South Asians are underrepresented in studies of cardiovascular health, yet they face greater risks of cardiovascular disease and high blood pressure.
To bring this community’s health to the forefront, the American Heart Association’s Go Red for Women campaign in Boston launched a webinar series called A Conversation From the Heart. The conversations are moderated by Dr. Ami Bhatt, the director of outpatient cardiology at Massachusetts General Hospital and a professor at Harvard Medical School.
The next webinar in the series will be held on Tuesday, Jan. 5 at 7 p.m., and feature a conversation with Dr. Krishna Aragam. Dr. Aragam’s presenation — “COVID-19 Prevention, Vaccine, Cardiac Effects and Allergies” — will focus on the relationship between COVID-19 and the heart.
Dr. Aragam is a cardiologist and cardiovascular geneticist at the Massachusetts General Hospital and a member of the Cardiovascular Disease Initiative at the Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT. His research focuses on understanding the genetic determinants of cardiovascular diseases with an emphasis on coronary artery disease and heart failure.
In addition, he investigates the implementation of population genetic data to inform primary and secondary cardiovascular prevention. Complementing his research efforts, Dr. Aragam is a core faculty member within the MGH Cardiovascular Genetics Program and the MGH Cardiovascular Disease Prevention Center, and directs the clinical management of patients and family members with a confirmed or suspected genetic predisposition to myocardial infarction and/or cardiomyopathy.
We hope you’ll join the conversation!
December Webinar with Dr. Darshan Mehta
The fourth webinar in the From the Heart series was held on Dec. 1 and featured a conversation with Dr. Darshan Mehta focused on stress management and heart disease.
Dr. Mehta is an assistant professor in medicine at Harvard Medical School. He is also the director of education for the Osher Center at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School, medical director of the Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital, and interim director for the Office for Well-Being with the Center for Faculty Development at Massachusetts General Hospital.
Dr. Mehta’s educational and research interests include curricular development in complementary and integrative medical therapies, mind/body educational interventions in health professions training and promotion of professionalism in medical trainees.
November Webinar with Dr. Poonam Velagapudi
The third webinar in the From the Heart series was held on Nov. 10 and featured a conversation with Dr. Poonam Velagapudi focused on heart attacks among South Asians.
Dr. Velagapudi is a structural interventional cardiologist, assistant professor of medicine and associate program director for cardiovascular medicine fellowship at the University of Nebraska.
She is a proponent of using social media for fostering education in cardiology and serves as a social media editor for JACC: Cardiovascular Interventions journal and is an early career correspondent for ACC ACCEL Audio. She is also an associate editor for the European Heart Journal – Case Reports journal.
She is also a fellow of the American College of Cardiology and the Society for Cardiovascular Angiography and Interventions, chair of the ACC Early Career Section, past chair of the ACC Fellows in Training Section, and co-chair of the SCAI Educational Committee.
October Webinar with Dr. Namratha Kandula
The second webinar in the From the Heart series was held on Oct. 6 and featured a conversation with Dr. Namratha Kandula. She talked about her research to understand the drivers of cardiovascular disease disparities and cardiovascular health promotion in the South Asian American community
Dr. Kandula is a professor of medicine at Northwestern University, co-director of the Center for Community Health, and a primary care physician. She conducts epidemiologic studies and pragmatic community trials and leads a multisector partnership that is implementing and testing evidence-based interventions to reduce cardiovascular disparities.
The past 50 years have yielded tremendous insights into the pathophysiology, prevention and treatment of cardiovascular disease. These breakthroughs are not being equitably disseminated or implemented for vulnerable, high-burden populations. During the Oct. 6 webinar, Dr. Kandula discussed how well-designed and optimally executed dissemination and implementation studies that engage communities from the beginning will be critical for translation of scientific breakthroughs to real world populations.
September Webinar with Dr. Martha Gulati
The first webinar in the From the Heart series was held on September 1 and featured a conversation with Dr. Martha Gulati focused on South Asian women and heart health.
Dr. Gulati is a professor of medicine and the chief of cardiology at the University of Arizona. She is passionate about the study of women and heart disease, as well as about its prevention. As the principal investigator of the St. James Women Take Heart Project, a study examining cardiac risk factors in women, she’s helped to set new standards for women’s fitness levels and heart rate response to exercise in women.
In addition, she is a co-investigator on the Women Ischemic Syndrome Evaluation; she previously served as a co-investigator on the Women’s Health Initiative; she is a member of numerous advisory boards and societies, including the American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology; and she has published articles in peer-reviewed publications, such as The New England Journal of Medicine, Circulation and Journal of the American Medical Association.
Her exceptional commitment to this prevalent health issue has also won her numerous awards and distinctions.
Upcoming Webinar Sessions:
- Feb. 2, 2021: Genetics of Heart Disease in South Asians by Dr. Amit Khera & Dr. Ani Patel
- Mar. 2, 2021: Hypertension & High Blood Pressure by Dr. Kevin Shah
- Apr. 6, 2021: Testing for Heart Health by Dr. Roosha Parikh
- May 4, 2021: Exercise for Heart Disease Prevention by Dr. Sabrina Islam
For more information about this series, please email Emily.Kessler@heart.org