Houston Matters

What Can Medical And Oil Industries Learn From Each Other?

We all know two of Houston’s biggest industries are oil and gas and medicine, and that those industries employ some of Greater Houston’s brightest minds. So what could all those bright minds accomplish if they joined forces?

Pumps and Pipes logo
Pumps and Pipes logo

The oil and gas industry and the medical profession are coming together for the eighth annual Pumps & Pipes conference at the Houston Methodist Research Center on Monday. 

“Houston is our secret weapon,” says Bill Kline, manager of drilling and subsurface research for ExxonMobil. “As somebody that works in technology and business in Houston — we’re all in different businesses, but we all have similar fundamental interests — fluids, robotics, imaging. And to be able to talk over the fence to a colleague with a world class organization, like the Houston Medical Center or NASA is invaluable to us all.”

The idea is to compare different technologies that may be of benefit to another industry.

“We use imaging. We navigate hollow tubes to a target,” says Dr. Alan Lumsden, chief of cardiovascular surgery at the Houston Methodist DeBakey Heart & Vascular Center. “In Bill’s world, that’s called a drill. In my world, it’s called a catheter. What we really want to do is talk to people who are addressing like problems, but have no pre-conceived notions about how to address those problems.”

Lumsden and Kline were guests on Houston Matters. Listen to the full conversation below: