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    Mayo Clinic, Global Bridges to Host Global Tobacco Dependence Treatment Summit

a person puffing and smoking an e-cigarette

ROCHESTER, Minn. — The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that the majority of the world’s 1 billion smokers want to quit. Though tobacco dependence treatment has the greatest short-term impact on tobacco-related mortality of any intervention, it remains the least-funded and least-implemented tobacco control measure globally.

Health care professionals are crucial to changing this, say the organizers of the Global Tobacco Dependence Treatment Summit 2016, which will take place May 23-24 on Mayo Clinic’s campus in Rochester, Minnesota. Mayo Clinic’s Nicotine Dependence Center and the Global Bridges Healthcare Alliance are bringing together world public health leaders, researchers, advocates and health care providers to advance culturally relevant treatment of tobacco dependence around the globe and discuss the impact of health care professional advocacy on tobacco control.

Unless action is taken, tobacco use will kill 1 billion people this century, according to WHO. Six years since the adoption of WHO guidelines calling for integration of cessation treatment into tobacco control, only 12 percent of countries have developed comprehensive treatment services. Even so, there are steps health care professionals can take to improve patients’ chances of quitting, including refraining from tobacco use, identifying tobacco users at intake, and offering brief advice.Logo with the words Global Bridges Healthcare Alliance for Tobacco Dependence Treatement

“Helping people quit tobacco saves lives. As health care professionals, we have a moral responsibility to patients around the world to make tobacco dependence treatment available, accessible and culturally sensitive,” said J. Taylor Hays, M.D., director of the Mayo Clinic Nicotine Dependence Center and chair of Global Bridges. “People who want to quit need to know providers are there for them at every step of the journey toward living free from tobacco.”

Sarah Dick, JPA Health Communications, 202-591-4050, sarah@jpa.com

Kelley Luckstein, Mayo Clinic Public Affairs, 507-284-5005, newsbureau@mayo.edu

Speakers and events at the Global Summit 2016 will include:

  • Emerging Evidence on Harm Reduction and E-cigarettes
    Cliff Douglas, J.D., director of the American Cancer Society Center for Tobacco Control, will chair this evening plenary discussion with:

    • Mitch Zeller, J.D., director of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration Center for Tobacco Products
    • Dorothy K. Hatsukami, Ph.D., professor in the Department of Psychiatry, University of Minnesota
    • Scott Leischow, Ph.D., professor of Health Services Research, Mayo Clinic
    • Constantine Vardavas, M.D., School of Medicine, University of Crete
    • Feras Hawari, M.D., FCCP, chief of Pulmonary and Critical Care, King Hussein Cancer Center
  • National Treatment Guidelines Development and Implementation
    This session, presented by Martin Raw, Ph.D., director of the International Centre for Tobacco Cessation, will address the implementation of the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control guidelines on tobacco dependence treatment. Dr. Raw will be joined by:

    • Dongbo Fu, M.D., technical officer for Tobacco Cessation, WHO Tobacco-Free Initiative
    • Michael Fiore, M.D., director of the Center for Tobacco Research and Intervention, University of Wisconsin
  • Effecting Policy Change Through Physician and Health Care Professional Advocacy
    This panel discussion will be chaired by Richard D. Hurt, M.D., emeritus Mayo Clinic physician and former medical director of the Mayo Clinic Nicotine Dependence Center, Dr. Hurt will discuss the role of health care professionals in tobacco control advocacy and review successful national advocacy examples with:

    • Eduardo Bianco, M.D., cardiologist, tobacco dependence treatment specialist and president of the Tobacco Epidemic Research Center of Uruguay
    • Carlos A. Jimenez-Ruiz, M.D., Ph.D., chair of the Tobacco Control Committee of the European Respiratory Society
    • Yolonda C. Richardson, J.D., M.P.H., executive vice president, Global Campaigns, Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids 
  • “Tobacco Dependence Treatment Patient Panel”
    Barbara Dallavalle, M.A., C.T.T.S., will facilitate a panel discussion with three patients who have been treated for tobacco dependence at the Mayo Clinic Nicotine Dependence Center.  The patients will share their struggle with tobacco addiction, the experiences with treatment that supported their success, and the benefits they now enjoy as a result of living tobacco-free.

For a complete list of speakers, presentations and experiences, go to https://tobaccotreatmentsummit.mayo.edu/speakers/

About Global Bridges
Global Bridges connects and mobilizes an international network of health care professionals and organizations dedicated to advancing effective tobacco dependence treatment and advocating for proven tobacco control policies. Since its inception in 2010, Global Bridges grantees and partners have created culturally relevant training curricula based on established best practices and trained more than 3,600 health care professionals from 63 countries. In partnership with funders, such as Pfizer Independent Grants for Learning and Change, Global Bridges offers competitive grant funding and guidance for evidence-based training. The Mayo Clinic Nicotine Dependence Center and the American Cancer Society, founding partners of Global Bridges, provide programmatic support.

Note: WHO’s official smoking statistics and report on the WHO Tobacco Free Initiative “MPOWER” measures for country-level implementation of WHO FCTC guidelines can be accessed on the organization's website.


About Mayo Clinic
Mayo Clinic is a nonprofit organization committed to clinical practice, education and research, providing expert, whole-person care to everyone who needs healing. For more information, visit http://www.mayoclinic.org/about-mayo-clinic or https://newsnetwork.mayoclinic.org/.