Expert Coronavirus Updates with Mara Aspinall | Session 25

It is now well proven that accurate diagnoses help prevent the spread of COVID-19, but there is still much work needed in this arena to help battle this deadly virus.

In this episode, we have Diagnostics Evangelist Mara Aspinall with us to more deeply share the vital role of diagnostics and their power to help us overcome this crisis.

Mara is a pioneering healthcare industry leader and is the Managing Director of BlueStone Venture Partners, a venture fund investing in life science technology companies, and the Co-founder of the Biomedical Diagnostics Program at Arizona State University.

During our time together, Mara highlights the significance of diagnosis and testing and how she helps lead the Arizona State University’s COVID-19 Diagnostics Commons’ critical efforts, in conjunction with the Rockefeller Foundation, which is helping to empower many global organizations to work together to overcome this public health catastrophe.

Episode Highlights:

  • Diagnostics in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Overview of ASU’s COVID-19 Diagnostics Commons
  • The partnership between Arizona State University and the Rockefeller Foundation
  • COVID-19 Diagnostics Commons resources, including their new T3 Blog

About Our Guest:

Aspinall is a healthcare industry leader and pioneer committed to active civic involvement. She is Managing Director and Co-Founder of BlueStone Venture Partners, a venture fund investing in life sciences technology companies in the US Southwest. She is also Managing Director of the Health Catalysts Group, a consulting firm dedicated to the growth of diagnostics and health information technology firms, publishing the popular Health Catalysts Diagnostics Year in Review. She is a member of the Board of Directors of Abcam plc (ABC), Allscripts (MDRX), Castle Biosciences (CSTL), Orasure (OSUR), and Blue Cross Blue Shield Arizona. Most recently, Aspinall was certified in Cybersecurity Oversight from Carnegie Mellon University.

Aspinall is co-author of The Rockefeller Foundation National COVID-19 National Testing & Contact Tracing Action Plan and curator for – the most comprehensive database of COVID related tests on the market or in development worldwide.

As President and CEO of Ventana Medical Systems, a billion-dollar division of The Roche Group, (now Roche Tissue Diagnostics) Aspinall led her world-class team to new financial success, more than two dozen major instrument and assay launches as well as global leadership in companion diagnostics.

Previously, Aspinall spent 13 years at Genzyme Corporation where she served as President of Genzyme Genetics and Genzyme Pharmaceuticals.Genzyme Genetics was a leading provider of diagnostic testing and genetic counseling in the oncology and reproductive markets. Aspinall transformed the business from a small specialized player to one of the top five laboratories in the country while setting the industry standard for quality testing. The business was sold to LabCorp for nearly $1billion.Previously, she led Genzyme Pharmaceuticals and its transformation to an international leader in specialized pharmaceutical ingredient manufacturing.

A leader in educating payers and policymakers on personalized medicine, she served on the Health and Human Services Secretary’s Advisory Council on Genetics, Health & Society (SACGHS) in the Obama and Bush administrations. With a passion for education about the importance of diagnostics in healthcare, Aspinall co-founded the Biomedical Diagnostics program at Arizona State University, the first and only program dedicated to Diagnostics as an independent discipline. ASU awarded their first Master degrees in Diagnostics in 2015 and has 100 students matriculating this year.

Aspinall was named Arizona Biosciences Leader of the Year by the Arizona Biotechnology Association and one of “100 Most Inspiring People in Life Sciences” by PharmaVOICE magazine and one of Women Inc’s Most Influential Corporate Board Directors. She started her business career at the strategic consulting firm Bain & Company. Aspinall holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and a BA from Tufts University.

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