Aga Khan University Highlights the Importance of 3D Printing in Healthcare

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Professor Robert Armstrong (right), Founding Dean, Medical College, Aga Khan University, Mr Chris Muraguri (second right), Founder, Micrive Infinite, Dr Deepak Kalaskar (centre), Director, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, University College London discuss a 3D printed heart with Dr Andrew Cook (left), Lead Cardiac Morphology and Education, Institute of Cardiovascular Science, London and Mr Shawn Bolouki (second left), Chief Executive Officer, Aga Khan University Hospital.

Aga Khan University (AKU) and Hospital (AKUH) hosted a symposium on the importance of 3D Printing in health care. Speakers at the symposium explored the current opportunities and challenges of incorporating 3D printing technology in Education, Research and Clinical Application. Mr Shawn Bolouki, CEO Aga Khan University Hospital emphasised that AKUH is committed to the provision of world class healthcare in the region through the adoption of modern state of the art technology making Kenya a medical hub for healthcare services.

A team of international academic and local industry experts deliberated on the important opportunities for the use of 3D printing in healthcare. Dr Deepak Kalaskar, Group Lead, Medical Devices and Implants, UCL Division of Surgery and Interventional Science, Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital, London, UK shared his experience in an engaging discussion on biomedical engineering and 3D fabrication technologies including the analysis and applications to solve real-life problems. He is also the author of the textbook “3D Printing in Medicine”. Dr Andrew Cook, a Senior Lecturer at UCL and Lead of the Cardiovascular Morphology and Education Unit at UCL’s Institute of Cardiovascular Science Great Ormond Street Hospital, London, UK, discussed the future of micro-imaging and 3D printing of structural heart defects to assist surgeons in cases of complex heart.

Mr Chris Muraguri, Founder, Micrive Infinite emphasised the importance of Public-Private partnerships and on the potential of 3d collaborations with research and healthcare institutions. Dr Dorothy Kamya, Director, Post Graduate Medical Education at AKU encouraged industry to partner with research and academic institutions to help incorporate the 3D healthcare printing in the medical training curriculum. Dr Edward Chege, Senior Instructor and Consultant radiologist at AKU noted that AKUHN already has the advanced imaging technology that would be important to have in place for effective application of 3D printing. Currently, the hospital is also in the process of installing the PET CT and Cyclotron, the most modern cancer diagnostic equipment a first in East and Central Africa. In his closing remarks, Mr Bolouki also challenged policy and lawmakers to review the existing health care policies, procedures and laws to accommodate global advancements in the fast-paced healthcare technology field.