International Conference Committee Chair Previews Highlights of ATS 2022 Program

Each year, thousands of respiratory medicine professionals gather to present and learn about groundbreaking advancements in the field at the ATS International Conference. Returning to an in-person format in San Francisco after two years on a virtual platform, ATS 2022 will take place May 13-18 at the Moscone Center with a robust scientific program.

Karen J. Collishaw, MPP, CAE
Karen J. Collishaw, MPP, CAE

Registration is open online with early bird pricing available through March 10.

“It is going to have the world’s foremost science in respiratory medicine, whether that is a broad-based talk about asthma or COPD, or a niche topic. We have a wide gamut of scientific content available,” said ATS Chief Executive Officer Karen J. Collishaw, MPP, CAE. “People who want to keep up to date on the very latest in respiratory medicine, this is the place to be. The best science is presented.”

Attendees will notice a change to scheduling at ATS 2022. Sessions that have traditionally been 120 minutes will be 90 minutes this year to allow for networking and to accommodate cleaning requirements linked to COVID-19.

“I look forward to the sessions and the time in between the sessions being really conducive to facilitating networking, seeing colleagues, and having that interaction that is so difficult to measure but is hugely impactful with respect to research and bringing new thoughts and innovation into clinical practice and research in pulmonary medicine,” said International Conference Committee Chair Andrew J. Halayko, PhD, ATSF.

Andrew J. Halayko, PhD, ATSF
Andrew J. Halayko, PhD, ATSF

The scientific program will be as engaging as ever, including an expanded lineup of late-breaking abstracts.

“We have maintained the integrity of what people have come to know and love about this conference,” Dr. Halayko said.

The daily Clinical Year in Review is a notable favorite among attendees.

“The room gets packed because everybody wants to know what happened this year. Every disease you could imagine is covered at some point,” Dr. Halayko said.

The Clinical Trials Symposium will return for a third year, but this will be the first year it will be held in person.

“This is a very exciting session,” Dr. Halayko said. “These are clinical trials — phase 3 and large phase 2 — of breakthroughs in clinical care in pulmonary, critical care, and sleep medicine. It’s become exceedingly prestigious. It’s become a highlight of the conference.”

COVID-19 will be a recurring theme, going beyond the pathophysiology of the disease to examine the impact of the pandemic on the health system and trial data on emerging therapies.

“We have a strong complement of COVID-19 sessions ranging from health disparities and vaccine equity right through the latest advances in critical care medicine in severe disease,” Dr. Halayko said.

One of the featured talks in the Keynote Series will share real-life stories of how COVID-19 has affected health care professionals and patients through an interactive presentation.

“I think it’s the perfect way to do this because COVID-19 has affected us in such a big way with respect to burnout — and I’m not just talking about physicians,” Dr. Halayko said. “I’m talking about nurses, other health professionals, respiratory therapists. People are leaving the profession because they can’t take it.”

Multiple presenters will discuss the effects of the environment, specifically air quality linked to climate change, on lung health.

“The effects of climate change are broader than we initially think about,” Dr. Halayko said. “It’s not just getting warmer. Diesel pollutants and fossil fuel-burning pollution changes the chemical nature in the atmosphere for the worse. It’s not necessarily that it creates more pollution, but it makes more dangerous pollution.”

Another Keynote Series speaker, Michael C. Fiore, MD, MPH, MBA, director of the Center for Tobacco and Intervention at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, will discuss tobacco use and lung health, including the latest federal tobacco guidelines, and other sessions will address vaping and lung health.

A new approach to programming for basic scientists includes the Science and Innovation Breakthroughs of the Year session, which is linked to midday events hosted by the Science and Innovation Center in the Exhibit Hall around the theme of senescence and aging in lung disease.

“They support a lot of networking, feature new speakers, and they give an opportunity for people to meet some of the eminent scientists that we are bringing in,” Dr. Halayko said. “That complements the basic science core curriculum that we have been featuring for a decade now.”

The Program at a Glance offers a preliminary schedule of educational opportunities and other activities, including the Opening Ceremony, Annual ATS Research Program Benefit, Abstract Sessions, Medical Education Seminars, and dedicated forums to facilitate discussion on diversity and women’s issues. Some activities require pre-registration and an additional fee.

Interactive sessions have been integrated throughout the program, Dr. Halayko said, and many scientific sessions include patient perspectives through the patient advocacy organizations that make up the ATS Public Advisory Roundtable.

Register for ATS 2022

Register today for the ATS 2022 International Conference! Don’t miss this opportunity to take part in the in-person conference, May 13-18 in San Francisco. Join your colleagues to learn about the latest developments in pulmonary, critical care, and sleep medicine.

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