FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Dina Santucci
Sanjay Gupta, M.D., FSCCT, Neurosurgeon, Author, and CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Receives 2012 Society of Cardiovascular Computed Tomography Arthur S. Agatston Cardiovascular Disease Prevention Award
Vienna, VA (June 28, 2012) - The Society of Cardiovascular Computed Tomography (SCCT) announces Dr. Sanjay Gupta as the recipient of the 2012 SCCT Arthur S. Agatston Cardiovascular Disease Prevention Award, designed to promote the prevention of death from heart disease by recognizing individuals whose pioneering efforts have saved lives from a leading killer throughout the world, coronary artery disease.
Dr. Arthur Agatston will present the award to Dr. Gupta - compassionate physician, gifted neurosurgeon, acclaimed author, incisive commentator, and humanitarian - in Baltimore, Maryland, at the SCCT Annual Scientific Meeting's Opening Session on Friday, July 20, 2012.
SCCT recognizes Dr. Gupta for his lifelong contributions to saving lives with his brilliant identification and compelling communication of the medical, social, and political requirements to achieve disease prevention. As the Emmy® Award-winning chief medical correspondent for CNN, Dr. Gupta plays an integral role in CNN's reporting on health and medical news, and he inspires Americans to lead healthier, more active lives. In particular, Dr. Gupta's challenge to society - as conveyed in "The Last Heart Attack," which aired on August 21, 2011 - was recognized by SCCT as a pivotal moment in achieving physician and public recognition of strategies essential for the prevention of death from heart disease. This report can be viewed here.
Gupta remarked, "I still remember when Dr. Agatston told me we could be on the verge of eliminating nearly all heart disease in the country, simply with better education and understanding of existing science. As a physician and reporter, I knew that needed to be told to the masses. In 'The Last Heart Attack,' we wanted to bring the message of prevention to our viewers but soundly root it in objective science. Arthur Agatston was instrumental in making that happen."
Dr. Arthur Agatston, who will present the award, is a visionary and pioneer in the field of noninvasive cardiac imaging and a leading preventive cardiologist. His scientific work, first reported in 1991 with Dr. Warren Janowitz, resulted in the Agatston Score, a method for screening patients for coronary artery disease by measuring the amount of atherosclerosis in the coronary arteries. The Agatston Score is currently used throughout the world and considered by many experts to be the single best predictor of future heart attack. To help his cardiac and diabetes patients improve their blood chemistries and lose weight, Agatston also developed a diet, which led to his first book, The South Beach Diet, a #1 New York Times bestseller. SouthBeachDiet.com allows people to receive Dr. Agatston's personalized weight loss plans from their home computer or via a mobile app by the same name. Currently, Dr. Agatston serves as the Medical Director of Wellness and Prevention at Baptist Health South Florida.
In 2011, the award's inaugural year, the recipients were William P. Castelli, M.D., FSCCT, of The Heart Center of MetroWest in Framingham, Massachusetts, and Scott M. Grundy, Ph.D., M.D., FSCCT, of the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, Texas. "The work and the concepts developed by Drs. Castelli and Grundy have had a profound effect on prevention in the field of medicine, with these visionaries having saved countless lives," noted Daniel Berman, M.D., FSCCT, past president of SCCT.
"SCCT hopes that recognizing individuals, such as Drs. Castelli and Grundy and now Dr. Gupta, for their leadership and vision in preventing disease, will be a catalyst to inspire the next generation of physicians and researchers to do even more. As we did with infectious diseases like polio and small pox, we can eradicate the killer heart disease," commented Jack Ziffer, Ph.D., M.D., FSCCT, past president of SCCT and chair of the Arthur S. Agatston Cardiovascular Disease Prevention Award Selection Committee.
SCCT is committed to offering support through research, education for physicians, and dissemination of information for the general public on the options available for the prevention of coronary artery disease.
About the Society of Cardiovascular Computed Tomography
The Society of Cardiovascular Computed Tomography (SCCT) is the professional society devoted exclusively to cardiovascular computed tomography. With members worldwide, SCCT is acknowledged and recognized as the representative and advocate for research, education, and clinical excellence in the use of cardiovascular computed tomography. For more information on the society's mission and goals, please visit the SCCT Website at www.SCCT.org.