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Fireside Chat Recap: The Power of the Panel

By Dr Mark Lloyd

"Innovation comes ultimately from a diversity of perspectives."

--- Frans Johansson

Inspirata welcomed subject matter experts to our virtual fireside chat on May 12th to discuss what pathology will look like Post-COVID-19. You can watch the on-demand replay if you missed the live event. On the panel, we brought diverse points of view from academic and commercial laboratories, from pathologists and business leaders in the United States, the United Kingdom and the European Union.

Early into the fireside chat, a single theme emerged and dominated most of the conversation. The panel acknowledged the service and financial pressures augmented by this pandemic, and collectively agreed digital pathology can provide relief in critical areas.

Dr. Marilyn Bui, MD, PhD kicked things off by stating, "connectivity and computational pathology produces a lot of efficiency". Hugh Risebrow brought the UK angle, adding that "the NHS is still only reading 2% of cases digitally, so we need to look for some short-term gains, like connectivity, to avoid locum pathologist costs and bring pathologists' cases to them for increased productivity". At this point, it was starting to get clear there are significant opportunities to drive greater adoption of digital pathology in the near-term, post-COVID-19 future. 

The conversation continued as Perry van Rijsingen commented on how visible "the digital health trends are moving in many regions of Europe as consolidation and specialization pressures are mounting". Dr. Hillel Kahane, MD, FCAP, FCPE brought the discussion down to a more personal level by admitting that while he has signed out over one million prostate biopsies in his career, he "probably could have done two million cases by now" if he had leveraged digital pathology.

The most exciting observation for me, as a host to this fireside chat, was that pathologists were informing medical business leaders, and business leaders were informing pathologists. Groups from one part of the world were informing their peers thousands of miles away. Each brought their own perspective to share. However, they all focused at the end on how they would leverage innovations in digital pathology to accelerate the changes that are critical to success for their roles.

If I can have one regret about this fireside chat, that is we could not bring all attendees directly into the discussion. Of course, this would have been impractical given we hosted a couple of hundred attendees across 40+ countries. Alas, there was only that much that could be discussed in the 60 minutes allotted to that virtual event.

Nevertheless, the entire Inspirata team strongly believes we need to continue this exchange of ideas, forging the path towards which our profession needs to evolve in order to address patient needs and social-economic realities post-COVID-19. Therefore, we encourage you to consider joining the discussion by contributing to this blog. Simply click here to submit your blog post proposal and a member of our team will be in touch with you shortly.

Tags: Post-COVID-19, pathology, digital pathology, future