Keynote: Dr. Ivar Mendez, University of Saskatchewan and Saskatchewan Health Authority.

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Talk Title: Stem Cells, Virtual Reality and Remote Presence Robotics: Surgical Technologies of the Future.  

This presentation will focus on innovative and disruptive technologies in surgical practice. Our experience on these emerging technologies will be discussed, as well as, their role in shaping the future of the delivery of surgical care.


Dr. Ivar Mendez is the Fred H. Wigmore Professor and Provincial Head of Surgery at the University of Saskatchewan and Saskatchewan Health Authority.

As a Clinician/Scientist, Dr. Mendez’ research focus is in functional neurosurgery, brain repair, stem cells, and remote presence robotic technology. His laboratory research has been supported by peer-reviewed funding from a number of sources including the Canada National Centers of Excellence, Canadian Institutes of Health Research, and Canada Foundation for Innovation. For the past decade, he has worked in the use of remote-presence robotic technology. His work in robotics has focused in rural and remote health care with particular emphasis in improving health care access to First Nation’s communities. In 2002, Dr. Mendez and his team performed the first long distance telementoring neurosurgery in the world and in 2013, he reported the first
experience in remote programming for neuromodulation devices. Dr. Mendez has over 190 scientific publications and has given over 230 national and international lectures.

Dr. Mendez has received numerous awards including the Royal College of Physicians and
Surgeons of Canada Medal Award in Surgery, the 2010 Canadian Red Cross Humanitarian Award, the Health Canada Award in 2011 for his contribution to the improvement of the health of Canadians and the Government of Canada Public Service Award of Excellence in 2016 for the use of remote presence robotic technology in the Canadian North.