In 2007 the inaugural The New Orleans Conference: Practices in Cardiac Surgery and Extracorporeal Technologies was held. The conference was organized to address the need for quality continuing medical education for perfusionists, surgeons, and the entire heart care team. The goals of the conference directors were to develop a learning environment whereby timely and relevant information would be available to practitioners in all practice settings and to become the premier heart care team CME conference. Forty-three heart care professionals from around the world attended the inaugural event in post-Katrina New Orleans.
Registration essentially doubled each subsequent year and by 2009, 140 heart care team members were in attendance. Participants included physicians, surgeons, perfusionists, physician assistants, nurse anesthetists, advanced care practitioners, and nursing professionals.
Bolstered by the steady and progressive growth of the conference, planning and awards committees were formed in 2010. The initial Crystal Heart Lifetime Achievement Award was awarded to John L. Ochsner, M.D. In addition a medical history lecture series and a poster session were added. Our goal of being a leader in cardiac surgery and extracorporeal technologies education was realized.
Over the next three years conference participants from around the globe numbered over 200. Highly respected and expert faculty participation included the Ochsner Clinic Foundation and Houston Methodist Hospitals blended with successful and experienced practitioners from community settings. This expertise has continued to ensure cutting edge technology applicable to real world practice.
For 2017, our "11th year anniversary" we are again pioneering advances in the conference experience by adding some cutting edge technological topics: Beating Heart Organ Transplantation, 3D Organ Printing, Tissue Engineering, The Economics of VADs and ECMO and four concurrent simulation sessions utilizing the Sorin Perfusion, Abiomed Cardiac Assist, Thoratec VAD, and AngioDynamics AngioVac devices. In keeping with our focus these will be provided in an outstanding atmosphere conducive to learning and where networking with colleagues is easily accomplished.
The New Orleans Conference is hallmarked by a world-class hotel experience in one of the most unique, historical, and culturally rich cities on the planet. This year we are changing things up and moving the conference to Las Vegas.
We sincerely appreciate the past and ongoing support of our attendees over the years. Despite the unprecedented changes and challenges impacting the healthcare environment today, The New Orleans Conference looks forward to meeting and exceeding the educational needs of all heart care team members with innovation, creativity, and experience and remaining the premier CME venue for these remarkable and unique healthcare professionals.
Joe Basha, CCP