The first Waterloo Region Medical Technology conference brought the health and technology sectors together to celebrate successes and explore new ways to cooperate for the benefit of patients.
The Sun Life Town Hall at Grand River Hospital’s Freeport Campus was packed for the day-long event.
Participants heard from 15 speakers representing technology companies, innovators, health officials and much more.
Conference participants spoke about:
- The unique ecosystem in Waterloo Region supporting medical and technological innovation;
- The Ontario Government’s health innovation strategy to improve quality of care while using the province’s health sector as an economic generator;
- The development of a “Star Trek” style tricorder to monitor key vital signs, inspired by the work of Oakville physician Dr. Sonny Kohli in “Magyver-ing” medical equipment in a Haitian hospital following the devastating 2010 earthquake;
- The processes of how research and innovation projects are approved for further study at Grand River Hospital;
- GRH’s partnership with BlackBerry for secure instant text messaging between health providers, which has reduced response times from 37 minutes to just 48 seconds in certain cases;
- The work of local technology company Oculys in developing software predicting emergency department waits;
- The opportunities and challenges associated with a fully digital hospital;
- BlackBerry’s work to improve productivity in the health sector with mobile devices; and
- Awareness of privacy and security needs involving medical technology.
Organizing partners for the event included Grand River Hospital, the Centre for Biotechnology and Bioengineering at the University of Waterloo (CBB), Communitech and the Waterloo Wellington Local Health Integration Network. Oculys Health Informatics also sponsored the conference.
A big thank you to those who attended, and everyone whose efforts made the day a success. Participants came away with a renewed energy towards collaborating to improve health in Waterloo Region.
Some scenes from the first annual Waterloo Region Medical Technology Conference
- A full house for the first Waterloo Med Tech Conference.
- GRH CEO Malcolm Maxwell welcomes participants to the Med Tech conference.
- A slide from Communitech CEO Ian Klugman summed up the spirit of cooperation between the health and tech sectors.
- GRH VP Dr. Tina Mah describing how research projects are approved at the hospital.
- William Charnetski, chief innovation strategist for the Ministry of Health and Long-Term care, describing Ontario's health innovation approach.
- Dr Sonny Kohli showing an original Star Trek tricorder, which helped inspire a similar Cloud Dx device which was demonstrated at the conference.