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NYIT hosts interactive conference on the common language of health through education

United Arab Emirates: Wednesday, April 30 - 2008 @ 16:12

The conference took an eclectic look at the close relationship between health and education, examining the wider topic before exploring educational organization, new developments in treatment and Problem Based Learning.

Speaking alongside Dr. Ross-Lee on these subjects were her colleagues from NYIT, each an expert in their respective field and representing various faculties of the Institute. After the four presentations, the floor was opened up to questions, allowing participants to benefit from the expertise and experience of each speaker.

Dr. Ross-Lee discussed “The Common Language of Health through Education”, drawing on more than 25 years’ experience garnered at the medical departments of some of the most respected educational institutes in the United States.

Dr. Ross-Lee spoke of the aims of New York College of Osteopathic Medicine (NYCOM), the second largest medical school in the United States and a school of NYIT: “Medicine is not just what we do; it is a part of who we are – like our ethnicity and gender. Our educational goals are to take some of the brightest students that the educational systems of the world produces and transform them into individuals who ‘value’ the human condition and who have the knowledge and clinical skills necessary to engage the health circumstances of individuals, families, communities, and populations. For us, this defines what a competent, high quality physician and health professional MUST be. It makes healthcare a defining part of who each student will become.”

The presentation on “Educational organization of United States medical schools” was given by Dr. Thomas A. Scandalis, Dean, New York College of Osteopathic Medicine (NYCOM) of NYIT.

Dr. Scandalis is uniquely qualified to talk on this subject: he has 23 years of personal experience at the school – four as a student and 19 as a faculty member. His varied background – he has served as clinical specialist and combat medic, chair of NYCOM’s Department of Family Medicine, and as team physician for the U.S. National Boxing Team – brought anecdotal insight and candor to the presentation.

A key point of this presentation was that is important for students not only to be competent, but to be able to demonstrate their competency; one way in which NYCOM facilitates this is through simulations using ‘standardized patients’. Commenting, Dr. Scandalis added: “The transition at NYIT’s New York College of Osteopathic Medicine (NYCOM) from a lecture-based to a learning-based process is essentially the move from passive to active learning. NYCOM is focusing on maturation; the foundations are there for increasing distinction, in 3 areas: quality of education; research; and clinical services.”

Dr. Chukuka Enwemeka, NYIT’s Dean, School of Health Professions, Behavioral, and Life Sciences, covered research in his talk on “Advances in laser photoengineering of tissue repair processes”. Dr. Enwemeka is the author of more than 55 research papers, monographs and book chapters; his participation in today’s event represented a rare opportunity to tap the vast experience of one of the world’s foremost authorities in the area of photoengineering.

Dr. Enwemeka’s presentation gave details of how non-UV light can be used to kill MRSA bacteria that are resistant to antibacterial drugs, and how a combination of UV and non-UV light can be used to not only fight these bacteria but promote healing. One particular application that is relevant to the UAE, with a high number of diabetics, is to treat both the cause of infected mouth ulcers but also promote their healing. Other industrial applications of this technology could include treatment of polluted water, improving the growth of plants, and treatment of wounds in oxygen-sparse environments (such as submarines or space stations). ***

The application and benefits of Problem Based Learning (PBL) were fully explored by Dr. Edward A. Gotfried, Associate Professor of Surgery and Director of Global Health, NYIT, in his presentation “An approach to clinical reasoning using Problem Based Learning”. Dr. Gotfried has a proven track record in this field, having played a major part in developing the very successful problem-based learning curriculum of Ohio University College of Osteopathic Medicine.

Commenting afterwards, Dr. Gotfried said, “Problem Based Learning (PBL) students get the opportunity to FLY through the educational process, regardless of their area of study. PBL can be applied to any discipline, and its students become fully independent; they reason through problems, recall and apply information, recognize when their skills or knowledge are not adequate, and acquire new skills and knowledge as they need it.”

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Wednesday, April 30- 2008 @ 16:12 UAE local time (GMT+4) Replication or redistribution in whole or in part is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Mediaquest FZ LLC.

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