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Duke Heart Week Ending February 16th 2020

Highlights of the week:

Heart PFAC Recruiting, Promoting Heart Month

Volunteers from the Duke Heart Patient & Family Advisory Council joined us outside of Duke University Hospital’s Atrium Café this week. They hosted an information booth to promote the work of our PFAC and encourage patients and family members to consider joining. They also worked to provide information around heart disease and the importance of regular blood pressure screenings. Many thanks to Kathryn Daily, Tommy Humphries and Jim Taylor, our PFAC volunteers, and to Tracey Koepke, director of communications, for coordinating the space and materials.

Cardiovascular Academic Accelerator Fellows Course

We had the 5th year of our Fanatastic faculty – Andrew Wang, Tracy Wang, Sunil Rao, Adam DeVore, Mike Felker, Sreek Vemulapalli, Penny Hodgson, and others helping our next generation learn how to present, write, and evaluate academic studies.  Great to see the interaction and enthusiasm.

Ward Presentation at Grand Rounds

Cary Ward led an interactive Cardiology Grand Rounds on the important topic of clinician burnout. She did an excellent job summarizing the issue and leading a discussion on possible solutions. One easy takeaway, stop work and have lunch with a Heart Center colleague!


Every Heartbeat Matters Award

Carmelo Milano and the Duke Heart for Honduras team has been awarded the Thoracic Surgery Foundation Every Heartbeat Matters Award for their outreach work in Honduras. The team will receive $30,000 in grant funding which is made possible through the support of the Edwards Lifesciences Foundation.

The Duke Heart for Honduras team made a trip in July 2019 to the capital city of Tegucigalpa, Honduras, to perform heart surgeries at Instituto National Cardiopulmonar. Another trip is being planned for later this year. The TSF grant award will provide critical funding toward offsetting costs of the next trip.

In the award notification, the TSF noted that, “Members of the Charitable Outreach Initiatives Committee and the TSF Board are very excited about your surgical outreach project, and we know that your contributions to our specialty, and to underserved populations, will be significant.”

Congratulations to the full team! Great job and we look forward to watching the program continue to grow.


Al-Khatib Elected to AUC

Congratulations to Sana Al-Khatib on her election into the Association of University Cardiologists, a professional organization limited to an active membership of 135 academic cardiologists from across the U.S.

Members, who are elected by their peers, are leaders and top investigators in academic cardiology. We are pleased to see Sana’s thought leadership and commitment to academic medicine recognized by this highly selective association.

What a tremendous honor, Sana. Well deserved!

Perfusion News:

We are happy to share some great news from our perfusion team:

  • Travis Siffring is now a Fellow of Pediatric Perfusion. He joins Greg Smigla, Dave Kaemmer, Rich Walczak and Desiree Bonadonna in use of the “FPP” credential.
  • Scott Snider has been re-elected as Treasurer of the American Society of Extracorporeal Technology (AmSECT).
  • Desiree Bonadonna has been nominated and approved as a Fellow of the American Academy of Cardiovascular Perfusion, joining Ian Shearer, Greg Smigla, and Rich Walczak as AACP fellows.


Shown here are Siffring, Snider and Bonadonna (L-R). Congratulations and way to represent Duke Heart!

Cardiovascular Professionals Week

Feb. 9 -15 was Cardiovascular Professionals Week, a national week of recognition for professionals working in cardiovascular care across all specialties. Shown here are photos of some of our cardiovascular teams. Shown from L-R, top to bottom: the Cardiac Diagnostic Unit (CDU), 7200; CDU, Southpoint; CDU, 2K; and Cardiac MRI.


We are grateful for each of our team members and the care they provide to our patients. Thanks so much for sharing these photos with us!

 Duke Basketball back in gear with great game and past athletes coming.

Upcoming Opportunities/Save the Date:

Cardiology Grand Rounds

This week, Chris Longenecker of Case Western Reserve University is our guest speaker. His topic is “Innovations in CVD Prevention for People Living with HIV” Please join us on Tuesday, Feb. 18 at 7:15 a.m., DN 2003.

Upcoming Grand Rounds:

  • March 24: Carolyn Lam, Duke-NUS
  • April 14: Ryan Tedford, MUSC
  • May 12: Michelle Kittleson, Cedars Sinai


Upcoming Duke Heart sponsored CME Events:

February 22: Third Annual Cardio-Oncology Symposium: Improving Cancer Outcomes and Optimizing Cardiovascular Health. Washington Duke Inn & Conference Center, Durham, NC.

April 18:  Seventh Annual Duke Sports Cardiology Symposium. Trent Semans Center, Duke University School of Medicine, Durham, NC. (Registration coming soon.)

May 2: Twentieth Anniversary Andrew G. Wallace Symposium in Preventive Cardiology: My How Times Have Changed. Washington Duke Inn & Conference Center, Durham, NC.

June 4-5: Duke-Stanford Cardiovascular Research Symposium. Trent Semans Center, Duke University School of Medicine, Durham, NC.

July 8: Heart Safe Choices. Trent Semans Center, Duke University School of Medicine, Durham, NC.


Have news to share?

If you have news to share with the Pulse readership, please contact Tracey Koepke, director of communications for Duke Heart at tracey.koepke@duke.edu. We would love to hear about your latest accomplishments, professional news, cool happenings, and any events or opportunities that may be of interest to our Duke Heart family. Please call with any questions: 919-681-2868. Feedback on Pulse is welcome and encouraged.


Duke Heart in the News:


February 7 — Monique Starks


In-hospital cardiac arrest care, outcomes similar in patients on dialysis, general population



February 10 — Duke is mentioned

USA Today

Here’s how to solve the looming shortage of doctors: Nurse practitioners.



February 13 — Duke is mentioned

Carolina Journal

Effort toward reforming CON laws to promote competition meets resistance

Effort toward reforming CON laws to promote competition meets resistance

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