children's National is actively involved in trying to inspire the next generation of doctors, scientists, and engineers, so our area (booth #1127 in Hall C) aims to let kids "Be a Doctor for a Day."

The "Being Me" program (which is funded by a prestigious NIH Science and Educational Partnership Award (SEPA)) will teach kids about asthma by giving them a chance to make mucus, guide them through how to deal with bullies, and show them some other important ways to stay healthy.

The Division of Orthopaedic Surgery and Sports Medicine has an array of games, puzzles, and activities to make kids understand the importance of strong bones.
The Sheikh Zayed Institute will let them perform laparoscopic surgery tasks using one of the simulators that trains real surgeons.

There are so many fun science activities that the event takes up three full halls at the Washington Convention Center in downtown DC. It is open Saturday and Sunday and free to everyone. If you plan to attend, be sure to stop by! 

Sunday, April 15, 2012

TEDMED in Washington, DC

TEDMED, the health and medical focused subset of the highly successful TED series of talks and lectures, was held here in Washington, DC, this past week. Children’s National broadcasted all the sessions live in our auditorium. It was an exciting opportunity for us, because we were able to bring these health innovation talks directly to our employees. You can read about the meeting via Twitter at #TEDMED and @TEDMED.

When Dr. Kurt Newman, our President and CEO, welcomed guests who gathered at Children’s National to view the opening session of TEDMED on Tuesday night, he connected the purpose of TEDMED to the mission of Children’s National. “We’ve been thinking bigger and thinking differently about how we can improve children’s health, to push the bounds of what we can do….We aren’t just focusing on treating sick kids, but we want to lead, prevent, and teach people how to be healthy.” See here and here for some examples.

As they intend to, the sessions are leading to much discussion throughout the hospital about how the ideas presented can help us grow our innovative thinking into new and better ways to care for children.

Many official medical and technology bloggers were liveblogging and summarizing each day’s events. Here are a few links to keep you up to speed.