IAPM Conference draws international physicists to Waterford

001_UPMC_020416Over 130 physicists converged in Waterford earlier this month for the Irish Association of Physicists in Medicine (IAPM) 7th Annual Scientific Meeting, which was held at the Tower Hotel.

Waterford native and Principal Physicist at UPMC Whitfield Cancer Centre, Amanda Barry was delighted to bring the conference to Waterford under her tenure as President of the IAPM.  “It is a great honour to host this conference of international delegates and speakers in Waterford and I am very proud to be able to showcase what a wonderful vibrant and accessible place Waterford is.  Obviously, being my home city, I am particularly proud to call this place home and now 130 delegates will have the opportunity to experience and enjoy Ireland’s oldest city.”

The two-day event featured an interactive session on Innovation and Enterprise for scientists in healthcare, academia and commercial enterprise and was moderated by David McCullagh, RTE’s political correspondent and presenter of current affairs programme Prime Time.

On the second day of the scientific meeting, speakers and delegates were welcomed by the Mayor of Waterford City and County, Cllr. John Cummins, who said, “Many of today’s sponsors are leading manufacturers in healthcare and I encourage any of you that are eyeing expansion to consider Waterford as a location to do business.  We are leading the way in terms of growth in life sciences and pharmaceuticals with recent large scale announcements and expansions in some of the great companies that call Waterford home.” 002_UPMC_020416 003_UPMC_020416

Guest speakers included Professor Saiful Huq, Director of Medical Physics at the Department of Radiation Oncology at UPMC CancerCenter and Professor of Radiation Oncology at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, who spoke on the topic “New paradigms and future challenges in radiation oncology.”

Professor Mats Danielsson, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm addressed the delegates on the topic of “Detectors and spectral imaging for clinical imaging in CT.”

Regarding the role of the IAPM, Amanda added, “The IAPM is dedicated to advancing physics in healthcare, which ultimately benefits the good of the general public. As President I aim to support the efforts of our membership in promoting Medical Physics in Ireland and abroad, by participating and engaging directly with our own government healthcare departments and groups such as the Health and Social Care Professions Advisory Group and European and International organisations.”

“I believe working together and with other healthcare professions and organisations enables a multi-disciplinary approach to decision making to be adopted so that ultimately rounded, well-considered and robust solutions to health-care can be provided.”

Medical Physics is a branch of applied physics which uses scientific (mainly physics) principles, methods and techniques in practice and research for the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of human diseases with a specific goal of improving human health and well-being.

Another of Amanda’s priorities as IAPM president, includes working to ensure the profession is recognised, by establishing a registration route for medical physicists in Ireland, to ensure safety for practitioners and their patients.

Amanda, in her role as President of the IAPM, will continue to advocate excellence in clinical application through collaboration with local academic institutions, including Waterford Institute of Technology.

For further information about the Irish Association of Physicists in Medicine visit www.theiapm.ie