We hope everyone is having a great summer and managing to find time to spend with friends and family.
We were pleased to have so many members of the COPD Foundations scientific leadership present in June at the COPD8 Conference in Birmingham, UK. They participated in presentations on state of the art clinical care and advances in scientific research, highlighting the COPD Gene Study, Bronchiectasis Research Consortium and the progress of the Biomarkers Qualification Consortium. We were especially pleased to see an increased focus on including the patient voice in decision-making, and I was privileged to present updates on patient engagement efforts and the COPD Foundations activities here in the U.S. Building on the success of COPD7USA and the COPD8 Conference, we are excited to host the COPD8USA Conference June 14 and 15, 2013 in Chicago, IL.
Were also proud to announce that in July, Daytona International Speedway (DIS) officially became smoke-free, prohibiting smokers from lighting up in the grandstands, and only allowing smokers in designated areas. This is a monumental change for a sport that used to be sponsored by tobacco companies and distribute cigarettes at events. This is a step in the right direction and a courageous move. On behalf of our DRIVE4COPD campaign, we presented a recognition plaque to Joie Chitwood, President of DIS.
In this issue of the Digest, we feature an important topichow to make the most out of your doctors appointment. All too often, individuals dont use their time in the most effective way, and leave their doctors office with unanswered questions. Our board chair, Dr. Byron Thomashow, and Dr. Barbara Yawn discuss how you can utilize both your time and your doctors time in an efficient manner.
This year, our COPD Biomarkers Qualification Consortium submitted an Initial Briefing Package to the Food and Drug Administration, formally starting the qualification process for our first biomarker, Plasma Fibrinogen. This is extremely important to individuals with COPD, because qualification of biomarkers will assist in accelerating therapeutic development to get new medicines to those who need them most.
In August, well be hosting District Visits on Capitol Hill again, and the article in this issue will discuss the importance of your participation, and how you can get involved. For more information, please visit: www.operation435.org.
We also discuss the COPD Case Finding Consortium; were honored to be a partner along with the National Institutes of Health and other organizations dedicated to advancing the COPD agenda in the U.S. with the goal of identifying undiagnosed patients and developing better therapies.
We would like to congratulate Susie Rosso Wolf for stepping forward in this issue and discussing her struggle with COPD and obesityand for maintaining her positive attitude through it all. This article reminds us that each and every one of us living with COPD has a different but important story to tell.
As always, we want to thank you, the COPD community, for all that you do, and want to remind you about our educational and informational resources on our website: www.copdfoundation.org. To get involved or for more information, you can always call our C.O.P.D. Information Line, 9AM to 9PM EST Monday through Friday at (866) 316-2673.
All the best,
John W. Walsh
Editors Note: John W. Walsh was inducted into the COPD Hall of Fame during the COPD8 Conference this past June. For more information about this, please visit www.copdfoundation.org