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2022 Critical Care Congress Thought Leaders: The Future of Critical Care

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11/22/2021

Rebecca A. Aslakson, MD, PhD, and Michelle N. Gong, MD, MS, will present a thought leader session titled “The Future of Critical Care: Artificial Intelligence to Zoom Family Meetings” during the 2022 Critical Care Congress.

Rebecca A. Aslakson, MD, PhD

Rebecca A. Aslakson, MD, PhD, spent the past year co-leading a Society of Critical Care Medicine (SCCM) task force charged with exploring what the future of critical care might look like. Task force members were encouraged to think big and, as group members talked about potential innovations, Dr. Aslakson caught herself feeling like she was in a futuristic movie or TV show.

“Personally, I have definitely had a few, ‘Wait, that is just too Flash Gordon or The Jetsons crazy’ moments,” she said, “but then task force colleagues [explained] that many of these innovations are already possible—albeit nascent—and will likely soon be ready for translation into more widespread critical care practice.”
 
Dr. Aslakson, who is a critical care anesthesiologist and palliative care physician and researcher at Stanford University Medical Center, will present, along with Michelle N. Gong, MD, MS, the task force findings during the 2022 Critical Care Congress in a thought leader session titled “The Future of Critical Care: Artificial Intelligence to Zoom Family Meetings.”
 
While the session is about looking forward, Dr. Aslakson said it is impossible to do that without recognizing the ongoing realities of the COVID-19 pandemic. “The pandemic continues to change so much of what we do,” she said. “Instilling humility in each of us, the pandemic has starkly delineated both the possibilities and the limitations for technology in the ICU.”
 
Dr. Aslakson believes that the pandemic, and specifically the anguish and distress felt by patients, family members, and critical care professionals, has clarified the importance of compassionate critical care and the role family members play in the delivery of that care. More than any new technology, it is that focus on empathy and support that Dr. Aslakson has her eyes set on.
 
“I’m looking to 2022 and beyond for novel and more effective innovations toward an overall goal of better integrating patient and family member voice, presence, values, and goals into our ICU critical care practices,” she said. She is excited to deliver her talk with Dr. Gong.
 
“Congress is a chance to remind myself what a valuable community I get the privilege to be a part of,” she said.

 

Michelle Ng Gong, MD, MS

Scrolling through the tweets of Michelle Ng Gong, MD, MS, shows a collection of tweets congratulating colleagues on distinct accomplishments as well as informative opinions on topics ranging from COVID-19 vaccines to discrimination in medicine. This tweet from Dr. Gong can serve as a life lesson for anyone, but particularly for healthcare professionals: “True for STEM. True for medicine. True for everything worthwhile . . . Things sometimes take time. Perseverance and willingness to learn and improve is key.”
 
Dr. Gong, chief of critical care medicine and pulmonary medicine at Albert Einstein College of Medicine and Montefiore Medical Center, believes that willingness to learn and improve is particularly relevant for critical care professionals when it comes to moving the profession forward. “The future is shaped by the present,” she said, “and we, as critical care professionals, need to make sure that we are integral to the development, testing, application and use of new advances and technology in critical care.”
 
Dr. Gong will partner with Rebecca A. Aslakson, MD, PhD, to lead a thought leader session at SCCM’s 2022 Critical Care Congress titled “The Future of Critical Care: Artificial Intelligence to Zoom Family Meetings.” The presentation will describe the thoughts of an SCCM task force charged with exploring what the future of critical care might look like from the standpoint of technology and patient care.
 
Dr. Gong is recognized nationally and internationally for her expertise in critical care and management of acute respiratory failure and acute respiratory distress syndrome. Her research projects influence her patient care, and her patients motivate her research. “I love the integration of research into clinical care to ultimately improve the outcomes of our patients and the delivery of critical care to the patients in the hospital,” she said. “I feel both challenged and gratified to have the opportunities to work with hospital leadership on developing solutions for and improving outcomes of our sickest patients. I love the ability to translate questions that arise from clinical care and operation to research questions that can be investigated with rigor and then translated back to clinical practice.”
 
Looking forward, Dr. Gong believes there are questions that should be asked about how technology can better assist healthcare professionals in critical care. She hopes that those in the critical care community get to not only ask those questions but also assist in the process of answering them. “We need to play an active role in developing, testing, validating, and implementing new technology and information to ensure that, in the future, they become useful tools to enable more personalized patient-centered care in critical illness,” Dr. Gong said. “We want to make sure [new technologies] would help us take care of patients and we need to make sure we shape that future.”
 
Dr. Aslakson and Dr. Gong are two of the many thought leaders who will be presenting during the 2022 Critical Care Congress, which is now being held virtually Monday, April 18 through Thursday, April 21, 2022!
 
Join SCCM for the 2022 Critical Care Congress and dive into the latest knowledge and research with livestreamed sessions, interactive opportunities, and content access for one year.  Learn More


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Posted: 11/22/2021 | 0 comments


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