MARCH 2015  -

GW Cardiology Faculty and Fellows Present at American College of Cardiology's 64th Annual Scientific Sessions in San Diego


 The new federal "Sunshine Act" law requires  medical industry manufacturers to report all payments to physicians. Dr. Brian Choi, Dr. Hani Alhamoud, an international graduate fellow, and Ramzi Dudum, a GW third-year medical student, gave a presentation on this issue entitled "Discrepancies Between Author Self-Disclosure and Pharmaceutical Company Reporting: An Analysis of ACC and AHA Guideline Authors." Dr. Choi and colleagues found that financial disclosures made by cardiologists participating on committees responsible for publishing national guidelines for cardiac care are different than those published by manufacturers pursuant to the Sunshine Act. This suggests that the public should be wary of the data made available under the Sunshine Act. 

Another GW cardiology faculty member, Dr. William Borden, presented "Assessing the Validity of Physician Quality Reporting." Medicare and private insurers are implementing public reporting of clinical quality data and value-based purchasing programs for physicians' services. These programs raise many questions about how quality is measured. Dr. Borden's presentation assessed whether a small list of clinical quality measures correlated with quality care more than larger lists of quality measures. Dr. Borden found that smaller lists of measures did not perform as well as larger lists of measures in reflecting broader quality. His work supports ongoing Medicare efforts to expand the number of required measures.  

Dr. Jannet Lewis Investigates Awareness Campaign with Milken Institute School of Public Health

Though women have heart attacks as frequently as men, women's response to heart symptoms are often missed or delayed. In 2012 and 2013 the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services launched a mass media campaign, "Make The Call, Don't Miss A Beat." This campaign targeted women to increase their awareness of the common symptoms of a heart attack and to call 9-1-1 right away if they experience any symptoms. Dr. Jannet Lewis, director of the GW Heart & Vascular Institute's Women's Heart Center, Melissa McCarthy, ScD, MS, and Susan Wood, PhD, of GW's Milken Institute School of Public Health have been awarded a grant "Evaluation of the Make the Call, Don't Miss a Beat Campaign using the National Emergency Medical Services Information System (NEMSIS)," to evaluate the impact of this large scale, mass media campaign on the use of emergency medical services among women possibly experiencing a heart attack. Results of this study will help direct future health policy efforts for women.   

Watch a video of Make the Call, Don't Miss A Beat PSA here.

Institute Launches Smartphone Online Nutrition Consultation Study to Improve Heart Healthy Dietary Habits

Drs. Brian Choi and Richard Katz, and GW Heart & Vascular Institute's nutritionist Kelli Metzger, have launched a study with Vignet, a Virginia-based mobile health company, to investigate the benefits of dietary counseling supplied through the mobile phone application, FitNinja. FitNinja allows patients to create online food diaries with meal photos that can be reviewed by a nutritionist. Using the FitNinja web portal, our nutritionist will provide personalized dietary advice to each participant with an emphasis on adding components of a heart healthy Mediterranean diet to their daily food choices. It is our hope that this study will demonstrate that dietary counseling delivered through a smartphone can improve dietary habits in general, and enhance incorporation of elements of the Mediterranean diet into daily use.

Thank you for supporting Doctors' Day on March 30, 2015

Every year on March 30, patients and their families have a special opportunity to thank those who are most responsible for their healthcare. National Doctors' Day is an opportunity for physicians and patients to come together for the important cause of advancing medicine. A charitable gift to honor a physician at the GW Heart & Vascular Institute will give them the resources to continue their important work in research, community outreach, and education, which are essential to our goal of improving the quality of life of individuals with heart disease. To make a donation, please visit: