May events: From neurocritical care to educational assessment

From neurocritical care to an update on cancer prevention, treatment and research on the occasion of Dr. Kent Osborne’s 70th birthday to educational innovation, May was full of events at the College. Read a recap of some of these significant events.

Neurocritical Care research conference a success

Neurocritical care

Dr. Jose Suarez, fifth from right on the front row, received an NIH grant to organize the Neurocritical Care Conference, now in its fourth year.

A diverse group of researchers came together for the fourth Neurocritical Care Research Conference held in May at the Texas Medical Center Marriott.

More than 120 attendees from the U.S., Canada, Germany, The Netherlands, Switzerland, Belgium, Japan, The Philippines, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Hong Kong and Israel gathered to focus on subarachnoid hemorrhage, a type of stroke caused by bleeding between certain outer layers of the brain.

The conference provided a forum for researchers to discuss their work with others and plan study design for upcoming research. The group was able to lay out common data elements, content standards that enable clinical investigators to systematically collect, analyze, and share data across the research community, for The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke subarachnoid hemorrhage and common data elements Project (NINDS SAH CDE Project).

The next steps will be the design and execution of the International Subaracnoid Hemorrhage Effectiveness Research Registry: The INSIDERR Study. Follow up organizational meetings will be held in the next few months to brainstorm and organize the study and an international multidisciplinary group of investigators is currently being assembled to develop this project.

Funding for this conference has been provided by a grant by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke to Dr. Jose Suarez, professor of neurology at Baylor and founder of the conference, and by Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center and the Integra Foundation.

Symposium honoring Dr. Kent Osborne looks at breast cancer and beyond

The C. Kent Osborne, M.D. Special Symposium, “Making A Difference – Breast Cancer and Beyond,” was held in honor of the director of the Dan L Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center’s 70th birthday. Researchers from around the country came together to discuss the latest in cancer care and research, a true tribute to Dr. Osborne’s contributions to the field.

“He is a compassionate physician; his patients love him,” said Dr. Mothaffar Rimawi, medical director of the Lester and Sue Smith Breast Center at Baylor, who gave the opening remarks at the symposium. “He is a unique translational scientist who has really done a lot to advance the field in the understanding of breast cancer biology and management. And he is a dedicated mentor – he gives selflessly and works tirelessly with the people he leads and mentors to help them advance and most importantly, he is an inspiring leader. He really leads by example, he builds consensus and he inspires people to achieve wonderful things.”

“Oct. 1, 1998, was a great day for Baylor and for breast cancer treatment and research at the College,” said Dr. William T. Butler, chancellor emeritus at Baylor. “Kent joined the Baylor faculty and rapidly developed a unique, centralized breast center comprised of scientists, clinicians, biostatisticians and others to coordinate the improved care of patients who have cancer through diagnosis, treatment and prevention.”

Butler noted that Osborne then went on to lead the College’s cancer center and led the way for it to receive designation and then comprehensive designation from the National Cancer Institute. “It would not have been possible without Kent’s leadership,” said Butler.

“I don’t throw the term hero around very lightly – I served for 27 years in the army. I’ve seen heroes, and Kent is one of them,” said George Masi, president and CEO of Harris Health System.

Masi described Osborne’s goal in having no disparity in quality of care that patients received at Harris Health compared to anywhere else in Houston and his leadership in getting this equal care for patients.

“On behalf of the Harris Health family and patients we serve I want to express my thanks and appreciation to you and your entire team for your dedication, your patient advocacy and support of the Harris Health mission of caring for those who are so underserved in this community,” said Masi.

Academies Collaborative focuses on education

The annual Academies Collaborative hosted by Baylor, the UT Health Science Center at Houston and UTMB was held May 20 in the medical center focusing on assessment in education.

Dr. Nancy Moreno, associate provost of faculty development and institutional research, and Dr. Gordon Schutze, professor of pediatrics, offered welcoming remarks, followed by a plenary address by Dr. Jason Frank, a clinician-educator at the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons in Canada.

“It is exciting to see the emphasis on assessment and evaluation to drive improvement not only in our lives but in education,” Moreno said. “With more focus on globalization, we have to remember that it does have local implications and impacts our learners, and we must tailor our education through assessment.”

Dr. Frank’s talk focused on the approach to assessment of doctors in training. He said the primary challenges to effective assessment of trainees are the time and schedules of those conducting the assessments. Physician educators are often unsure of how to focus on an issue and find a solution among trainees while also working as a patient care provider.

He urged doctors to be honest, vocal and detailed in their reviews, and less lenient. “Studies have shown that if a training doctor is never corrected, their career trajectory will never reach a certain level of success, but if early on they are worked with or critiqued properly, they have a chance to improve their trajectory and their entire career, which impacts patient care and future doctors.”

Breakout sessions following the keynote talk focused on various aspects of teaching and learning, including student engagement, effective teaching strategies, using qualitative data in medical education, delivering effective feedback, instructional materials, and more. The conference was organized by Dr. Geeta Singhal, associate professor of pediatrics and director of the Office of Faculty Development.