Lake Nona Institute is pleased to announce Garmin International, Inc. as a new sponsor for this year’s Lake Nona Impact Forum, which will be held February 2015.

Garmin International, Inc. is a subsidiary of Garmin Ltd, a category-defining company that designs, manufactures, markets and sells fitness devices to help people achieve their health goals since 1989. As a global leader in its market, Garmin is known for its compelling quality and best-value items, including the new vívofit activity tracker.

Garmin joins other innovative health and wellness companies including presenting partner Johnson & Johnson; Founding Sponsors Cisco, Edyth Bush Charitable Foundation, Guidewell and Tavistock Foundation; as well as Contributing Sponsors Florida Hospital, Insurance Office of America, Nemours, PepsiCo, PwC, Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute, USTA, UCF College of Medicine, and UF Health; and Session Sponsors MediFit and Technogym.


On November 11, Healthbox Florida hosted the second annual Innovation Day at Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute at Lake Nona Medical City.  A vast network of individuals and organizations committed to entrepreneurship in health and wellness innovation gathered to hear presentations from the second cohort of Healthbox Florida whose companies are tackling major challenges in the health care industry.  The first place Innovation Funding prize went to peerFit, a Gainesville-based company, for its digital gym and fitness tool.  Orlando-based BookThatDoc won second place for its doctor search and appointment web and mobile site.  In addition to the entrepreneur cohort awards, Innovation Day also featured panel discussions with leaders such as Groupon co-founder Shawn Bercuson and Deb German, Dean of the UCF College of Medicine.

Healthbox is the pre-eminent source of health care innovation driving actionable collaboration amongst inventors, entrepreneurs, and the health care industry. With operations around the world including in Boston, Chicago, London, and Tel Aviv, Healthbox has a strong presence with more than 50 active brands and 20 health care organization partnerships in its portfolio.

Tuesday, November 11
Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute
Lake Nona Medical City, Orlando

Please join Healthbox Florida at Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute for its second annual Innovation Day. A vast network of individuals and organizations committed to entrepreneurship in health and wellness innovation will gather together in Lake Nona Medical City to support the Heatlhbox mission to unite the Florida health care ecosystem.

Attendees will hear presentations from the second cohort of Healthbox Florida, whose companies are tackling the major challenges in the health care industry. These seven companies are led by inspiring entrepreneurs who have been working in Tampa Bay over the last several months in the Healthbox program.

Contact Caitlin Willis, Program Manager at Healthbox, to R.S.V.P and for additional information:

To find out more about Healthbox, you may visit their website at

The Lake Nona Impact Forum is committed to unlocking innovation to create sustainable health communities and advance quality of life by exploring the intersections of wellness, sustainable living and education.

An invitation-only event, the Lake Nona Impact Forum convenes 200 thought leaders from business, academia, government and industry who are driving creative, innovative health and wellness solutions.

Drawing nationally recognized thought leaders, confirmed 2015 Impact Forum speakers include:

Jeff Arnold, Founder and CEO, Sharecare
Jim Courier, Co-Founder, InsideOut Sports & Entertainment and Captain, US Davis Cup Team
Susan Dentzer, Sr. Policy Advisor, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
Deborah Estrin, PhD, Professor of Computer Science and Co-Founder, Cornell Tech & Open mHealth
Tom Farrey, Executive Director; Aspen Institute Sports & Society Program
Patrick Geraghty, Chairman and CEO, GuideWell
Alex Gorsky, Chairman and CEO, Johnson & Johnson
Patrick Kennedy, Former US Congressman, Mental Health Advocate
Daniel Kraft, MD, Heathcare Innovator and Executive Director, FutureMed
Husseini K. Manji, MD, Global Head, Neuroscience;
Johnson and Johnson Pharmaceutical Research and Development
Anil Menon, PhD, President & Deputy Chief Globalization Officer;
Smart+Connected Communities & Cisco

Committed to Inspiring Health Innovation, the Lake Nona Impact Forum creates an intimate experience for thoughtful and collaborative conversation that will lead to action.  The event is set in Lake Nona, a 7,000-acre integrated community that is home to one of the fastest growing life sciences clusters in the nation and is a model for the design of a comprehensive healthy community.

Join this informative FREE webinar
Monday, November 3
1:00 ­-2:00pm (EST)

A new approach to driving individual performance and health outcomes:
How businesses and communities can serve as performance coaches to get results.

We all have a vested interest in keeping others and ourselves healthy and productive. Unfortunately, this is becoming an increasingly difficult task to accomplish, as both chronic disease and the cost of healthcare in the United States continues to rise. It is clear that we need a new direction if we’re truly going to solve this healthcare crisis.

We invite you to take one hour of your day to open your mind to a new approach to healthcare that stems from learnings through the field of sports.

What if you could play the role of performance coach to the individuals you serve and help drive the health outcomes you’re looking for? What if you helped individuals focus on managing their energy, rather than giving them the often overwhelming task of managing their health?

Join Dr. Fik Isaac, MD, MPH, Vice President, Global Health, Johnson & Johnson; and Thad Seymour, Jr, PhD, President, Lake Nona Institute on how business and communities can successfully play the role of performance coach to drive health outcomes. Discover how we can work together to influence an individual’s health and performance on multiple dimensions.

Register here for the free webinar.

Some of the new technologies used in the medical field today sound like science fiction, but they are, in fact, very real. And they are flip-flopping the industry like never before.

Remember back in 2000 when the human genome was sequenced? Doctors had painstakingly lined up all 6 million base pairs of an individual’s DNA. It was, no doubt, an amazing feat. In fact, it was heralded as something that would revolutionize the way we diagnose and prevent human disease.

So, what happened next?


One huge hurdle, of course, was cost. That first genome took 15 years to create, and the price tag was a whopping $3 million. Fast forward to today, though, and we can now sequence a human genome for about $1,000 in a mere 24 hours.

It’s a remarkable technological advancement, indeed. And it’s one way that technology is beginning to provide more individualized care.

“Because that’s what we all want when we go to the doctor,” said Dr. Alex Parker at the Lake Nona Impact Forum in Orlando last month. “We don’t want to know ‘what’s the answer for everybody with this disease?’ We want to know ’what’s the answer for me?’”

As the chair of individualized medicine at Florida’s Mayo Clinic, he is making strides when it comes to personalizing care for patients.

So, this begs the question. How exactly do we leverage what we know about the genome now, more than a decade later? Regenerative medicine is one answer. Over the next few decades, this innovative new field will likely transform the way we approach and treat diseases.

“Regenerative medicine is going to allow the body to heal itself,” said Dr. Bob Brigham, chief administrative officer of the Mayo Clinic in Florida. “One day we won’t be doing transplantation anymore.”

As waistlines continue to expand at an alarming rate, how do we begin to tackle the weight-gain pandemic?

Dr. Samuel Klein takes obesity every seriously. And he should. After all, it’s his job and main focus 24/7.

As the director of the Center for Human Nutrition at Washington University School of Medicine, he is a leading researcher on obesity. And there is, no doubt, plenty of research to be done. Unfortunately, we don’t yet have a clear understanding of this disease, so that can make it difficult to treat.

Sadly, obesity has become one of the top public health issues facing the nation and the world today. In fact, this year, obesity was designated as a chronic disease by the American Medical Association.

Vivian Wang, President, Lifescan EMEA

Likewise, diabetes is on the rise. Why? “More people are getting diagnosed,” said Vivian Wang, president of Lifescan EMA. “As countries become more wealthy, a more Westernized diet becomes available and people become more sedentary.”

With that said, it comes as no surprise that diabetes is the main driver of health care costs in the U.S. In fact, the total cost is a whopping 234 billion, according to Wang. And more than a third of American adults and nearly one child in five are now obese, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. What’s frustrating, though, is that “95 percent of Type 2 diabetes is preventable by practicing healthy eating habits,” Wang said.

“We are experiencing a pandemic of obesity,” said Dr. Daniel Kelly, Sanford-Burnham’s scientific director at last month’s Lake Nona Impact Forum held in Orlando. “It’s a lethal problem in that it’s driving Type 2 diabetes.”

What’s worse, is that is has now moved into the pediatric population. “We’re seeing children with not Type 1 but Type 2,” Kelly said.

Clearly, it will take a multidisciplinary approach to solve the massive problem.

On a positive note, though, “we are starting to understand the behavioral aspects of diabetes,” said John Brooks, president and CEO of Joslin Diabetes Center. “Having that kind of understanding is going to be critical.”

How did we become so fat?

To fully comprehend what comes next, we must first look at the past and how we got where we are.

One problem is the fact that it doesn’t take very much to become obese in the first place. The environment we live in, for starters, makes it very easy. We are all genetically predisposed to become obese. We were geared to be in a very harsh environment.

Sam Klein, MD Danforth Professor of Medicine, Washington University School of Medicine

“We are eating more refined foods,” said Klein. “And food portions have become much larger.”

“There is some data to suggest food intake has changed, particularly snack foods,” Klein said. “The ingestion of snack foods has really increased, which has contributed a lot to the caloric intake. Whereas physical activity has gone down a little bit, but not so much as we think.”

And it’s not just Americans. More than 100 million people in China now have Type 2 diabetes, according to a comprehensive survey published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. This means diabetes is now more prevalent in China than in the U.S.

But if you glance back at China a few generations ago, that didn’t exist. As they move toward an urban society, there have been changes in their eating habits.

It truly is a global issue.

However, we are starting to see people taking action. New York, for example, has continued to try and ban large, non-diet sugary beverages.

How do we fight back?

“While obesity itself may not be lethal, the complications that it drives truly are lethal,” said Kelly. It is now, in fact, the leading cause of preventable death.

One reason for this is because it drives heart failure and numerous other conditions ranging from stroke and hypertension to osteoarthritis and sleep apnea.

“We clearly don’t understand this disease,” Kelly said. “Complex diseases have a very significant environmental and lifestyle component. And the genetic variation evolves over millions of years.”

Daniel Kelly, MD Distinguished Professor & Scientific Director, Sanford Burnham Medical Research Institute

So where does that lead us? Could we harness the power of the genome to help solve this problem? Could gene discoveries help us to take actions that would reduce Type 2 diabetes in the population?

That remains to be seen.

One thing we do know is that objective monitoring and positive feedback play a key role in the grand scheme of things. Whether it’s the genome or the metabolome, to learn more would allow the patient to get the feedback that they need. And many experts agree that this could have potential for behavioral modification and weight loss.

“We have CEOs of companies who walk through walls to get objectives done, they can solve anything, but they are unable to make that small lifestyle change in order to lose weight,” said Klein. “They control their environment – they schedule the lunches, they schedule the dinners – but they are unable to make that change.”

It’s a very complex problem, indeed.

There are many irons in the fire because we know it’s an extremely complicated disease. While it’s crucial that we continue to focus on the science of the matter, it’s equally important for physicians to have a clearer understanding of obesity, too, so they can counsel patients on ways to lose weight. Oftentimes, physicians are not trained in the treatment of obesity. However, they essentially are the quarterbacks for Type 2 diabetes.

Take the cell phone, for example. In many parts of the world it could, in fact, be a great diabetes management device. The key is: How do we use it to reinforce good behaviors?

At the end of the day, of course, there aren’t any silver bullets. It’s a multi-factorial problem. And sometimes it boils down to simple programs. For instance, how do we get people to take the medications that have been given to them? And, more importantly, do we know which medications are the right ones?

We’re going to have to tackle a lot of these issues just given the magnitude of the problem.

“What we do know is how individualized things have become,” said Wang. “We definitely see that with people who have diabetes or people who are prone or predisposed. It’s very individualized as to what they are able to overcome or change or not.”

Looking into the future, it’s important to really understand what causes people to adopt certain behaviors. This is really where the solution’s going to be.

How exactly do we tackle this across the board? How do we come up with better ways to prevent or treat obesity and obesity-related diseases?

Many agree that a widespread campaign could help change behaviors.

Think about what helped drive smoking rates down from 40 percent to 20 percent. Remember when the government banned tobacco ads from television in the 70s? After that, tobacco taxes hiked up. The nicotine patch eventually was created and smoking was banned in many public places.

Just like it took decades for smoking rates to go down, obesity cannot be cured overnight. But there is certainly hope in the long run. There is such a huge focus on this issue right now that we’re bound to make strides at some point.

In other words: “This will actually be a very exciting time to be obese,” said Klein.

We are, no doubt, facing tough times in health care today. But is it civil war or is it evolution?

Imagine being a medic on a battlefield. Your patient has lost his right hand and is bleeding profusely. But consider this: what if you could instantly stop the bleeding by artificially creating a scab?

Well, that may become a reality sooner than you think. In fact, Johnson & Johnson is testing a product right now that can do this.

“You apply this hemostat, and within two minutes you get complete hemostasis, and it can completely be reabsorbed into the body,” said Alex Gorsky, CEO of Johnson & Johnson, during the Lake Nona Impact Forum held in Orlando last month. “ This can really transform the way we control bleeding.”

And it’s just one example of what one company is doing in terms of health care innovation. To really move the needle, though, experts say it will take a collective effort, not just from medical professionals, insurers and researchers across the board, but from the American public, as well. And now’s the time to do it; finding solutions like this has never been more crucial than it is right now.

“These are arguably some of the most tumultuous times in health care,” said Rasesh Thakkar, senior managing director of Tavistock Group, which created Central Florida’s ingenious Lake Nona Medical City. “But instead of looking at these tough times as a point of revolution, instead we engage these times as a turning point in health care evolution.”

So how exactly do we move forward in a productive, smart way? “We’ve probably figured out the single receptors side of medicine,” said Gorsky. “The things we are treating now are more complex. It’s like a Rubik’s Cube, where you have to take numerous approaches to come up with a very different approach.”

That said, Johnson & Johnson has a huge focus on innovative thinking. The company is doing things with lenses on the eye that are “borderline bionic.” They are making inroads in anesthesia. And when it comes to colonoscopies, they have developed a computer that, in real time, measures Propofol levels and lessens the amount of time you have after procedures, reduces the costs of having an anesthesiologist and improves the standard of care.

There’s no doubt, technology and innovation are certainly helping to transform the human condition. However, “technology is only as good as how we combine it with humanity,” said Dr. Nancy Snyderman, chief medical editor at NBC News, who was also among the delegates at the Forum. “We have the chance to marry the two.”

“Less than one decade ago, some leaders thought plans for Lake Nona would never materialize,” said UCF President Dr. John Hitt as he welcomed Forum attendees on day two. “Now, Lake Nona is said to be the biggest economic game changer for Central Florida since Walt Disney World.”

And the Medical City is certainly a beacon for hope. “Because our community dared to dream big, Lake Nona has become a model for the nation,” he said.

With that inspirational note, Scott Wapner, CNBC host of of “Fast Money Halftime Report,” took the stage to set the framework for the day. “Today we’re going to hear from those who have used their own entrepreneurial spirit to transform the way we live our lives,” he said. “Unique business opportunities have clearly been created from this new health care model that we are all living in today.”

And we can certainly learn from those already leading the way. Take Mark Verstegen, for example. He launched API-Core Performance. He addressed what can we learn about proactive health and performance from elite athletes. We marvel at their seemingly superhuman prowess, as well as their determination, motivation and their ability to recover. What is it about their training that could apply to the rest of us seeking optimal health?

“Every day is game day,” he said. But the most important thing to remember is, “we have to realize that we are dealing with people.”

One thing to keep in mind, he said, is that “we need to practice what we preach. Sometimes our health givers are the least cared for population out there. These are the ones providing your services. If we don’t upgrade them, that’s going to affect the outcomes of all our organizations.”

A Conversation with Kevin Plank, CEO Under Armour

Up next was Kevin Plank, CEO and founder of Under Armour, who continued the conversation about entrepreneurship and proactive health.

CNBC’s Scott Wapner introduced Plank as a guy who “literally turned his sweat into a $2 billion business.” Today, Plank’s focus on innovation empowers not only athletes but everyday people who strive for healthy living.

Scott Wapner, Host of CNBC’s “Fast Money Halftime Report” and Kevin Plank, CEO, Under Armour

Where exactly does this sort of drive come from, Wapner asked? “I always enjoyed creating a team of people with a shared vision,” said Plank. “Entrepreneurship is something that we try to teach, but I think you have to inspire the culture. It’s a 360-degree approach. It has to come from all facets and assets of your body.”

And the road is never easy. “Entrepreneurship is a painful process,” he said. “You want to be known and to be recognized, but it takes a really long time for that to happen. In those early stages there’s no one thing. There’s simply the entrepreneur who finds a way to get it done. I knew I’d go broke before I made a nickel.”

A New Era of Engagement: Maximizing Optimization & Personalization to Foster Wellness

Daniel Amen, MD, CEO of Amen Clinics, Sharecare CEO Jeff Arnold, Delos Living Founder Paul Scialla, Fitness expert and trainer on ‘The Biggest Loser’ Dolvett Quince, Tictrac Co-Founder Jeremy Jauncey, and Cleveland Clinic Chief Wellness Officer Michael Roizen, MD

The panel discussion focused on “the person” – the consumer, patient, caregiver — and how we inspire this person using technology to change their lives. The main question here is: Can you change the health of the population with a return on investment that makes sense for an organization?

The biggest problem we have, of course, is medical costs, which are constantly soaring across the country and world. “The only way we can bend this curve to flat, is if we can decrease the influx of chronic disease,” said Michael Roizen, Cleveland Clinic Chief Wellness Officer. “We have the most disease in the world between ages 55 and 65 years old.” The four factors causing this are tobacco, food choice/portion size, physical inactivity and stress. Stress is the most important factor.

Roizen told the audience about a case study of a patient who was able to lose 43 pounds, control his type 2 diabetes and get rid of his osteoarthritis. Part of the success was due to personal touch formed through email updates. “It was our way of nudging him,” Roizen said. And the combination of technology, care and consistency worked. The patient’s healthier lifestyle saved $30,000 direct costs because of the foods and health issues he avoided.

He also engages patients by using MyChart, where they can review suggestive care maneuvers, book doctors appointments, etc., and Wellness Widget, where patients enter their own data on an iPad.

Founding a New Industry – The Canyon Ranch Story

Due to an asthmatic condition, Mel Zuckerman, founder of The Canyon Ranch and a pioneer in health and wellness, was told he couldn’t exercise as a child. So he didn’t. For 40 years. Until he ended up in a “fat farm.”

That’s when he had his aha moment. When he discovered that he actually could exercise, he felt empowered. “I was feeling like I had never felt in the first 50 years of my life,” he said. “I need to feel this way for the rest of my life. I lost 30 pounds in 4 weeks.”

He immediately wanted to pass along this discovery to others. So, he built the first Canyon Ranch resort in 1978. “Most people don’t realize how empowered they will feel if they live a healthy lifestyle,” he said.

Rasesh Thakkar, Senior Managing Director, Tavistock Group and Mel Zuckerman, Founder, Canyon Ranch

How did he turn his newfound passion for wellness into a respectable business model?

“We hired staff that was nurturing and caring,” he said. “The people I surround myself with share the same passion.”

Revitalizing America

In 1980, the world shifted a lot, Alex Friedman, chief investment officer of UBS, began. There was a big push to revitalize the economy. And it worked. America started borrowing more.

By 1987, “It felt like the sky was falling,” he said. And by 2008, when the housing bubble burst, things just got worse. Now, as the economy recovers, the climate is just right for innovators and entrepreneurs. Innovation is creating jobs and igniting economic growth.

Overall, this gathering of 150 of the best and brightest in the health and wellness industry was a huge success. As Florida Blue’s Renee Finley said, “we’re in the crossroads of something very transformative. There will be a tsunami of opportunities that emerge, and Lake Nona will clearly capitalize on this.”