Guest blogger Albert Pylinski is a member of the Greater Utica area advisory board and the Founders Affiliate advisory board for the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association
In November, I had the pleasure of attending the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions. The event is the largest annual gathering of cardiovascular scientists, researchers, doctors, physicians, and clinicians in the world. This year, Scientific Sessions was held in New Orleans. There are so many aspects of Scientific Sessions that truly exemplify what I, as a volunteer, hope to help deliver for the American Heart Association.
I spent two days at Scientific Sessions, among some incredibly smart people. The experience was eye opening for me. I met doctors, researchers, and volunteers. I listened to Star Jones tell the story of her near death experience with heart disease. I had the opportunity to observe once living hearts and see for myself the defects and holes between the hearts’ chambers. I learned about the promise of technology in the medical world and how high end innovators are trying to solve the same problems as the American Heart Association.
I learned about One Brave Idea – the $75 million dollar grant from the American Heart Association, Verily (formerly Google Life Sciences) and pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca. Dr. Calum MacRae won the One Brave Idea contest. He and his team want to find a way to detect coronary heart disease long before traditional problems appear.
I don’t pretend to understand most of what I heard at Scientific Sessions. This was a gathering of experts who understand heart disease far better than you or I do. I count myself lucky to have had the opportunity to be part of such an incredible experience. Seeing the work being done around the world to fight our number one killer was inspiring and impressive.