In early November 2018, the OAC put on its cowboy boots and traveled to Nashville for the annual ObesityWeek — the world’s largest international conference bringing together world-renowned experts in obesity.

Each year, this groundbreaking conference focuses on the science of obesity, clinical application, surgical interventions, prevention strategies and more — all while sharing new innovations and breakthroughs.  The OAC is excited to have attended ObesityWeek for our 14th consecutive year and represent patient voices in the future of obesity care!

An Honorary Reception

During our stay at ObesityWeek, the OAC also hosted a special reception to honor a few outstanding advocates who have helped our organization continue to grow, expand its reach and make a difference in people’s lives who are affected by obesity.

Ethan Lazarus, MD, OAC 2018 Healthcare Provider Advocate of the Year

We began by proudly awarding our Healthcare Provider Advocate of the Year Award to Ethan Lazarus, MD, who has been monumental in paving the way for obesity treatment and prevention. Dr. Lazarus has also worked closely with the American Medical Association (OMA) to support the Treat and Reduce Obesity Act and declare obesity a disease in 2013.

A strong proponent for People-First language and the elimination of weight bias in the medical community, Dr. Lazarus is an incredible advocate who exemplifies the importance and inclusion of patient voices.

We are also proud to have awarded the Dr. Blackstone Outstanding Membership Recruitment by a Physician Award to two participants in our Sponsored Membership Program: the New Life Center for Bariatric Surgery – Stephen G. Boyce, MD, FACS, FASMBS; and Rocky Mountain Associated Physicians – Doctors Steven C. Simper, Rodrick McKinlay, and Nicholas J. Paulk. Their combined efforts have joined more than 7,800 new members to the OAC Community to date!

On a final note, the OAC honored one of its most dedicated patient advocates, Dr. James Clay Wellborn, who passed away in early 2018.

Dr. Wellborn was a true leader in medical technology and was also the first surgeon in the state of Arkansas to perform laparoscopic gallbladder surgery. A strong advocate for unifying and elevating patient voices, his legacy lives on as the OAC continues to put patients first.

Patient Voices are the Future

Each ObesityWeek is packed with science, research, medical breakthroughs and much more. We love discovering what’s new in the obesity medicine community, but we’re also proud to bring patient voices to the table as the strongest patient advocacy organization in the U.S.

The OAC recognizes that obesity prevention and treatment must always include patients at every stage. Their experiences and perspectives matter, as it is their lives we are ultimately working for. We are thankful to have attended ObesityWeek 2018 and learned so much!

For more info on ObesityWeek and to view 2018 highlights, visit: