International Health Experts to Speak at Women’s Forum

The Women’s Forum at the ATS 2023 International Conference will offer twice the inspiration and career insights as it welcomes two accomplished international scientists as featured speakers.

Refiloe Masekela, MD
Refiloe Masekela, MD

Refiloe Masekela, MD, and Margareth Pretti Dalcolmo, MD, PhD, will share their experiences at the annual forum, which recognizes the achievements and supports the advancement of women in pulmonary, critical care, and sleep medicine and research.

The event is scheduled for 11:45 a.m.-1:15 p.m., Monday, May 22, in the Potomac Ballroom (Ballroom Level) at the Renaissance Washington, DC Downtown. There is a $30 registration fee.

“This year, our hope is that the women we have brought together will be able to highlight the ways in which women have led public health efforts, and as such, shaped the health of nations,” said Meshell Johnson, MD, chair of the ATS Membership Committee. The forum is organized and presented by the committee and will be hosted by Dr. Johnson and Vice Chair Alexandra Noel, PhD.

Drs. Masekela and Dalcolmo bring international perspectives to the Women’s Forum.

Margareth Pretti Dalcolmo, MD, PhD
Margareth Pretti Dalcolmo, MD, PhD

Dr. Masekela is a National Institute for Health and Care Research global health research professor, as well as an associate professor and the head of the Department of Pediatrics and Child Health at the University of KwaZulu Natal, Durban, South Africa. Her area of research interest is asthma epidemiology, including access to affordable medicines in children, as well as pulmonary function testing and improving access to pulmonary diagnostic tests in Africa.

She also is vice chair of the Pan African Thoracic Society, which is a member of the Forum of International Respiratory Societies along with the ATS. She is passionate about research capacity strengthening in Africa and is the current co-director of the ATS Methods in Epidemiology, Clinical, and Operational Research flagship program in Africa.

Dr. Dalcolmo, president of the Brazilian Thoracic Society, is a respiratory physician and senior researcher at the Oswaldo Cruz Foundation, Fiocruz, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. She has conducted and participated in clinical research protocols to treat tuberculosis and other mycobacteriosis, as well as COVID-19 and other respiratory diseases.

She is a member of the Advisory Committee on Tuberculosis of the Ministry of Health and the scientific committees of the Brazilian Societies of Thoracic Diseases and Infectious Diseases, of the TB Research Network, of the Steering Committee of the RESIST TB organization, of the Expert Group for Essential Medicines List of the WHO, and of the Regional Advisory Committee of the World Bank for health projects in Sub-Saharan Africa on Tuberculosis and occupational respiratory diseases.

A professor of postgraduate studies at Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro, a member and former coordinator of the Ethical Chamber of Respiratory Diseases and Thoracic Surgery at Cremerj, and a member of the Brazilian National Academy of Medicine, Dr. Dalcolmo also is a weekly writer for the O Globo newspaper.

Elizabeth A. Rich Award

The 2023 recipient of the Elizabeth A. Rich Award, Lorraine Ware, MD, will also give remarks during the Women’s Forum. Dr. Ware is a professor of medicine in the Division of Allergy, Pulmonary, and Critical Care Medicine within the Department of Medicine at Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

The Elizabeth A. Rich Award is presented to an outstanding woman in the ATS who has made significant contributions in the fields of pulmonary, critical care, and sleep medicine.

Dr. Ware has been a featured speaker at the Women’s Forum, and Dr. Johnson said she has been an inspiration to women, trainees, and early career faculty throughout the field.

“Her legacy in the fields of ARDS and lung injury is immeasurable and still being written with her continued work in these areas,” Dr. Johnson said. “Her leadership is stellar, especially within the ranks of the ATS, and her mentoring is phenomenal, not only in its breadth, but in its depth as well.”

Many thanks to United Therapeutics for support of the Women’s Forum.

Don’t Miss ATS 2024 Highlights: On Demand

Don’t forget that ATS 2024 Highlights: On Demand are available to all conference registrants! On Demand will give you access to the Opening Ceremony, Plenary Session, Keynote Series, Clinical Year in Review, Adult Clinical Core Curriculum, and so much more. The topics will cover ILD, asthma, health equity, and CF, to name just a few. On Demand content will be accessible to all ATS 2024 full conference and On Demand registrants until March 2025.