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11th December 2011

JSCP 2011

This year again, I took part to the annual meeting of the Japanese Society of Clinical Pathway on December 9-10.  This year, it took place in Tokyo, at the prestigious Keio Plaza Hotel in Shinjuku and the chairman was Prof. Fukui of St Luke International Hospital.

The theme of the 12th edition was: the Future of Multi-Disciplinary Team Care.

The main topics covered this year were mostly recurring with respect to previous years:
1. Critical Indicators (CI) or Quality Indicators (QI)
2. Analysis of Variance, and Outcome Master
3. Pathway of Regional Cooperation
4. Multi-disciplinary Team
5. DPC (diagnosis procedure combination) and Clinical Pathway

Moreover, this year, 2 special guests were invited:
Prof. Shigeaki Hinohara, who turned 100 years old this year, and delivered a powerful message on stage, about the concept of Team Based Learning.  Truely amazing.
Prof. Junichiro Kawaguchi, professor of aerospacial research at Kyoko University, who talked about a completely unrelated topic (apparently, at least): the amazing story of Hayabusa, the spacecraft which made a 7 year trip into space before landing back on Earth, after multiple technical troubles.

And last but not least, this year’s conference also covered the terrible earthquake of Tohoku (Northern Japan) and its consequences in the medical world.

The attendence was more than 2,400 people, less than average, but not too bad considering the difficult year it was for Japan.

Here are a few notes I took.

Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Events | Comments Off

28th November 2011

Mon beau sapin…

image

Hier, j’ai fabrique ce sapin de Noel tout en bois.
Qu’en dites-vous?  Pas mal, non?
Il y a encore du travail pour le poncer, mais je pense ne pas le peindre et garder le bois brut.
Et en plus, il est demontable, ce qui est un avantage pour un sapin de Noel…

posted in Hobby | 1 Comment

8th February 2009

Japanese Society for Health Care Management: 9th conference of Tokyo branch

I attended the 9th conference of the Japanese Society for Health Care Management –Tokyo branch. The theme of this conference was: “Build a structure to allow providing safe and good quality healthcare”.

Keywords: safety, quality, healthcare IT, EMR, EHR, clinical pathway, balanced scorecards.

For those who are interested, abstracts are available here. Only in Japanese, unfortunately, but Google translate should allow you to get a feel of what they are about.

posted in Events | 5 Comments

23rd January 2009

7 rules to become an entrepreneur

I just stumbled upon this video: “7 rules to become an entrepreneur”

I found the 7 rules proposed in this video interesting, because I think they are slightly different from what I heard elsewhere (e.g. by Loic Le Meur or Guy Kawasaki). Although the message is probably the same, the way it’s presented here is nice.

Here are the 7 rules:
1. Outrageously curious, be sensitive to the trends.
2. If it’s something you like, study it.
3. Pay attention to changes in politics and economy.
4. Listen to others’ opinion but don’t let your direction be blurred.
5. Imagine yourself having succeeded.
6. Accomplish measurable goals.
7. Appropriately use people, things, money and information to deliver results.

It’s all very Japanese, because very pragmatic.

posted in Uncategorized | 3 Comments

10th January 2009

Buy a house in Japan! #4

We did it, we bought a house in Japan!

Several weeks passed already since we signed the deed. In fact, it is after we missed what we thought was the house of our dreams, that we found this wonderful house:

Notre maison
Our new house

And now, I would say we are happy to have “missed” the previous one, because this one is much better. It is a large house (140m2) on a beautiful parcel (240m2), with a little garden South. The house is already twenty years old, but it is in concrete with light steal structure, and it was built by a famous company (Sekisui House, 積水ハウス). Built during the economic “bubble” in Japan, its owner did not hesitate to pay the price and carefully chose every material. Great, really.

The neighborhood is also perfect: in an old “bunjôchi” (分譲地, that is, a residential area divided in similar parcels, quite spacious, at some point in time). It is very quiet, with woods nearby. What else could we ask for?

And when I think about it, I think it is by taking the time to visit many houses, and to compare them, that little by little, we discovered what we wanted. A house is something very personal: what I like, you may not necessarily like it. In our case, we realized what was important for us: a large house, a residential area (the neighborhood is almost as important as the house itself) and quiet, a strong construction, a house having its own caracter, something unusual. And we also found what was not so important for us: the distance from the station (we have a 15min bus ride to the station), newness (we actually didn’t want of a new house), services (eg: concierge) which you get in big buildings, nor even the distance from the center of Tokyo (although, all in all, it takes no more than 45 min by express train).

Once we found what we wanted, we had to hurry up: place an offer, and kick off loan requests to the banks. It is relatively difficult for a foreigner to get a morgage in Japan without having the permanent residence permit (eijuuken, 永住権) but it is not impossible. Large banks will generally request to fulfill the following conditions: have a rolling contract in a medium-size company, have cash corresponding to at least 20% of the total amount of the transaction, and having initiated the process to obtain the permanent resident permit in Japan (funny detail: it is enough to have submitted the file, but it is not necessary that the request be accepted, which is good because the processing usually takes a long time).

Then, less than two months later, we were in our new house. Everything went well because with the birth of our second daughter, we really started feeling a bit cramped in the appartment we occupied at that time.

To conclude, I’d say what I learned is to be patient and persevere to get what I really want.

posted in Family | 6 Comments

18th September 2008

Camille is born!

Our second daughter is born yesterday, this is well worth writing a post :)

Her name is Camille, and the Japanese transcription is 迦実 (kamii). Since I am often asked about the meaning of the name, here is a word of explanation: the first kanji, (ka) has actually no particular meaning in Japanese and is mainly used for transliteration of names. This character appears among others in the word shaka 釈迦 (which means Buddha), but the meaning I assign it personally is rather based on the ideogram structure: the central part 加 means “to add”, and the external part Path is “the path”, which I (very freely) translate as “the path of Life”. The second character , has a more obvious meaning: “fruit” or (in a different context) “certainty”. My own translation of Camille’s name is therefore “the fruits of a pathway of Life”. You can find it back in the little haiku (Japanese poem of 17 syllabes), which I composed for her:

Douce pluie d’automne.
Camille, tu portes les fruits
d’un chemin de Vie.

I have actually included this little haiku in the birth announcement card in Flash, which can be found here (don’t forget to turn the pages with the mouse!).

And here is a picture of Camille, and one of her elder daughter Manon, taken 2 and a half years ago. Did you say they look like each other?

Manon Camille

posted in Family | 2 Comments

12th September 2008

Steiner Education

I just finished reading a book entitled “An introduction to Steiner Education: the Waldorf School” by Francis Edmunds. The reason why I read it, is that the kindergarten we have chosen for our daughter happens to be a Steiner school, and I wanted to better understand the underlying thinking.

I am not going to try summarizing Steiner education here (see the book, which I think gives a fairly good overview), but I just want to share with you an excerpt of the book which I felt particularly interesting:

Introduction to Steiner Education: The Waldorf School

[...] Waldorf education is based on man as a threefold being. That he thinks, feels and wills, that he is head, heart and limb, is taken to be obvious. Event that he consists of body, mind [...] and spirit [...] is widely accepted. Yet it can hardly be said that these distinctions have entered deeply into educational practice. There the intellectual approach has grown more dominant at all levels. [...]

The headwise approach, as we have called it, has serious consequences. Is the child brainy, will he be able to pass exams, are questions that weight greatly on parents. The non-exam child, the child in whom heart and limb do not keep pace with the head, comes to be looked on as inferior. Art and the crafts play second fiddle. Thus all the three phases, infant, child and adolescent, are pressed forward intellectually and this has consequence for the whole life. The clever ones are extolled, but where are the artists and the craftsmen who embellish life and give it greater quality? They are rare to find.

But the effects of overemphasis on head and brain learning go further than this. We see how children in the kindergarten lose their spontaneous genius for play. They grow restless, are bored or get uncontrolled, and then they need adults with their thought-out games and learning devices to engage and entertain them. What belongs properly to the first years of schooling is pushed down prematurely into the pre-school years. That means drawing the children into their nervous system, making them ‘heady’ too soon; but that in turn also means robbing them of their early powers of imagination, the source, if allowed to play itself out naturally, of greater creativity in later life. Then, as is seen so clearly in public life, we arrive at adults who fall short of demand, who cannot enter with imagination into the problems, mainly human problems, that confront them, and therefore cannot arrive at the needed solutions.

I personally completely agree with this analysis, although I reckon it may be seen as extreme and likely controversial. But I would be really interested to know what you think about this. Are our schools indeed too “intellectualizing”, or do you think it is just a normal evolution of the 21st century in which we live?

posted in Books, Opinion | 6 Comments

11th September 2008

My daughter grew up in a year!

Last week Saturday, we took part in a festival organized every year at the kindergarten which my daughter will attend from next year. Interestingly, we took part to the same event (almost) exactly one year ago, and the proposed activities were the same as last year.

You may want to ask why this is interesting. Well, because it gave me the chance to observe my daughter in the exact same situation as one year before, and see her evolution in one year. Amazing! Last year, Manon was 19 months old (this year 2 years and 7 months) and you really can see the difference: she was a “passive” baby last year, and this year, she became an active child, who really takes part to the activities.

You can get a feeling through the pictures below (left are from 2007, right from 2008).

Eau 2007 Eau 2008
Vent 2007 Vent 2008
Feu 2007 Feu 2008

posted in Family | 1 Comment

4th September 2008

What are your sources of information?

It’s been a while since my last post. Is “Ma tasse de thé” being abandoned?

I have to admit I was quite busy, among other things by the acquisition of a new house (!) and by preparing the birth of our second child (!!) And while I hope coming back on these later, it is not about this I wanted to write today.

A question which occupies me these times is: How to keep myself up to date?

You will tell me to read the paper, or to browse RSS feeds. I (almost) don’t read the paper, but I do use Google reader at best, but although the tools is there, I realize it’s all about how you use it.

Google Reader
Google Reader

Which feeds to choose? Pierre told us about the importance to keep your feedreader “alive”, by adding new feeds and getting rid of those you don’t read, and I agree. But it requires you to be proactive. I sometimes see myself scrolling from one post to the other in a feed, without remembering a lot from my “reading” (apart being a good exercise for my mouse scrolling wheel, it’s not very useful). You need to throw away what’s not useful. Example: during the “D conference”, I thought it’d be nice to register to the “All Things Digital” feed, but now, I sometimes feel all these topics are not so interesting. –> Get rid of it!

But more importantly: how to find new feeds? This requires to surf more widely, which I don’t do often enough.

My favorite sources in Software Engineering are InfoQ and SE-Radio. I like to download the new episodes of SE-Radio and listen to them while I bike to work. It’s an excellent way to learn (more than being “up to date” because not all topics are really new).

This links me to what Pierre wrote in his post “What do they learn at school?” (waow, second reference to Pierre, he’ll become my guru!) It is even more important to continue learning, especially when you realize you didn’t learn anything at school…

Besides this, I enjoy entrepreneurs blogs, and blogs in the medical computing field, like this one or that one.

What about you? What are your sources of information?

posted in Myself | 2 Comments

9th August 2008

Google Streetview: waow!

Have you ever tried Google Streetview? It’s really cool. It apparently started a few days ago on Google Maps, and it allows you seeing the details of the houses across the streets. Of course, the streets need to be covered, which means the Google car has to have gone through and taken pictures with the 360 degree camera, but it seems that coverage is not bad. I just checked it and found our apartment!

Google Streetview
Google Streetview

posted in News | 3 Comments