Local politicians visit AO Research Institute Davos
12 March 2015
On March 6, 2015 two members of Kanton Graubünden local government, Barbara Janom Steiner, Chair of the Finance Department and Christian Rathgeb, Chair of the Department of Health visited AO Research Institute Davos (ARI), under the Directorship of Prof R Geoff Richards. The kantonal government members were accompanied by four of the local Davos government, Tarzisius Caviezel (Davos Mayor), Simi Valär, Stefan Walser and Herbert Mani.
Great weather for showing the ARI off to the local politicians.
Prof Richards initially gave an overview of the ARI and the AO Foundation and along with Irene Eigenmann (CFO/COO AO Foundation) showed how the AO has both an academic and economic impact on Davos and Graubünden, putting Davos on the world map for healthcare in the area of trauma and orthopaedics.
The ARI team took the opportunity to show the visitors the AO Research Institute Davos's Preclinical surgery suite and animal housing (Dr med vet Stephan Zeiter and Andrea Furter). This was followed by a tour of the new prototype workshop which was built in 2014 (Jan Caspar). Further a few innovative projects in the biomedical services team under the leadership of Dr Boyko Gueorguiev were presented, which in the long term should help reduce hospital, patient and insurance costs.
Jan Caspar (on the far right) takes the politicians through the design and production process of prototypes.
Prof Richards added some local spice by introducing one of his team, Manuela Ernst as the winner of the Parsenn Derby in 2014. The Parsenn Derby Davos is the oldest downhill ski race in the world (founded 1924), ten years before the world's first T-bar tow became operational in 1934 at the foot of the Jakobshorn in Davos–Davos was innovative in skiing and also is innovative in repairing bones from such activities. Two days later Manuela won the 2015 Parsenn Derby.
Manuela Ernst shows the AO Research Institute Davos's X in One system which reduces X-Ray exposure to the patient and increases accuracy for implant placement.
Finally Dr Martin Stoddart and Dr Marietta Hermann from the Musculoskeletal Regeneration program under the leadership of Prof Mauro Alini, showed some of the innovative work with human stem cells for cartilage and bone regeneration, including a complex bioreactor system, which is unique in the world in turning human stem cells to cartilage.
The visitors were suitably impressed and will be invited to observe part of the AO Foundation Davos Courses in December 2015.