Schedule for 2015

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Registration for Spotlight Health
10:00 am - 5:00 pm MDT on Thursday, June 25, 2015
Paepcke Lobby
Special Afternoon Session   The Science of the Possible
Is Your Food Safe?
3:30 pm - 4:30 pm MDT on Thursday, June 25, 2015
New food-related disease outbreaks seem to hit the news every week, but it’s hard to know whether that reflects an overzealous press or an under-performing government lacking funds for adequate inspections. Food safety is further complicated by an increasingly globalized food supply; for example, as much as 90 percent of the fish consumed in the US is imported. Activists want the USDA to monitor slaughterhouses more vigilantly, but the big meat processors say industry can police itself. How do we ensure the safety of our fish, meat and produce? Can we trust China and other foreign suppliers to comply with international and US standards of food safety? More broadly, how far should government play in defining and enforcing a healthful diet?
Doerr-Hosier Center, McNulty Room
Opening Session  
Spotlight Health Opening and Welcome
5:00 pm - 6:00 pm MDT on Thursday, June 25, 2015
Greenwald Pavilion
Welcome Reception
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm MDT on Thursday, June 25, 2015
Welcome to Aspen Ideas Festival Spotlight Health! We invite you to kick-off this year’s Spotlight Health with a special welcome reception featuring local food from farms and purveyors in the Roaring Fork Valley and the State of Colorado. This delectable event is sure to delight your tastebuds! Enjoy live music from Massukos.
Doerr-Hosier Center
Evening Session   Medical School 201
Know Before You Go: Traveling for Medical Care
7:30 pm - 8:30 pm MDT on Thursday, June 25, 2015
Medical tourism, once a cost-only issue, has evolved over the past 10 years to meet the changing expectations of those who seek care outside their home countries. Large US-based medical centers are entering into joint ventures to build and staff hospitals in the Middle East and Asia, putting attention not only on quality, outcomes, and fees, but also on making the travel and healthcare experiences easier and more comfortable. Travelers to the US from overseas are generating new opportunities not only for traditional centers of excellence, but also for smaller, service-focused physicians and hospitals.
Limelight Hotel, Monarch Room
The Future of Wellbeing
7:30 pm - 8:30 pm MDT on Thursday, June 25, 2015
How can we create a new roadmap for “higher health?" Based on the latest findings in both mainstream and integrative medicine, panelists will discuss practical ways to experience higher consciousness, transformation, and healing, as well as new social paradigms for how we can interact with our communities. Strategies will be shared on how to promote creativity, innovation, and social well-being.
Belly Up Aspen
Evening Session   The Science of the Possible
Escaping Capture: What Science Tells Us about Beating Addiction
8:00 pm - 9:00 pm MDT on Thursday, June 25, 2015
Addiction has been scientifically established as a disease, not an absence of willpower. Neuroscientists are studying how drugs of abuse alter the brain, animal models are guiding us to new knowledge at the molecular level, and genetic tests are helping to distinguish many forms of addiction. With such research comes hope for better prevention strategies, more effective pharmaceutical regimens, reduced stigma, and new guidelines for achieving lasting recovery. Ironically, some of the future drugs to treat addiction may come from the very companies that also sell drugs that addict, such as painkillers. Is that an ethical problem? Where is the latest science taking us, and what does it mean for treatment? How do we measure success?
Doerr-Hosier Center, McNulty Room
How To Dance In Ohio A Film and Discussion
8:00 pm - 10:00 pm MDT on Thursday, June 25, 2015
A first kiss, a first dance. These are the rites of passage of American youth that hold the promise of magic, romance and initiation into adulthood. For kids from all walks of life, these first steps toward intimacy are at once exciting and terrifying. For some teenagers and young adults on the autism spectrum, the transition can be nothing less than paralyzing. In Columbus, Ohio, a group of young people with an array of developmental challenges prepares for an iconic event — a spring formal dance. They spend 12 weeks confronting and practicing their social skills as they prepare for the big event, to be hosted at a local disco. Working with their trusted psychologist, they deconstruct fear and larger-than-life social anxiety one step at a time by picking dates, dresses, and, ultimately, a King and Queen of the Prom.
Paepcke Auditorium
Special Event  
Morning Yoga
7:00 am - 7:45 am MDT on Friday, June 26, 2015
The mind and body are inexorably linked. Center your mind and start your days off with a good yoga practice! Certified yoga instructors with the Aspen Yoga Society will lead you through a series of stretches and breathing exercises to activate your mind and body, connecting you more fully with yourself. Yoga mats provided!
Anderson Park
When Doctors Don't Listen
7:45 am - 8:45 am MDT on Friday, June 26, 2015
Diagnosis — once the cornerstone of medicine — is fast becoming a lost art, despite aggressive testing that is often unnecessary and can sometimes be harmful. In a talk about her new book, When Doctors Don’t Listen, Dr. Leana Wen empowers patients to engage with their doctors as partners, and avoid the “cookbook diagnoses” that often fail to explain a package of symptoms. The book helps patients paint a full picture of their illness at a medical appointment, deal with doctors who don’t seem to be listening, and get a working diagnosis at the end of every visit. Book signing immediately following.
Hotel Jerome Ballroom
Breakfast Talk   Medical School 201
Bad Deals, Bad Decisions, and Bad Drug Choices: What the Health Industry Doesn’t Want You to Know
7:45 am - 8:45 am MDT on Friday, June 26, 2015
Can you get a better price by not using your insurance? Is your doctor prescribing medication or suggesting screenings that won’t actually help you, and maybe even harm you? What about diagnosing you with a condition dreamed up by a pharmaceutical company’s marketing department? These and other "bad deals" put consumers at risk for harms to their health and their wallet. Find out how to spot them and what you can do instead.
Limelight Hotel, Monarch Room
Breakfast Talk   If We Build It
The Supremes Latest Hit: The Affordable Care Act Survives Another Test
8:00 am - 8:50 am MDT on Friday, June 26, 2015
With the Supreme Court’s ruling that the federal government can continue to provide health insurance subsidies, the Affordable Care Act, as President Obama said in reaction to the ruling, “is here to stay.” Five Washington insiders, including Democrats who drafted the bill and guided it into law, and a Republican who urged state governors to set up insurance exchanges, will talk about how we reached this moment. How did the law pass and survive in the face of fierce opposition? How will it evolve in the coming years? What legal, financial and political challenges lie ahead?
Doerr-Hosier Center, McNulty Room
Plenary Session   The Science of the Possible
Biology and Electronics Come Together
9:00 am - 10:00 am MDT on Friday, June 26, 2015
Biology and electronics are converging to create a new generation of therapies with so much potential that some wonder if they will eventually replace pharmaceuticals altogether. Bioelectronic medicine could offer a pathway to treat diabetes, hypertension, asthma, rheumatoid arthritis, and perhaps even cancer and the common cold. Building on new knowledge of how nerve cells and immune cells communicate, some especially exciting experiments stimulate the vagus nerve in order to tame the inflammatory response implicated in many diseases. If bioelectronic devices can be remotely controlled, is there a risk of “body hacking”? And could the drug industry truly be headed for extinction?
Doerr-Hosier Center, McNulty Room
Before the Next Ebola Strikes: Lessons Learned
9:00 am - 10:00 am MDT on Friday, June 26, 2015
Featured scholar: Sam Kargbo. // Nowhere has the tight embrace of global and domestic health been more visible than in the Ebola epidemic, which sprinted through West Africa and then landed on US and European shores. As the infection threatened to spiral out of control and the world shuddered, we saw the limits of preparedness — from Freetown to New York City — and finally began to acknowledge the importance of strong health systems, resilient infrastructure, a well-trained workforce, and adequate investment in vaccine development everywhere. Why were infections contained in some countries while spreading rapidly in others? What worked in even the most resource-poor settings? Will the epidemic finally encourage needed investments in fragile health systems in Africa? What could donor nations have done differently?
Paepcke Auditorium
Registration for Spotlight Health
9:00 am - 5:00 pm MDT on Friday, June 26, 2015
Paepcke Lobby
Tutorial Session   The Science of the Possible
The Next Generation of Global Health Leaders
10:20 am - 11:20 am MDT on Friday, June 26, 2015
Featured scholars: ElsaMarie D'Silva, Brian Murphy Eustis, Abraham Leno, and Estefania Palomino. // A generational shift is often accompanied by big changes. The vigor, optimism, and fresh perspectives of the young invariably introduce new ideas and new ways of thinking. At home with technology, confident in the future, and better-connected with peers and partners around the globe, young leaders are emerging who expect to be heard and are determined to have an impact. Not that the good life has been handed to them — some have emerged from unimaginable hardship, but in surviving, they have found the inspiration to do better. How is the next generation of leaders already changing health and healthcare? What are their big ideas? How will they be different and why does it matter? UNDERWRITTEN BY THE ROBERT WOOD JOHNSON FOUNDATION
Paepcke Auditorium
Tutorial Session   If We Build It
Mayo Clinic Presents: Preserving Excellence - Delivery of Complex Healthcare in America
10:20 am - 11:20 am MDT on Friday, June 26, 2015
With the critically necessary focus of integration of primary care and vertical integration of healthcare in America, the delivery of complex care has received less attention. This puts the centers of excellence at risk for regression to the mean. What is required of government, private payors, consumers and the healthcare sector as a whole to mitigate against the risk of regression to the mean? How can centers of excellence thrive in the new environment? (Content produced by Mayo Clinic.)
Koch Building, Booz Allen Hamilton Room
Does Women's Viagra Turn You On?
10:20 am - 11:20 am MDT on Friday, June 26, 2015
Seventeen years after Viagra was approved to treat erectile dysfunction in men, woman may soon be able to take a drug to boost their sexual desire. In early June, an FDA Advisory Committee recommended the approval of Flibanserin, which had twice before been rejected by the FDA on the basis of its modest benefit and possible side effects. It’s not yet clear whether approval now will be an important stride for sexual equality, a long-awaited answer to an unmet need, risky medicine, a windfall for the pharmaceutical industry – or all of the above. What’s the science behind the new pink pill? How big is the demand and what is the potential downside? Why do women’s health advocates disagree about the drug’s value?
Doerr-Hosier Center, Kaufman Room
Tutorial Session   Navigating Global Health Threats
The Elixir of Clean Water and Sanitation
10:20 am - 11:20 am MDT on Friday, June 26, 2015
Featured scholar: David Kuria // Clean water and sanitation, those most basic of human needs, are in alarmingly short supply in many parts of the world. More than one billion people lack access to safe drinking water, and 1.6 million people die every year from diarrheal diseases largely as a result. California has a single year’s supply of water left in its reservoirs, and the devastating drought is certain to transform its agricultural economy. But scientists and product designers are thinking in new ways about how to provide this pillar of healthy living. What combination of technology, regulation, and behavior change will put clean water and sanitation in universal reach? From “toilet malls” and filters to ecosanitation, where are the most promising advances?
Doerr-Hosier Center, McNulty Room
Serving Our Veterans
10:20 am - 11:20 am MDT on Friday, June 26, 2015
Thanks to improved battlefield trauma care, many of the men and women who are fighting 21st-century wars survive grievous injuries that leave them forever scarred. Post-traumatic stress disorders haunt countless others. When these veterans return home, they need enduring care to heal body and mind, and guide them toward a transformed life. But high rates of suicide, unemployment, and divorce in military families tell us we are failing to serve many who served us. How can we do better for our wounded warriors and those who support them? Do we need to think differently about the health needs of women vets? How do we create networks of mutual support between veterans and their communities?
Koch Building, Lauder Room