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School News

November 12, 2007

Healthcare Conference Highlights Innovation on Grand Scale

Keynote speakers Paul Keckley of Deloitte and David Holveck of Johnson & Johnson call for radical, systemic changes to the healthcare industry and the medical profession.


Addressing the future of a field that, in the words of Dean Glenn Hubbard, is “riddled with opportunity, as much as challenges,” the Health Care Industry Association (HCIA) hosted its fourth annual conference on November 9, titled “Healthcare 20/20: Strategic Perspectives on the Future Healthcare Landscape.”

Held in Casa Italiana, the sold-out conference brought together executives, practitioners, faculty members and students to exchange insight on the industry that is now the largest in the United States, comprising 16 percent of the GDP. The conference boasted a leading-edge roster of guest speakers and a 50 percent increase in sponsors and attendees from last year.

“This program has taken a very special and important leap in my view,” said Hubbard, praising the work of the Healthcare and Pharmaceutical Management Program, established last August, and the leadership of Cliff Cramer, program director and adjunct professor at Columbia Business School.

Paul H. Keckley, PhD, executive director of the Deloitte Center for Health Solutions, delivered the morning’s keynote address. Drawing from his experience as senior executive and faculty member at Vanderbilt University’s Medical Center, Keckley called for systemic changes within the practice of medicine. By transcending “the silos of self-interest,” he said, it would be possible to arrive at a high-quality evidence-based healthcare system that removes supply-driven demand, shifts the focus to coordinated care and engages consumers in self-care management.

David Holveck, president of Johnson & Johnson Development Corp., presented the afternoon’s keynote address. Emphasizing the importance of establishing new industry models for innovation, Holveck also heralded the imminence of large-scale change. “The time has come to rethink all we know, or all we thought we knew, about innovation and growth,” he said.

“Healthcare 20/20” featured panel discussions on deal-making strategies, cost-management innovation, emerging markets and pharmaceutical marketing. There was also a career fair at the end of the day, attended by the event’s 15 corporate sponsors.

Cramer said that increased participation allowed the conference to make great strides this year, with double the number of breakout panel discussions, broader topic areas and enhanced opportunities for student networking.

The heightened scale, he said, reflects an “escalation of interest among business students in the healthcare sector and in Columbia Business School’s new healthcare initiative.”