Public Release: 

OECD ambassador and former congresswoman to address NIST 'Bioeconomics' conference in September


WASHINGTON (30 August 2007) -- Connie Morella, U.S. ambassador and permanent representative to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), will address attendees at a conference designed to examine the role technology can play in helping the United States manage health care costs at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in Gaithersburg, Md., on 25 September.

The goal of "Economic Strategy for Health Care through Bio and Information Standards and Technologies" is to emphasize the need to develop and implement a long-term economic strategy for new biomarker measurement and information standards and technologies for the health care system. Conference organizers believe rising health care costs can be reigned in by increasing our emphasis on disease prevention, rather than diagnosis and treatment.

For more information and to register, see

Ambassador Morella was a staunch supporter of NIST during her 16 years (1987-2003) representing Maryland's eighth district in the U.S. House of Representatives. She led efforts to promote economic growth through science and technology and chaired the House Committee on Science's Subcommittee on Technology. A key supporter of biotechnology and advanced scientific research, she is also credited with spearheading legislation to advance technology transfer from federal labs to private industry.

The all-day conference will bring together key government, industry, academic and research leaders and patient advocates. This will help policy makers and corporate leaders understand where technology investments should be made to enhance health care quality, wellness and disease prevention, while minimizing cost.

Dr. Jerry Grossman, senior fellow and director of the Harvard/Kennedy School Health Care Delivery Policy Program and chairman emeritus of New England Medical Center, is the honorary chair and opening speaker. Dr. James Turner, NIST deputy director, will also speak. Peter Neupert, Microsoft's corporate vice president for health strategy, will deliver the keynote address.

Featured presentations will be offered by Dr. Janet Woodcock, deputy commissioner for operations, Food & Drug Administration; Steven Burrill, CEO, Burrill & Co.; Greg Tassey, senior economist, NIST; and Anthony Arundel, senior research and policy analyst, OECD.


The Biotechnology Council and NIST are cosponsoring the event. The Biotechnology Council is composed of many professional societies, including: the Society for Biological Engineering; the Biomedical Engineering Society; the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, the Healthcare Information Management Systems Society; and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers. These societies have a total membership of nearly 750,000.

Cosponsor URLs: Biotechnology Council (; NIST (

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