Helping Congress Transform Cardiovascular Care

This post was authored by Michelle Hadley, DO, a fellow in training at St. Vincent Hospital in Worcester, MA.

I have always wanted to be impactful. In October, I attended ACC’s 2015 Legislative Conference in Washington, DC. We met with our representatives on the House side, as well as with our senators. Unfortunately at that time, my district congressman was not in DC. Therefore, I took it upon myself to schedule a meeting in Worcester, MA, to meet with him.

Rep. Jim McGovern’s (D-MA) office was a big, open floor plan. All the side doors were open and every turn seemed to be greeted with a smiling face. Before I had time to completely take off my coat, the congressman walked out to introduce himself and extended his hand with a pleasant smile.  Continue reading

ACC.16 Video Highlights – Day 3

See more insightful interviews on the hottest topics and Late-Breaking Clinical Trials from the last day of ACC.16 on the ACC’s ACC.16 YouTube Playlist. For comprehensive coverage of the meeting from the fellow perspective, see the full list of FITs on the GO videos on ACC’s FITs on the Go YouTube Playlist. The FITs on the GO video blog provides an FIT perspective of the meeting, featuring interviews with top experts and cardiovascular leaders on news and events taking place at ACC.16. Highlights from the third day include:

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2016 ACC/Merck Fellows Honored During 35th Anniversary Reception

The ACC/Merck Fellowship Program celebrated its 35th anniversary on April 2 during the ACC.16 Merck Awards Reception. This unique program has provided support to four fellows in training (FITs) seeking to launch careers in cardiovascular research. Over the past 35 years, Merck has generously offered almost 200 fellowships.

In selecting applications, proposals addressing cardiovascular disease and cardiometabolic disorders are encouraged, as well as proposals focusing on clinically relevant outcomes as a result of the metabolic syndrome, diabetes or obesity. Preference for one award is given to applicants focusing on disparities of care since despite increased attention to health disparities at the national, state and community levels, relatively little progress has been made in achieving the vision of eliminating racial and ethnic health disparities.

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ACC’s First Leadership Academy Cohort Presents Capstone Projects at ACC.16

This post was authored by Rosanne Nelson, an ACC staff member focused on member leadership development and the facilitator of ACC’s Leadership Academy.

Two years ago, a diverse group of 14 early career and Fellows-in-Training members of the ACC came together as strangers in a room. Each had been appointed to Cohort I of the College’s inaugural Leadership Academy program, the ACC program serves to meet our early career / FIT members where they need to be met, and supports leadership challenges in diverse practice areas. Few in the room during our initial meeting knew what to expect. As the leadership development program facilitator, I too was experiencing this program for the first time, and even upon our first meeting, I was amazed by their thirst for knowledge, and humbled by their admission of wanting to ‘lead better.’ As such, we set off to learn and lead together. Admittedly, the path was not as clear at the start. However, this group was eager, open, and honest about what they needed. Thus, a recipe for success was well underway. Continue reading

#Cardiology Ontology: Using Hashtags to Improve #CVD Care

This post was authored by R. Jay Widmer, MD, PhD (@DrArgyle);  Carolyn M. Larsen, MD (@carolynmarieMN); Robert A. Harrington, MD, FACC (@HeartBobH); T. Jared Bunch, MD (@TJaredBunch); John P. Erwin, III, MD, FACC (@HeartOTXHeartMD); John M. Mandrola, MD, FACC (@drjohnm); and Farris K. Timimi, MD, FACC (@FarrisTimimi), members of the Cardiovascular Symplur Ontology Project.

Following in the footsteps of several other specialties, cardiology now has a hashtag ontology page dedicated to facilitating social media use for providers and the wider health care community. The aim of the cardiology ontology page is to assemble and disseminate hashtags pertinent to cardiovascular diseases. This enables health care professionals, patients and family members to organize discussions surrounding cardiovascular medicine in an effort to keep the interest of the patient foremost.

We often hear, “Oh it’s so vast and overwhelming, there’s no way I could be on Twitter” when approaching colleagues about a recent fruitful encounter on one of the largest social media platforms in the world. Although cardiology only occupies a small fraction of the over 300 million viewers and billions of tweets generated daily on Twitter, the potential value cardiovascular disease providers can garner and large impact they can have on public health is beyond immense. However, just like any medication or therapy we suggest or prescribe to our patients, social media must be palatable and easily navigated in order to have broad uptake. One means by which this can be accomplished is by codifying a set of terms common in cardiology, and much like our colleagues in oncology, radiation oncology, and recently urology, providing a cardiovascular ontology around which patients and providers can easily identify specific entities within the world of cardiology. Continue reading

And It’s Going, Going, Gone! ACC Knocks It Out of the Park at Big Sky

SK_headshotThis article was authored by Sandeep K. Krishnan, MD, a fellow in training (FIT) at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, CA.

The ACC has done it again! Another home run for the FIT team! I recently had the good fortune of attending the Teaching Tomorrow’s Teachers (3T’s) program embedded into ACC’s 38th Annual Cardiology at Big Sky conference. It was a conference like no other I have ever attended.

By itself, the ACC Big Sky conference is a unique entity. For five days starting every President’s Day weekend in mid-February, Kim Eagle, MD, MACC, and Patrick T. O’Gara, MD, MACC, host this highly-informative conference surrounded by the beautiful snow-capped peaks of Big Sky, MT, in and of itself a small, charming town located 1.5 hours away from the nearest airport. Continue reading

National Cardiac Rehab Week: Encouraging Patient Education and Participation

Richard Josephson headshot Derin Tugal headshotThis post was authored by Richard A. Josephson, MS, MD, FACC, member of the ACC Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease Section Leadership Council, and Derin Tugal, MD, a fellow in training at Case Medical Center, University Hospitals of Cleveland and a member of the ACC Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease Section.

Cardiac rehabilitation (rehab) offers patients with coronary artery disease (CAD), recent revascularizations or cardiac surgery, or heart failure, a comprehensive individualized program of supervised exercise, health education, advice on lifestyle behavior modification, physical activity and psychological stress management. There is growing appreciation of the benefit of exercise-based cardiac rehab on reduced cardiovascular mortality, morbidity, unplanned hospitalizations, exercise capacity, health-related quality of life and psychological well-being. Continue reading

Fitness For the FIT: Practicing What You Preach

Nicholas Ierovante_Cardiology_PGY-4This post was authored by Nick Ierovante, DO, a fellow in training (FIT) at the Wright Center For Graduate Medical Education.

As I sat in the office discussing Mr. R’s recent hospitalization, I felt fine discussing his cath findings, percutaneous coronary intervention and new medications. Though soon after, I noticed a familiar apprehensiveness coming from myself. As I was discussing his statin regimen, the little voice in my head started quietly whispering. As I started to discuss his cardiac rehab and diet modifications, it grew louder. By the time I was discussing daily activity recommendations, my inner monologue was screaming “HYPOCRITE!!!”   Continue reading