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Duke Heart week ending March 21st 2021

Rogers to Lead Texas Heart Institute; Will Leave Duke in May

Joseph G. Rogers, MD, Chief Medical Officer of Duke University Health System and professor of medicine in the Division of Cardiology will leave Duke to become President and Chief Executive Officer of Texas Heart Institute in Houston, effective May 17, 2021.

Eric D. Wade, Chairman of the Board of Trustees at Texas Heart Institute (THI), announced the news on Tuesday afternoon in a news release. “Dr. Rogers possesses the skillful leadership and expertise that the THI needs during a pivotal moment in its history,” he said. “Rogers brings experience to lead THI’s mission to reduce the devastating toll of cardiovascular disease through innovative programs in research, education, and improved patient care.”

“This is a really wonderful opportunity at Texas Heart,” Rogers said. “It’s a chance to build on the foundation they’ve put together over many years. They’ve got a real vision to grow and to increase their impact not just in Houston but across the country. I’m honored and humbled to have been selected to lead that group.”

Rogers, who joined the Duke faculty in 2004, has been instrumental across the Heart Failure (HF) section and the University more broadly during his time here, according to Manesh Patel, MD, chief of the Division of Cardiology at Duke.

“Joe Rogers is a fierce advocate for patients and learners, and has routinely put the interest of others ahead of his own,” Patel added. “His passion for clinical excellence and innovation will continue on.”

In a statement to the cardiology faculty, Patel noted the many leadership roles Rogers has held at Duke, including as section chief of Heart Failure; Vice Chief for Clinical Affairs in Cardiology; Senior Vice Chair of Medicine; Associate CMO for Strategic Growth and Implementation and a member of the board of managers for the PDC; interim roles as the Chief of Cardiology and Chair of the Department of Medicine, and most recently, Chief Medical Officer for Duke University Health System.

“The chance to serve the Health System as CMO has been an enriching two-and-a-half years,” Rogers said. “I’ve learned an incredible amount about healthcare, about healthcare delivery, and management of a health care system. I am grateful to Bill Fulkerson and the other senior leaders of the health system for allowing me the chance to learn from them. I’m grateful to Duke for allowing me to experience those opportunities.”

Of his time at Duke, Rogers went on to say, “First, I thank Duke Heart. It has been home for me since my arrival. It’s really the people who attracted me here in 2004 and in 2021 it’s the people I will miss.”

In the official Duke Health announcement to leadership, William Fulkerson, MD, Executive Vice President of Duke University Health System stated that, “Rogers was recruited to build a world-class heart failure program in partnership with surgical director Carmelo Milano, MD. Under their leadership, Duke’s Heart Failure & Heart Transplant program became one of the most productive clinical and research units in the nation. The program also provided medical and surgical training for a new generation of clinicians and expanded Duke’s influence into heart programs across the country and in Europe.”

Rogers has worked across the Duke Heart team to establish Duke as an international leader in cardiac transplantation and Left Ventricular Assist Device therapy. Through his leadership roles in clinical care and multi-center clinical trials, he was launched to international prominence with pivotal roles including his current position as President of the International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation.

“Duke Heart has an incredible and unique culture,” Rogers added. “I think it allows the latitude to be creative and to be innovative and to explore clinical care, science and education. My hope for Duke Heart is that we never lose that spirit, because it really is what has distinguished Duke Heart internationally in cardiovascular medicine.”

Please join us in congratulating Joe! We look forward to celebrating with him during his remaining time at Duke as well as partnering with him in this next chapter of his career.


Fortin to Receive SOM’s 2021 Master Clinician/Teacher Award

Terry Fortin

Congratulations to Terry Fortin, MD who will receive the Duke School of Medicine Master Clinician/Teacher Award for 2021! The award was created for the purpose of honoring individuals for superlative accomplishment and service in the area of Medical School/Medical Center teaching and/or clinical care. The intent is to honor those individuals who have made an extraordinary commitment “above and beyond” normal expectations, and who you might consider an “unsung hero” at Duke.

Dr. Edward G. Buckley, Vice Dean for Education in the Duke School of Medicine, shared the news in an email to Fortin and Kathleen Cooney, MD, Chair of the Department of Medicine on Friday afternoon, adding “You certainly met the criteria and are most deserving of the honor.”

The award will be presented at the annual Faculty meeting. Due to the COVID-19 crisis, that date has not been set yet.

Congratulations, Terry, on a well-deserved award that captures a small amount of what you mean to our patients, trainees, and colleagues!

Home Based Cardiac Rehab Telehealth Program Launched

Following a successful 20 patient pilot beginning in March 2020, Duke Heart launched the next phase of Home-Based Cardiac Rehabilitation with telehealth billing. The program allows for patients to benefit from a personalized exercise program via a mobile app, remote monitoring devices and group zoom sessions with an exercise physiologist.

Planning for a mobile program at Duke has been underway since 2018. Following a year and a half co-development with Pattern Health, a local app development company, Duke Heart has a groundbreaking home-based program offering. Our mobile cardiac rehab program will work to address barriers of participation and onsite rehab capacity constraints, which have only intensified with COVID-19 infection prevention measures, by providing patients the option of completing a hybrid of onsite and home-based rehab for the 36 sessions of cardiac rehab. The use of devices for remote monitoring offers the ability to monitor and record biometrics including steps, heart rate, and ECG rhythm strips.

Dr. William Kraus has been an extraordinary leader in this effort by providing constant direction for our internal program, as well as the national conversations occurring in this space. Many thanks for the expertise from advanced planning to daily execution of the program by Karen CraigSean Lowers, Beth Summers, Cathy Ritchey and Brian Duscha. Thanks to Maria Carroll who has led this project, and to Jill Engel and Manesh Patel for their continued support in this effort. Our colleagues in Digital Strategy, PRMO and Compliance have also been instrumental, including Donna Phinney, Julie Peele Breuer, Dion Brown, Marianne Durling, Deserae Brooks and Ally Alexander. 

Great job, everyone! This opportunity will be critical to many of our heart patients over the coming weeks and months. Stand by for future updates as Duke partners with industry and other health systems to evaluate how this program might be a standard in cardiac rehabilitation care. 

Daniel Friedman, MD, to Join Duke EP Faculty, Summer 2021

Daniel J. Friedman, MD, will be returning to Duke University this summer to join the Cardiac Electrophysiology faculty in the Duke Heart Center. Dr. Friedman completed his internal medicine training at the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston and completed his cardiology and cardiac electrophysiology fellowships here at Duke. He is also a graduate of the Duke Clinical Research Institute Fellowship Program. He is presently an Assistant Professor of Medicine at the Yale School of Medicine.

Clinically, Friedman is focused on the care of patients with complex heart rhythm disorders, especially those with atrial fibrillation and heart failure. He is an active clinical investigator with special interests in physiologic pacing (His & left bundle branch pacing), cardiac resynchronization therapy, subcutaneous defibrillator therapy, and the invasive treatment of atrial fibrillation. He has more than 70 publications in the field of heart rhythm medicine. His research has appeared in leading journals, including JAMA, JAMA Cardiology, JACC, and HeartRhythm. His practice in the Duke Health System will be split between Duke University Hospital and Duke Raleigh Hospital and Clinics. In addition, he will be an active member of the EP Section at the Durham Veterans Affairs Medical Center, where he will be focusing on the development of a left atrial appendage occlusion program for our veterans.

The Duke EP Faculty are thrilled to have Dr. Friedman returning to our program. We are confident that Dr. Friedman will make significant contributions to all aspects of our mission, including the delivery of state-of-the-art clinical care to the people of Wake County and North Carolina. We are also excited to see him continue his impressive track-record in the conduct of innovative and impactful clinical research.

Welcome the new member of the Nanna Family!

Giovanni “Gianni” Daniel Nanna was born 7 lbs, 3 Oz at 2:05 am today. Mike reports that they are already working on his baseball swing. Mom and baby are recovering and doing great!  Congratulations to them and this is a special time to enjoy.


Shout-Out to Abraham!

Dennis Abraham

Shout-out to Dennis Abraham – in a note from Lisa Clark Pickett, we learned of a great compliment DUHS received about him from a patient:

“Dr. Abraham is one of the most compassionate physicians I have encountered”

Pickett added that she was, “Delighted to read this lovely compliment about you on our Patient Satisfaction Survey. Thank you for providing such excellent, compassionate care!!!”

Way to go, Dennis!




Shout-out to Corley & Narcisse!

We learned this week of a challenging patient case in the ED earlier in the week; Ali Corley and Dennis Narcisse were there to troubleshoot. In a note to Anna Lisa Crowley:

“I wanted to let you know how awesome two of your fellows were last night.

“We had a patient in the ED with high concern for a type a dissection who had an anaphylactic allergy to contrast preventing us from getting a CTA chest, pacemaker/ICD incompatible with MR for MRA chest and there were no ICU fellows or attendings in the hospital who were able to perform a TEE.

“Both Dennis and Ali spent no less than two hours helping troubleshoot and advocate for the patient. They documented benefits>>risks for disabling the device for the MRA and one of them went to radiology with the patient in order to get the study done. They also helped with a bedside TTE looking for an arch dissection and helped interrogate the device to sort out a wide-complex tachycardia with aberrancy when the patient’s morphology changed and [the patient] dropped from severely hypertensive on arrival, to controlled with esmolol, to severely hypotensive off it.

This was one of the most stressful and logistically complicated cases I’ve had in residency that was littered with systems issues but they both really stepped up and our ED team appreciated how much they did. I suspect the patient and their family felt the same way.” — Pat Kelly, EM PGY2

Wow! Great job, Ali and Dennis!


Incoming Cardiology Fellow Awarded with Duke Golden Apple

We learned this morning in a message to Anna Lisa Crowley from Saumil Chudgar, the Assistant Dean for Clinical Education in the Duke School of Medicine, that incoming first-year Cardiology fellow (and current Internal Medicine resident) Lonnie Sullivan, MD, was awarded the resident Duke Golden Apple award during the annual Duke SOM student faculty show, which was held virtually this year due to the pandemic.

The Golden Apple award is voted on annually by the Duke medical students to recognize resident, pre-clinical and clinical faculty for their teaching excellence and commitment to the Duke medical students.



The remaining Golden Apple awards were presented to:

  • Clinical Faculty – Aimee Chung, MD
  • Preclinical Faculty – John Roberts, MD

In the note to Crowley and the awardees this morning, Chudgar added: “We have such passionate and amazing trainees and faculty in the DOM, so it was great to see them recognized for their teaching excellence and their commitment to our students. Thank you to the awardees for all they do for our students.”

Way to go Lonnie!


Reminder: Vote! Best Hospitals Survey Open Through 26th

Voting for U.S. News Best Hospitals is open in Doximity through March 26, 2021. To vote, physicians can visit Doximity.com or the survey page on Doximity.com. The survey will display until the physician votes or the survey closes.


COVID-19 Updates:

All the latest official DUHS information regarding coronavirus/COVID-19 response at the following locations:


Upcoming Opportunities/Save the Date:

Cardiology Grand Rounds

Mar. 23: If You Build It… (They) Will Come – Advanced Therapies in ACHD with Jonathan Menachem of Vanderbilt University Medical Center. 5 p.m., Webex.

March 30: TBD

April 6: Management of POTS with Camille Frazier-Mills. 5 p.m., Webex.

April 13: Advancing Gender Equity in Global Cardiovascular Health Outcomes with Zainab Samad of Aga Khan University. 7:15 a.m., Webex.

April 20: Spontaneous Coronary Artery Dissection with Esther (Soo Hyun) Kim of Vanderbilt University Medical Center. 5 p.m., Webex.

April 27: Cardio-Oncology: Moving Forward in 2021 with Daniel J. Lenihan, Director, Cardio-Oncology Center of Excellence, Washington University in St. Louis. 5 p.m., Webex.


Upcoming (Virtual) 2021 Duke Heart CME

We have dates set for three upcoming virtual symposia; registration is not yet available.

May 14: Duke Sports Cardiology & Sudden Death in Athletes Symposium. Course directors are Jim Daubert and Bill Kraus.

October 8: Duke Advanced Heart Failure Symposium. Course director is Richa Agarwal

November 5:  13th Annual NC Research Triangle Pulmonary Hypertension Symposium. Course directors are Terry Fortin and Jimmy Ford (UNC).


Six-Part Mental Health Webinar Series Available Through April

Mar. 31: Understanding and Preventing Suicide in Adults. 4-4:30 p.m. Hosted by the Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences and led by associate professor Nathan Kimbrel, PhD (Link below)

This is the fourth in a six-part webinar series, “Taking Care of Yourself and Your Loved Ones,” for all Duke University and Duke Health community members and their families. The 30-minute topical webinars provide practical expert advice on topics including emotional wellness, substance misuse, suicide prevention, and mental health for children, adolescents and teens.

The webinar series runs through April 27. Learn more, watch past webinars and join upcoming webinars:  http://bit.ly/DukeMHSeries.


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:

March 12 — Vanessa Blumer


Women Treated for Acute HF Report Worse QoL Than Men


March 12 — Ann Marie Navar, Matthew Engelhard and Michael Pencina


To Predict Mortality After MI, Machine Learning Needs Better Intel


March 12 — Brian C. Mac Grory (neurology)


AHA: Symptom recognition, data on treatment of central retinal artery occlusion lacking


March 15 — Manesh Patel


Heart condition linked to COVID is sidelining otherwise healthy young athletes


March 16 — L. Kristin Newby


Invasive Approach Best for Cocaine-Linked NSTEMI, but DAPT Is Key


March 18 — Harry Severance


‘Vaccine passports’ shouldn’t be a passport to undue risk: experts


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