Press Release Headlines

New Board Member Joins Pacific Meso Center

Dr. Rhonda Ozanian, Veteran and Prestigious Health Policy Fellow, Brings Expert Guidance in Health Policy and Military Healthcare to Fight Mesothelioma

LOS ANGELES, July 1, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — The Pacific Meso Center (PMC) has announced the appointment of Rhonda Ozanian, Ph.D. recipient of numerous awards and accolades, to its Board of Directors. Rhonda recently moved to Los Angeles from Washington D.C. where she was a 2010-2012 Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health Policy Fellow, working first in the U.S. Senate and then at the Brookings Institution. She is a veteran, having previously served as a U.S. Air Force Lieutenant Colonel in the Department of Defense and the Senior Policy Analyst to the Assistant Secretary. Deployed to Afghanistan in 2006, she served in 2007 on the President's Commission for Care of America's Returning Wounded Warriors. Dr. Ozanian has amassed over a million dollars in funding for innovative technology programs in healthcare, including veteran services.

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Up to 3,000 people are diagnosed with malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) each year in the US. With nearly one-third of all cases linked with exposure to asbestos during military service, veterans are disproportionately impacted by mesothelioma. PMC is currently collaborating with the nonprofit Cancer Research And Biostatics (CRAB) to establish the West Los Angeles Elmo Zumwalt (EZ) Mesothelioma Treatment and Research Center. Named after Elmo R. ("Bud") Zumwalt, Jr., the program will constitute a Southern California Mesothelioma Consortium that collaborates closely with UCLA's Comprehensive Mesothelioma Program and The Pacific Heart, Lung, & Blood Institute.  Elmo Zumwalt, the 19th and youngest Chief of Naval Operations, died from MPM in 2000.

Dr. Ozanian's diverse experiences, including her military background, are a vital addition to both PMC and the EZ Mesothelioma Treatment and Research Center. "Dr. Ozanian brings a rare combination of professional talents combined with a deep personal commitment to healthcare, especially for the many veterans who have unselfishly served their country but now face combat-related health crises such as mesothelioma," said Dr. Robert B. Cameron, MD, a Scientific Advisor at PMC. "With her insight, compassion, and expertise, PMC is pleased to have her on the Board as it forges ahead in finding better treatments for mesothelioma."

About The Pacific Meso Center:

The Pacific Meso Center (PMC) is a division of the Pacific Heart, Lung & Blood Institute, a 501(c)(3) non-profit medical research institute focused on the treatment and prevention of malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM). PMC is dedicated to educating the public about asbestos-related diseases, optimal treatment options, and sources of assistance and emotional support for patients and families.

For further information, please contact:
Clare Cameron