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Preview: ASTRO 2012

by Loren Bonner, DOTmed News Online Editor | October 15, 2012
From the October 2012 issue of HealthCare Business News magazine

The American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) will hold its 54th annual meeting Oct. 28-31 at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center, drawing an international crowd to the city with the theme: “Advancing Patient Care through Innovation.”

More than 12,000 are expected to attend the event, with registration pacing slightly ahead of the record-breaking attendance year—2008—according to an ASTRO spokesperson. ASTRO is recognized as the largest radiation oncology society in the world, compromised of more than 10,000 members worldwide who make up the entire radiation oncology spectrum: radiation oncologists, medical physicists, dosimetrists, radiation therapists, radiation oncology nurses and nurse practitioners, biologists, physician assistants and practice administrators. Given the range of specialists, new technologies and the changing health care landscape, this year’s meeting will highlight technological innovation, as well as innovation in the delivery of care.

Dr. Arthur Kellerman, director of RAND Health, will give the opening keynote address and discuss radiation oncology’s place in health care’s future. Other keynote speakers include: Edward Kennedy, Jr., son of the late Senator, cancer survivor, and head of a health law practice focused primarily on state and federal regulatory and reimbursement issues; and Michael Porter, the Bishop William Lawrence University Professor at Harvard Business School, and leading authority on competitive strategy and the application of competitive principles to social problems such as health care. Dr. Michael Steinberg, ASTRO’s current president, will also be presenting at the meeting.

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The exhibit hall includes more than 200 companies showcasing the latest products and services in cancer treatment.

As always, the annual meeting gives specialists in the field an opportunity to earn continuing medical education credit from more than 60 scientific tracks that will focus on multidisciplinary care, quality and safety, various trends impacting the delivery of medical care, and much more. More than 400 studies will be presented through oral presentations, and more than 1,800 poster presentations will be on display.

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