Mini-Medical School celebrates 10th anniversary

by Vicky Cerino, UNMC public affairs | September 21, 2005

picture disc.UNMC and co-sponsors in 17 communities across Nebraska invite the public to participate in a free health educational series titled, "A Decade Makes a Difference." The series will run three Thursdays, Oct. 6, 13 and 20, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. (CDT).

This fall's Mini-Medical School will celebrate the 10th anniversary of the program and UNMC's continuous commitment to bring Nebraskans the most up-to-date information on research and treatment for a myriad of health topics. Since its inception, UNMC experts have discussed such topics as cancer, aging, cardiology, genetics and the brain, to name a few.

This fall, UNMC experts will highlight treatment options and improvements in three of Mini-Medical School's most popular topics: genetics, cardiology and the brain. Refreshments will be served on the first night. On the last night, health screenings will be offered at some sites across Nebraska.

"This Mini-Medical School not only provides up to date information on research and treatment on some of our most popular topics over 10 years, but also celebrates where medical research has taken us," said UNMC Chancellor Harold M. Maurer, M.D. Dr. Maurer, an international expert on rhabdomyosarcoma, a cancer that strikes children's soft tissues, will kick off the series Oct. 6 with a discussion on how far medical research and treatment has come in 10 years.

The series will be broadcast live from the UNMC Durham Research Center Auditorium in Omaha, via satellite to: Chadron, Columbus, Grand Island, Hastings, Harrison, Holdrege, Kearney, Lincoln, Norfolk, North Platte, O'Neill, Red Cloud, Rushville, Sidney, Scottsbluff and Wayne. The series will be transmitted on Nebraska Satellite System 2, Channel 102. In addition to the Durham Research Center site in Omaha, it also will be broadcast in Omaha to Clarkson West Medical Center, 144th & Center streets.

Seating for Mini-Medical School is limited. Registration is required. To get more information about the series or to register, go to: http://www.unmc.edu/minimed. While the program is free to the public, continuing education credits are available to some health professionals at a cost.

Anyone with NebSat 2 capability can watch the series. For more information, call UNMC Public Affairs at (402) 559-4353.

While the series is free, Nebraska and Iowa nurses who wish to receive up to six contact hours of continuing nursing education can do so at a cost of $30. Contact hours are awarded through the UNMC College of Nursing.

For physicians, physician assistants and nurse practitioners, the cost also is $30. The University of Nebraska Medical Center, Center for Continuing Education, designates this educational activity for a maximum of six category one credits toward the AMA Physician's Recognition Award. Each physician should claim only those credits that he/she actually spent in the activity. The Center for Continuing Education is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

UNMC Mini-Medical School dates, topics and presenters:

Oct. 6 -- "A Decade Makes a Difference" - From 6:30 to 7 p.m., a 10-year celebration reception will be held and refreshments served.

  • From 7 to 8:30 p.m. (CDT), the program will begin with Dr. Maurer talking about where medical research has taken health care over the past 10 years.
  • In addition, Bruce Buehler, M.D., director of the Munroe-Meyer Institute at UNMC, will present "Exploring the Genetic Blueprint," and discuss how genetic diagnostic tests are benefiting Nebraskans and how, through the Human Genome Project completed in 2003, researchers at UNMC are now targeting cures for certain diseases based on a person's genetics.

Oct. 13 -- "Brainstorm of New Advances" - Experts will address diseases or disorders that strike the brain. Participants will learn about complex issues surrounding brain disorders, drugs developed to fight diseases in the brain, and the latest in research, prevention, diagnosis and treatment options available for stroke, Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases. Presentations will include:

  • "New Thoughts on the Brain," by Sanjay Singh, M.D., UNMC assistant professor of neurological sciences;
  • "Countering a Brain Attack," by Pierre Fayad, M.D., chairman of the UNMC Department of Neurological Sciences; and
  • "Raising the Bar in Brain Research," by Anuja Ghorpade, Ph.D., UNMC associate professor of pharmacology, Center for Neurovirology and Neurodegenerative Disorders.

Oct. 20 -- "The Beat Goes On" - UNMC faculty members will talk about the latest tools, techniques and breakthroughs in research and treatment for the heart. In addition, some Mini-Medical School site hosts will have cholesterol, blood sugar and blood pressure screenings available before the program, from at 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. (CDT). Presentations will include:

  • "Recharging the Heart," by John Windle, M.D., chairman, UNMC Department of Cardiology and professor of cardiology;
  • "Tiny Bubbles Detect Big Trouble," by Thomas Porter, M.D., UNMC professor of cardiology; and
  • "Understanding the Failing Heart," by Irving Zucker, M.D., chairman of UNMC Cellular/Integrative Physiology.