The Worldwide Challenge of Cardiovascular Disease

Top Cardiologist Dr. Valetin Fuster Presents at Joint K.B. Taylor Memorial and Annual WINDREF Research Lecture Series.

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L to R: Dr. Macpherson, Dr. Beaubrun, Dr. Fuster (WINDREF speaker), and Dr. Modica

St. George’s University Charter Hall on the True Blue campus was recently filled with more than 650 attendees of the joint K.B. Taylor Memorial-WINDREF Research Lecture. Delivered by renowned cardiologist Dr. Valetin Fuster, this year’s topic “The Worldwide Challenge of Cardiovascular Disease” provided attendees with an insightful analysis of this global health problem.

Dr. Fuster spoke at length about the various issues of cardiovascular disease, including the disparity between developed and developing nations both in terms of the cost of health care as well as the allocation of spending towards preventative care versus treatment. He stated, “We talk about treating disease rather than talking about promoting health. Educating the public about cardiovascular health is one of the most important and difficult things to accomplish,” said Fuster. “You need passion and you need funding.” Not surprisingly Dr. Fuster is actively involved with several projects aimed at effecting change through behavior modification, including the Grenada Heart Project and an awareness campaign in Bogota that works with Sesame Street to bring the message of heart health to children.

Dr. Fuster’s ability to present highly technical material in language that all in the audience were able to relate to resulted in a presentation that was well received and appreciated by the students, medical practioners/professionals, and members of the general public who were in attendance. Commenting on Dr. Fuster’s unique blend of passion and dedication to his work, St. George’s University Chancellor, Charles Modica said, “He has that idealism that many of our students have today, that you get at the age of 18, 19, or 20. There are some people {like Dr. Fuster} on this earth that never lose it and there are some people on this earth that make a difference.”

Dr. Fuster serves The Mount Sinai Medical Center as Director of Mount Sinai Heart, the Zena and Michael A. Wiener Cardiovascular Institute and the Maire-Josée and Henry R. Kravis Center for Cardiovascular Health. He is the Richard Gorlin, MD/Heart Research Foundation Professor, Mount Sinai School of Medicine. Dr. Fuster was the President of Science and is not the General Director of the Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Cardiovasculares Carlos III (CNIC) in Madrid, Spain.

Among the seemingly countless positions of distinction that he holds are Past President of the American Heart Association, Past President of the World Heart Federation, Member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences where he serves as Chair of the committee on Preventing the Global Epidemic of Cardiovascular Disease, former member of the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute Advisory Council, and former Chairman of the Fellowship Training Directors Program of the American College of Cardiology. Twenty-six distinguished universities throughout the world have granted him Honorary Doctorate Degrees.

St. George’s University is honored to have had this rare privilege and we thank Dr. Fuster for his insightful presentation.