U.S. Health Care Professionals To Attend First Ochsner Conference On Tobacco

NEW ORLEANS – Health care professionals from across the U.S. will travel to New Orleans on Friday, Nov. 14, to attend the first Alton Ochsner Conference on Tobacco hosted by Ochsner Health System and the Louisiana Campaign for Tobacco-Free Living. The conference will commemorate the 75th Anniversary of the late Dr. Alton Ochsner and his groundbreaking article, co-written with Dr. Michael DeBakey, distinguishing one of the first links to lung cancer associated with tobacco use.

         Notable conference attendees and speakers include: Executive Director of the Ochsner Institute for Wellness and Health Policy, Dr. Patrick Quinlan; 2014 winners of the Alton Ochsner Award Relating Smoking and Disease, Dr. Charles Hennekens and Dr. Laura Bierut; FDA Center for Tobacco Products Director of the Office of Science, Dr. David Ashley; Former Phillip Morris Tobacco Research Center scientist Dr. Victor DeNoble; the 18th U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Regina Benjamin and Louisiana State Senator David Heitmeier.

         “Ochsner Health System is pleased to welcome all of these health care leaders to New Orleans for the first Alton Ochsner Conference on Tobacco,” said Dr. Quinlan. “We will engage in substantive conversation about current tobacco use and share groundbreaking research and innovative ideas about how to reduce tobacco use in this country.”

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         The conference will take place from 8:30 a.m. – 4:45 p.m. at the Sheraton Hotel, located at 500 Canal St. in New Orleans. Dr. John Ochsner, son of Dr. Alton Ochsner, will open the conference by discussing his father’s breakthrough research on tobacco and his lifelong campaign to educate the community about the dangers of tobacco.

         The conference will provide an overview of current and proposed federal regulations on tobacco, emerging and established research on tobacco use and cessation, and state and local efforts to reduce tobacco use. The conference will also highlight current research on the genetics of smoking and nicotine dependence.

         The conference will feature representatives from the Louisiana Campaign for Tobacco-Free Living, Ochsner Health System, The University of Mississippi Medical Center, Washington University School of Medicine, Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine at Florida Atlantic University, Louisiana Senate Health and Welfare Committee and a host of dignitaries and public health leaders.

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         Dr. Quinlan will conclude the conference with a panel discussion that will focus on the current tobacco challenges and the next steps to winning the war against tobacco on the federal, state and local levels.

         The Alton Ochsner Conference on Tobacco is one of many events taking place during Smoke-Free Week 2.0 in New Orleans from Nov. 12 –19. Smoke-Free Week is a health initiative designed to raise awareness on the risks of secondhand smoke exposure in the workplace and is sponsored by the Office of Councilmember LaToya Cantrell, the Healthier Air for All Campaign (HAFA), an initiative of the Louisiana Campaign for Tobacco-Free Living (TFL) and the Coalition for a Tobacco-Free Louisiana (CTFLA).

         On Wednesday, Nov. 12, at 11:00 a.m., New Orleans City Councilmember Cantrell, New Orleans City Health Director Charlotte Parent, Ochsner Clinic Foundation and International Services CEO Dr. Quinlan, the Louisiana Campaign for Tobacco-Free Living Associate Director Tonia Moore, Americans for Nonsmokers’ Rights (ANR) Foundation Executive Director Cynthia Hallett, health care professionals and community leaders will hold a special press event on the front steps of City Hall, located at 1300 Perdido St. in New Orleans.

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         For a complete list of events, including the Smoke-Free Second Line Parade featuring the Hot 8 Brass Band, go to www.healthierairforall.org.  

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