Guest Speakers

Integrated Health Main Session

Obesity from 30,000 Feet: Toward a Realistic Obesity Policy
Tuesday, June 19th | 11:05am – 11:45am

Morgan Downey is Editor and Publisher of the Downey Obesity, the website devoted to obesity research, healthcare and policy developments. He consults with several pharmaceutical and medical device companies regarding obesity. He is  a consultant to the Geisinger Obesity Institute and serves as the Policy Director of the STOP Obesity Alliance – a coalition of business, labor, and health care organizations addressing obesity as a public policy issue. He is also the Health Policy Director of Obesity PPM.

Basic Science/Clinical Research Lecture

Inflammation in Obesity and Metabolic Disease
Wednesday, June 20th | 11:15am – 12:00pm

Robert O’Rourke, MD, FASMBS, FACS
Associate Professor of Surgery
Oregon Health & Science University

“Dr. O’Rourke is an Associate Professor of Surgery at Oregon Health & Science University in Portland OR. He is a graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge MA, UCLA Medical School in Los Angeles CA, the USCF Surgery Residency Program in San Francisco CA, and the Legacy Health System Advanced Minimally Invasive Surgery Fellowship in Portland OR. Dr. O’Rourke’s primary clinical focus is advanced laparoscopic bariatric and foregut surgery, and he acts as Co-Director of the Bariatric Surgery Program at OHSU. Dr. O’Rourke manages an NIH-funded research effort that studies the role of immunity and inflammation in the pathogenesis of obesity-related disease. Dr. O’Rourke is active in fellow, resident, and medical student education. He serves on multiple surgical society and institutional committees, on the Editorial Board for Obesity Surgery,  and as a reviewer for multiple academic journals.”

Edward E. Mason Founder’s Lecture

Strategies for Improving the Quality of Bariatric Surgery
Thursday, June 21st | 10:30am – 11:15am

John Birkmeyer, MD
George D. Zuidema Professor of Surgery
Director, Center for Healthcare Outcomes & Policy

John D. Birkmeyer, MD, a graduate of Boston College and Harvard Medical School, completed his General Surgery residency and a fellowship in health services research at Dartmouth. He then joined the Dartmouth faculty in 1996, later serving as Chief of the Section of General Surgery and as an editor for the Dartmouth Atlas of Healthcare. He moved to the University of Michigan in 2004, where he is the George D. Zuidema Professor of Surgery, director of the Center for Healthcare Outcomes & Policy, and medical director of the Michigan Bariatric Surgery Collaborative.

Dr. Birkmeyer is an internationally recognized health services researcher with expertise in performance measurement, understanding variation in hospital efficiency, and value- based purchasing. He has a long track record of research funding from the National Institutes of Health and the Agency for Healthcare Research & Quality, including several ongoing projects focused on understanding variation in hospital outcomes and costs with surgery. He has served in advisory roles for the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the American College of Surgeons-National Surgical Quality Improvement Program, and chairs the expert panel on evidence-based hospital referral for the Leapfrog Group, a large coalition of health care purchasers. He was elected to the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences in 2006.

Presidential Address

The Future of Bariatric Surgery – The BIG Picture
Thursday, June 21st | 11:15am – 12:00pm

Robin Blackstone, MD, FACS, FASMBS is president of the American Society for Metabolic & Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS), the largest association in the world dedicated to this particular specialty.

Currently, she is a surgeon and Medical Director of Scottsdale Healthcare Bariatric Center at Scottsdale Healthcare in Arizona. Dr. Blackstone is also a Clinical Associate Professor of Surgery at the University Of Arizona College Of Medicine.

Dr. Blackstone is a leading expert in the surgical treatment of obesity and obesity-related diseases, having performed more than 3,300 surgical weight loss and metabolic surgeries during her career. She is also an active member of several other professional associations and societies including the American College of Surgeons and the Society of American Gastrointestinal and Endoscopic Surgeons. 

Tentative and subject to change

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