“One of the best conferences I have attended. Great audience engagement.”
– S. Orser, MD

“This conference far exceeded my expectations and added greatly to my knowledge and confirmed how I already practice.”
– C. Coleman, CNM

“Great conference! Great speakers and nice conference area. Well run and well done.”
– K. Fortner, MD


Our 31st Annual Fall Conference on High Risk Obstetrics is designed for physicians, certified nurse midwives, nurse practitioners, PAs, nurses, and other healthcare professionals who face challenges in the care of the high risk pregnant patient. The goal of this conference is to increase knowledge and enhance the competence of attendees. Emphasis will be placed on practical application of the evidence-based topics presented.

Topics for this year’s conference have been selected based on the educational needs determined from the identified professional practice gaps. The gaps were derived from a variety of sources including evaluations and outcomes data from past participants; clinical expert input; Symposia Medicus’ online survey; and other medical and nursing data.

Conference format will include didactic lectures, studies, and question and answer sessions.

An outstanding faculty has been assembled for this conference. Each member was selected based on their individual area of expertise and ability to communicate current, evidence-based, and practical information to participants.

You are sure to enjoy our 31st Annual Fall Conference on High Risk Obstetrics while sharing ideas and experiences with colleagues from across the country in the exciting setting of New Orleans.


As a result of participating in this conference, you should have increased knowledge and enhanced competence to…

Manage the pregnant patient with hypertension

Develop a plan to reduce postpartum complications in extremely obese women

Identify clinical strategies to reduce pregnancy-related deaths

Manage the pharmacologic treatment of intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy (ICP)

Recognize the short and long-term effects of preeclampsia

Identify the most common causes of respiratory distress in pregnancy


At the conclusion of attending this conference, participants are entitled to a certificate of credit which will be available online. Successful completion of this activity is determined by attending the live activity, review of the educational session materials, and submission of the pre/post case study survey, evaluations, and attendance verification form. Each participant should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.


This educational activity was planned and produced in accordance with the ACCME and ANCC Essentials and Standards relating to continuing medical and nursing education.

Symposia Medicus is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

Symposia Medicus is accredited as a provider of continuing nursing education by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Accreditation.


Symposia Medicus designates this live activity for a maximum of 19 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists has assigned up to 19 cognate credits to this program.

Certified Nurse Midwives
The American Midwifery Certification Board (AMCB) accepts Category 1 CME approval from organizations accredited by the ACCME.

NCCPA accepts certificates of participation for educational activities certified for AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™ from organizations accredited by ACCME or a recognized state medical society. PAs may receive a maximum of 19 hours of Category 1 credit for completing this program.

Nurse Practitioners/Nurses
The ANCC contact hours awarded for completion of this conference are 19.

Provider is also approved by the California Board of Registered Nursing, Provider #CEP2335, for 22.8 contact hours.

Pharmacology Credit for Prescriptive Authority
A maximum of 2.25 hours in pharmacology credit for prescriptive authority may be earned by attending this educational conference. Sessions awarding pharmacology credit for prescriptive authority are denoted with an Rx in the schedule.


Each registrant will have online access to session materials. The session materials will be available for download approximately two weeks prior to the conference (you’ll receive an email with instructions). If you wish to receive a hard copy of the session materials, please check the box on the registration form in this brochure.

If you are unable to attend this conference, extra copies of the session materials (either paper or digital copy) will be available one week after the conference. The cost is $60 for a hard copy and $25 for the digital copy. To place your order, please email publications@symposiamedicus.org.


To receive additional information about the conference hotel, location, tours and/or nearby attractions, and ground transportation, please visit our website at www.symposiamedicus.org.


Mark Alanis, MD, MSCR, FACOG
Department of Maternal-Fetal Medicine
St. Luke’s Health System
Boise, Idaho

Gary A. Dildy III, MD, FACOG
Vice Chairman of Quality & Patient Safety
Director, Division of Maternal-Fetal Medicine
Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology
Baylor College of Medicine
Chief Quality Officer, Obstetrics & Gynecology
Texas Children’s Hospital, Pavilion for Woman
Houston, Texas

Karrie E. Francois, MD
Clinical Assistant Professor
University of Arizona
Tucson, Arizona
Honor Health
Scottsdale Prenatal Associates, PLLC
AMOMI Pregnancy Wellness ~ Spa
Scottsdale, Arizona

Cornelia R. Graves, MD, FACOG
Conference Co-Chair

Professor, University of Tennessee
Medical Director
Tennessee Maternal Fetal Medicine
Director of Perinatal Services
St. Thomas Health Systems
Clinical Professor, Vanderbilt University
Adjunct Professor, Meharry Medical College
Nashville, Tennessee

Jeffrey C. King, MD, FACOG
Professor & Director
Division of Maternal-Fetal Medicine
Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Women’s Health
University of Louisville
Louisville, Kentucky

Patricia M. Witcher, RN, MSN
Conference Co-Chair

Clinical Outcomes Manager
Women’s Services
Northside Hospital
Atlanta, Georgia

Consistent with ACCME and ANCC guidelines, it is the policy of Symposia Medicus to ensure balance, independence, objectivity, and scientific rigor in all educational activities. Prior to the planning of this educational activity, all individuals in a position to influence and/or control the content of continuing education activities have been asked to disclose all relevant financial relationships within the past 12 months. Beyond disclosure of relevant financial relationships, faculty are required to disclose when they plan to discuss pharmaceuticals and/or medical devices that are not approved by the FDA and/or medical or surgical procedures that involve an unapproved or “off-label” use of an approved device or pharmaceutical. Symposia Medicus is committed to providing learners with commercially unbiased continuing education activities. This information is intended to assist learners in forming their own judgments about the content presented. Disclosure information will be included in the session materials for this activity, and speakers will provide a slide disclosure for each presentation, and will also verbally disclose on-site.


Thursday, October 5

7:00am Conference Registration/Check-in
During Continental Breakfast

Welcome & Introduction
Cornelia R. Graves, MD

8:15 When Her Blood Pressure Boils: Managing Hypertension in Pregnancy (Rx = 20 minutes)
Karrie E. Francois, MD
9:00 She’s Alert & Talking; However, That Means Nothing: Recognizing Early Signs of Clinical Deterioration
(Rx = 10 minutes)
Patricia M. Witcher, RN, MSN
9:45 Questions & Answers
Group Discussion

Faculty Panel & Audience
10:15 Break
10:30 Reducing Cesarean Deliveries: Interventions You Can Make
Jeffrey C. King, MD
11:15 Substance Abuse: The Changing Landscape
(Rx = 15 minutes)
Cornelia R. Graves, MD
Noon Questions & Answers
Group Discussion

Faculty Panel & Audience
12:30pm Lunch Break (on your own)
1:45 Critical Care Complications of Preeclampsia
Gary A. Dildy III, MD
2:30 Prediction & Prevention of Preterm Birth in 2017
Mark Alanis, MD, MSCR
3:15 Break
3:30 The Severely Obese Gravida: Antepartum, Intrapartum, and Postpartum Management
Mark Alanis, MD, MSCR
4:15 Questions & Answers
Group Discussion

Faculty Panel & Audience
5:00 Adjourn for the Day

Friday, October 6

7:30am Continental Breakfast
8:00 Diagnosis & Management of Placenta Accreta
Mark Alanis, MD, MSCR
8:45 Diabetes in Pregnancy: Easy as 1, 2, 3
(Rx = 25 minutes)
Karrie E. Francois, MD
9:30 Questions & Answers
Group Discussion

Faculty Panel & Audience
10:00 Break
10:15 Current Concepts of Thyroid Dysfunction in Pregnancy
Jeffrey C. King, MD
11:00 Pregnancy in Patients with Cancer
Cornelia R. Graves, MD
11:45 Questions & Answers
Group Discussion

Faculty Panel & Audience
12:15pm Lunch Break (on your own)
1:30 New Approaches to Managing Severe Postpartum Hemorrhage (Rx = 20 minutes)
Gary A. Dildy III, MD
2:15 Fetal Monitoring: What is the Baby Telling You?
(Rx = 30 minutes)
Karrie E. Francois, MD
3:00 Break
3:15 Maternal Mortality & Morbidity in the U.S. – What Next?
Patricia M. Witcher, RN, MSN
4:00 Questions & Answers
Group Discussion

Faculty Panel & Audience
4:45 Adjourn for the Day

Saturday, October 7

7:300am Continental Breakfast
8:00 Cholestasis of Pregnancy: Management & Delivery Considerations
Jeffrey C. King, MD
8:45 “I Can’t Breathe”: Acute Respiratory Emergencies During Pregnancy (Rx = 15 minutes)
Cornelia R. Graves, MD
9:30 Questions & Answers
Group Discussion

Faculty Panel & Audience
10:00 Break (Hotel check-out, if applicable)
10:30 Viruses That Bite: Zika, CMV, and Parvo
Jeffrey C. King, MD
11:15 Patient Satisfaction: Accurate Perception Minimizes the Complaint
Patricia M. Witcher, RN, MSN
Noon Pregnancy as a Window to the Future
Cornelia R. Graves, MD
12:45pm Questions & Answers
Group Discussion

Faculty Panel & Audience
1:30 Conference Adjourns

Rx = Pharmacology Credit for Prescriptive Authority
will be granted for these sessions


Nestled on the banks of the majestic Mississippi River, New Orleans is one of the United States’ most mesmerizing cities. Its Old World European charm, rich cultural fabric, and intriguing history have made it one of the world’s top travel destinations. Visit this amazing city and experience world-class cuisine, inspired jazz, and boutique shopping in a place that is steeped in history. Whether it’s music, food, or the arts you love (or all of the above), you’ll want to join in as New Orleans lets its hair down and declares, “laissez les bons temps rouler” (let the good times roll)!

The AAA Four Diamond Award-winning Harrah’s New Orleans hotel is located in the heart of this exhilarating city. This 26-story marvel, with 450 oversized rooms and suites, provides an unparalleled escape.  Spend some time at the fun, friendly casino or dine at one of their eight restaurants, including a local favorite, the Acme Oyster House. With spectacular views of the Mississippi River and New Orleans skyline, just steps from the French Quarter and a few blocks from the Superdome, there is no better place to stay in New Orleans than Harrah’s. 

Enjoy the atmosphere of Bourbon Street, walk the historic French Quarter, or shop ‘til you drop on Royal Street. Whatever your pleasure, you’ll be sure to find it in New Orleans, at our 31st Annual Fall Conference on High Risk Obstetrics.


Enrollment for this conference is limited in order to provide the best possible learning environment.
Early registration is advised.

You can register the following ways:

On-line at our website, www.symposiamedicus.org; OR

Call Monday-Friday, 8:30am-5:00pm (Pacific Time), (925) 969-1789 with Visa, MasterCard, American Express, or Discover; OR

By mail, make check payable to Symposia Medicus and send with registration form to 399 Taylor Blvd., Suite 201, Pleasant Hill, CA 94523-2287.

For additional conference or lodging information, call Symposia Medicus at (925) 969-1789, or visit our website at www.symposiamedicus.org.


If postmarked by
July 27, 2017
If postmarked after
July 27, 2017
Physicians $660 $760
Residents, Nurses, PAs, & All Others $560 $660

Discounts are available for retired healthcare providers, active U.S. military, and groups of three or more. For more information, please contact Symposia Medicus prior to registering.

Tuition includes continuing education, online access to session materials, continental breakfast on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday mornings, and break refreshments for conference registrants.

Conference registration will be confirmed via email

This conference meets the requirements for CE tax deductibility; however, we suggest you consult your financial authority for more information


Symposia Medicus has conference group rates at Harrah’s New Orleans.

We recommend you reserve your lodging as soon as possible, as rooms at the conference group rates are limited and on a first come, first served basis. Rooms may sell out and/or room rates may increase prior to the release date of Sunday, September 17, 2017.

Harrah’s New Orleans
228 Poydras Street
New Orleans, Louisiana 70130
Direct: (504) 533-6000

These group rates will be available three (3) days before and three (3) days after the conference (based on availability) if you wish to extend your stay in New Orleans. If you wish to extend your stay three or more days prior to the conference, the hotel will provide a 10% discount on their rates at the time of booking.

To make your reservation, please call (877) 466-7847.
To make your reservation online, please visit the following link


Room Type Group Rates
(Single/Double Occupancy)
Classic Room $209/night 430 sq. ft. room features king or two beds, elegant appointments, and original artwork. It also includes an exclusive-to-Harrah’s pillow-top Simmons Beautyrest mattress, entertainment center, double vanity, separate bathtub and shower, and casual seating area.
Premium Room $235/night 430 sq. ft. room features king or two beds, the same appointments as the Luxury room, plus a spa-style waffle weave robe. All Premium rooms are newly renovated.


Hotel Policies

A deposit equal to one night’s room & tax is due to the hotel with major credit card upon making your reservation. Each guestroom must have at least one registered guest 21 years of age or older.

Above conference group rates are per room, per night and do not include the following (subject to change):
- 14% room tax
- $2.00 occupancy tax
- $14.99 plus 14% tax, resort fee (fee includes: unlimited local phone calls, admission to the fitness center for two guests, and basic in-room internet access for up to two devices per day)

Maximum guestroom occupancy is four, regardless of age

Additional adults 18 years & older are $30 per person, per night (not to exceed maximum occupancy)

Children 17 years & under are complimentary (not to exceed maximum occupancy)

Bed Type Requests: You can select one or two beds; however, requests cannot be guaranteed until check-in

Rollaway beds are available at an additional cost of $30 per night (subject to availability & change). Rollaway beds are only available in king-bedded rooms due to fire codes.

Cribs are available on a complimentary basis (subject to availability & change)

Check-in time is 4:00pm and check-out time is 11:00am. Any departures after 11:00am are subject to a full day charge.

A 30-minute break has been allotted in our conference schedule on the last day for those of you who may need to check-out

Credit/Debit Card Policy: Upon check-in, the hotel requires a credit card or debit card to ensure that funds are available. Holds are placed on your account for your entire stay; however, the amount may be immediately deducted from your account. The length of time for which these holds remain on your credit or debit account varies from bank to bank.

Parking: Valet parking is $42/night and self-parking is $34/night. Self-parking charge can be waived daily if you have a Total Rewards Card (obtained on property) and play at least 30 minutes of slot play per day. See hotel’s front desk for more information.

Hotel cancellations must be made directly with the hotel at least 72 hours prior to scheduled arrival (check-in) date, or you will be charged a cancellation fee equal to your one night’s deposit and tax

Cancellation Policies

Conference cancellations must be made in writing (via email or mail) to Symposia Medicus and a refund, less a 10% processing fee, will be given. No refunds will be made if cancellation is received after August 31, 2017; however, tuition, less 10% processing fee, may be applied to a future Symposia Medicus conference.

All cancellations must be emailed to registrar@symposiamedicus.org OR mailed to Symposia Medicus. If mailed, it must be postmarked by the date stated above.

In the unlikely event of conference cancellation by Symposia Medicus, full tuition refunds will be made.
Symposia Medicus will not be responsible for refunding travel or any other expenses.      


You will fly into Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport (MSY), which is approximately 30 minutes from Harrah’s New Orleans. For information on ground transportation, please visit our website.

Symposia Medicus has arranged for discount fares with Alaska, Delta, and United airlines for this conference. Reservations can be made either through your travel agency or through the airlines at the website or Convention Desk numbers listed below.

In order to receive the discounted rate, you or your travel agent must refer to the Symposia Medicus Group ID number listed here.

Alaska Airlines For discounts on Alaska Airlines flights, please book online at www.alaskaair.com and click on the link “Use Discount Code,” located at the bottom of the “Book Flights” box. Once you click on this link, another page will appear. On this page, you will need to insert ECMX498 in the “Discount Code” box, located at the right hand side of the page.
Delta Airlines For discounts on Delta Airlines, please visit www.delta.com and click on the link “Advanced Search,” located at the bottom of the “Book a Trip” box. Once you click on this link, another page will appear. On this page, you will need to insert NMNP8 in the “Meeting Event Code” box, located at the right hand side of the page. For questions, please call the Delta Airlines Convention Desk at (800) 328-1111.
United Airlines For discounts on United Airlines, please visit www.united.com and click on All Search Options, located on the bottom left corner of the “Book Travel” box. Once you click on this link, another page will appear. At the bottom of this page, you will insert ZX32764574 in the “Promotions and Certificates” box. For questions, please call the United Airlines Convention Desk at (800) 426-1122.


For conference discounts, Symposia Medicus has made arrangements with AVIS and Budget Car Rentals. Reservations can be made by phone; please refer to the conference code and the conference/airport location when making your reservations. Please see below:

AVIS 800-331-1600 AWD # B766625
Budget 800-772-3773 BCD # U076767