NABS NEWS (Winter/Spring 2019)

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Don’t forget to mark your calendars for the 2020 NABS Conference in Sun Valley, Idaho. It will be held February 15-20 (Presidents Day Weekend!) We hope to see you there!

Burn Icon and Former NABS President Passes Away


NABS is deeply saddened to announce that world-renowned Burn/Trauma Surgeon and Researcher Basil A. Pruitt, Jr., MD passed away on March 17, 2019. He was 88. Dr. Pruitt dedicated 31 years of his life to the U.S. Army Institute for Surgical Research (USAISR) in San Antonio, where he rose to the rank of Colonel. During that time, he also received the Presidential Distinguished Medal for Outstanding Service During Wartime for his work in Vietnam where he performed surgery at the 12th Evacuation Hospital, the busiest medical facility in the war.

Over the last half-century, innovations led by Dr. Pruitt and his team at the USAISR, resulted in a dramatic improvement in the survival of patients with severe burns. In 1959, a patient with burns over 43 percent of the body had a 50 percent chance of surviving. Today, the same patient’s survival chances have improved to more than 75 percent.

Another measure of his stature as an innovator, is the recognition by his peers. During his career, he was elected as the president of 12 surgical societies including the North American Burn Society in 1994.

Upon retirement from the U.S. Army, Dr. Pruitt continued his career by becoming Professor of Surgery at UT Health San Antonio. “Dr. Pruitt had a major and sustained international impact on the fields of surgery, burn care, trauma and critical care,” said Ronald M. Stewart, M.D., professor and chair of surgery at UT Health San Antonio. “His contributions in these fields were transformational and directly led to dramatic improvements in patient care marked by improved survival, decreased complications and improved health. For all the patients who will be treated at a burn center or trauma center today, this week and into the future: each and every one of these patient’s care has been impacted and improved through the lifetime work of Dr. Basil A. Pruitt, Jr.,” Dr. Stewart said.

To learn more about the life of this icon and one of the founding fathers of modern trauma and burn medicine, click on the link below to watch a video by the American College of Surgeons.

Icons in Surgery: Basil A. Pruitt Jr., MD, FACS, FCCM, MCCM

2019 NABS Annual Conference Another BIG Success!
The North American Burn Society’s 37th Annual Conference was held January 19-24 in Park City, UT. Over 65 attendees and 15 vendors enjoyed a variety of highly informative burn-related presentations, along with fantastic skiing conditions that included many memorable runs. Non-skiing participants enjoyed other outings such as bobsledding, snowmobiling, and even an old-fashioned Toga party! Click on the links below to see all the fun!

2019 NABS Slideshow                      The Great NABS Bobsled Race

Watch the 2019 NABS Keynote Address
Burn Survivor John O’Leary delivered the Keynote address for the 2019 NABS Conference. Mixing humor, positive energy, and plenty of inspiration, John gives you a new appreciation on life and challenges you to ask yourself, “What more can I do?”

Click here to watch this very inspiring video

NABS Sadly Loses One It’s Charter Members 


Barbara K. Klein, 60, of St. Paul, MN, passed away on June 19th. Besides being a charter member of NABS, Barbara was also the first non-physician to become president of the organization in 1998.

Entering into the burn industry as a fresh-faced youngster in the early 1980’s, “Barb” started out as a Sales Representative with the former Bioplasty company. In 1992, she became part-owner and president of Brennen Medical, the leading company for porcine xenograft tissue and manufacturers of the Brennen Mesher. However it was her interest in Beta-glucan that led to the creation of a new type of product aimed at faster healing and less pain in partial-thickness burns and donor sites. Upon which, she successfully launched a line of products that are still used today.

In 2012, Brennen was sold to Mölnlyke Healthcare – giving Barb an opportunity to take a breather. After a few years of “enjoying life,” she went back into the corporate sector and formed Brevena Laboratories in 2014. By the next year, she launched a line of luxury skincare products that utilized her three decades of experience in the management of burns and wounds. She served as the company CEO until her untimely passing.

Barbara’s real passion was her family. Endless trips together, time at the lake in the summer and on the ski slopes in the winter, she wanted the family to experience life. She is survived by her loving husband of 28 years, Dean Klein; her two sons, Derek (24) and Jared (20). Barbara will be dearly missed for her ever-present selflessness, generosity, optimism and for her contagious smile. Click on the link below to view a video tribute to our one and only, “Barbie.”

Video Tribute to Barbara Klein – 1998 NABS President

If you have any news or special event that you would like to share with NABS NEWS, please send us an email at: NABS NEWS EMAIL HOTLINE

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