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Event Description

This innovative program will follow a 59-year-old woman with obesity, hypertension, diabetes, and hyperlipidemia from her initial ED visit for chest pain through her hospital course and post-discharge visit. Hear from world- renowned speakers on the following topics:
  • Risk factors and lifestyle contributors to cardiovascular disease
  • Inpatient management of patients with MI, repercussion, shock, and imminent heart failure
  • Discharge planning, including follow-up, medication regimens, counseling, etc.
  • Tips for successful at-home recovery and avoiding readmission
This program is designed for physicians, nurses, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, pharmacists, cardiac rehab specialists, and other professionals involved in cardiac care.

Event Location

The Fairmont Copley Plaza

This luxury downtown Boston landmark hotel has been a symbol of the city’s rich history and elegance since its gala opening in 1912. Centrally located in Boston’s historic Back Bay, Fairmont Copley Plaza sits steps away from the Boston Public Library, historic Beacon Hill, and the Freedom Trail. This historic landmark Back Bay hotel is a luxury four diamond property located only a few blocks from the Hynes Convention Center, Copley Place Mall and the boutiques of Newbury Street.


5:15PM - 6:00PM 


6:00PM - 6:05PM 

Welcome and Introductions
Gregory Piazza, MD, MS

6:05PM - 6:10PM 

Case Introduction
Zaid Almarzooq, MBBCh

6:10PM - 6:30PM 

“Could This Have Been Predicted?”
Jorge Plutzky, MD

6:30PM - 6:35PM 

Question and Answer Session
Gregory Piazza, MD, MS

6:35PM - 6:40PM 

Case Update 1: Triage and Medical Decision-Making in the ED
Zaid Almarzooq, MBBCh

6:40PM - 7:00PM 

“In-Hospital Care: Starting the Road to Recovery”
Navin Kapur, MD, FAHA, FACC, FSCAI

7:00PM - 7:20PM 

“Mending a Broken Heart in 2019”
Michael Givertz, MD

7:20PM - 7:25PM 

Question and Answer Session
Gregory Piazza, MD, MS

7:25PM - 7:30PM 

Case Update 2: Patient Discharge Planning
Zaid Almarzooq, MBBCh

7:30PM - 7:50PM 

Keynote Presentation: “From Hospital to Home: Optimizing Transitions by Putting Patients First – A VA Experience”
Jennifer Ballard-Hernandez, DNP, AACC, FAHA, FAANP

7:50PM - 7:55PM 

Question and Answer Session
Gregory Piazza, MD, MS

7:55PM - 8:00PM 

Case Update 3: The First Post-Discharge Appointment
Zaid Almarzooq, MBBCh

8:00PM - 8:20PM 

“Home Is Where the Heart Should Be: Avoiding Readmission After a CV Event”
Akshay Suvas Desai, MD, MPH

8:20PM - 8:30PM 

Final Question and Answer Session


Jennifer Ballard-Hernandez, DNP, AACC, FAHA, FAANP
Cardiology Nurse Practitioner and Clinical Nurse Advisor at Tibor Rubin VA Medical Center, Long Beach, CA

Dr. Jennifer Ballard-Hernandez is the Cardiology Clinical Nurse Advisor to the Office of Nursing Services for VA Central Office. She is field based at the Tibor Rubin VA Medical Center in Long Beach, California where she works as a cardiology nurse practitioner. Dr. Ballard-Hernandez is an Assistant Clinical Professor for the University of California, Irvine, School of Nursing. Her clinical practice focuses on general cardiology, advanced heart failure, and chronic disease management. Dr. Ballard-Hernandez completed her family nurse practitioner training at the University of California, Irvine, her acute care nurse practitioner training at the University of Pennsylvania, and her Doctor of Nursing Practice Degree at the Western University of Health Sciences. Dr. Ballard-Hernandez serves on several national professional committees and is currently appointed to the Federal Cardiology Section Leadership Council for the American College of Cardiology.
As a clinician and nurse-scientist, Dr. Ballard-Hernandez has published her work in several peer reviewed journals and has lectured nationally for multiple professional organizations on a variety of cardiology topics including heart failure, cardiac stress testing, atrial fibrillation, and care transitions. She is appointed to the VA/DOD Hypertension and Dyslipidemia Clinical Practice Guidelines Writing Group. Her research interests include examining the application of palliative care in heart failure and pharmacologic research for heart failure and atrial fibrillation. Dr. Ballard-Hernandez has served as both principal and co-investigator in multiple clinical trials.

Akshay Suvas Desai, MD, MPH
Director, Cardiomyopathy and Heart Failure Program, Brigham and Women’s Hospital Associate Professor, Harvard Medical School

Dr. Akshay Suvas Desai is a cardiovascular medicine specialist and the director of the Cardiomyopathy and Heart Failure Program at Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH). In addition, he is an associate professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School (HMS).
Dr. Desai received his medical degree from HMS. He completed an internal medicine residency, as well as fellowships in cardiovascular medicine, vascular medicine and advanced heart disease at BWH. He is board certified in cardiovascular disease, as well as advanced heart failure and transplant cardiology.
His clinical interests include advanced heart failure, cardiomyopathies (myocarditis, amyloidosis, sarcoidosis), congenital heart disease and cardiac transplantation. The author of over 80 peer-reviewed publications, Dr. Desai’s research focuses on improving care and outcomes for heart failure patients, as well as strategies to reduce heart failure readmissions. His research has received support from the American College of Cardiology and the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute.

Michael M. Givertz, MD
Medical Director, Heart Transplant and Mechanical Circulatory Support at Brigham and Women's Hospital

Michael M. Givertz, MD is Medical Director of the Heart Transplant and Mechanical Circulatory Support Program at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. His research interests include cardiorenal syndrome and novel therapies for advanced heart disease. He is a past research fellow of the American Heart Association and recipient of a career development award from the National Institutes of Health. He is currently a principal investigator in the NHLBI Heart Failure Network, and a co-investigator in several other NIH-funded programs, including the NIAID Clinical Trials in Organ Transplantation and NIH Peripartum Cardiomyopathy Network. He is the immediate past chair of the Scientific Statements Committee of the Heart Failure Society of America and co-author of the 2017 ACCF/AHA/HFSA Guideline for the Management of Heart Failure. He has published widely on heart failure pathophysiology and management, with a focus on advanced heart disease and mechanical circulatory support.

Navin K. Kapur, MD, FAHA, FACC, FSCAI
Associate Professor in the Department of Medicine and Division of Cardiology at Tufts Medical Center

Dr. Kapur is an Associate Professor in the Department of Medicine and Division of Cardiology. Dr. Kapur is the Executive Director of the CardioVascular Center for Research and Innovation (CVCRI), Director of the Acute Circulatory Support Program, Director of the Interventional Research Laboratory, and Director of the Cardiac Biology Research Center at Tufts Medical Center. He is a dual, board-certified Interventional Cardiologist and Advanced Heart Failure/Cardiac Transplant specialist. Several of his mentees have received young investigator awards from the ACC, HFSA, AHA, and Northwestern University Young Investigator Forum. His clinical expertise focuses on invasive hemodynamics, mechanical circulatory support, complex percutaneous coronary intervention, and interventional therapies for patients with advanced heart failure. Dr. Kapur founded several clinical and research fellowships at Tufts Medical Center including the Robert Kung Interventional Heart Failure Fellowship Program. He serves on multiple national committees involved with the American Heart Association, the American College of Cardiology, the Heart Failure Society of America, and the Society for Cardiac Angiography and Interventions. Dr. Kapur’s translational research focuses on large animal models of acute and chronic heart failure, circulatory support device development, and cardioprotective mechanisms in the setting of acute myocardial infarction. His laboratory was the first to identify that acute mechanical unloading of the left ventricle activates a cardioprotective signaling program in the setting of acute myocardial infarction. He serves as Principal Investigator for several trials involving acute mechanical support including the Door to Unloading Trial testing the safety and feasibility of LV unloading prior to reperfusion in ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction. As an Investigator in the Molecular Cardiology Research Institute at Tufts Medical Center, Dr. Kapur’s basic science laboratory focuses on molecular mechanisms governing maladaptive cardiac remodeling in heart failure. His particular expertise involves signaling via the transforming growth factor beta (TGFb) system. Over the past 7 years, the laboratory has published several critical papers focused on a TGFb co-receptor known as endoglin and was the first to establish that reduced endoglin activity improves survival and limits maladaptive cardiac remodeling in heart failure. The laboratory further demonstrated that targeting endoglin using an antibody-mediated approach not only limits the development of cardiac fibrosis, but can reverse established cardiac fibrosis in preclinical models of heart failure. More recently, the laboratory was the first to identify a functional role for bone morphogenetic protein 9 (BMP9) in heart failure. Dr. Kapur is the inventor of several patents focused on heart failure device and drug therapy development. Dr. Kapur is the recipient of grant funding from the National Institutes of Health, American Heart Association, and several industry sponsors.

Jorge Plutzky, MD
Director, Preventive Cardiology at Brigham and Women's Hospital

Jorge Plutzky, M.D. is Director, Preventive Cardiology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) and on the Harvard Medical School faculty. In his position within Preventive Cardiology, Dr. Plutzky directs the BWH Lipid Clinic and the BWH Pollin Center for Women’s Cardiovascular Health. Dr. Plutzky is a recognized expert on preventive cardiology issues with a particular focus on how metabolic abnormalities like diabetes, obesity and dyslipidemia impact atherosclerosis. These interests are evident in his NIH-funded basic science laboratory that studies transcriptional mechanisms governing lipid metabolism, inflammation, adipogenesis and atherosclerosis as well as in his translational clinical research projects. A focus of ongoing bench research includes the role of endogenous modulation of nuclear receptor activity, including retinoid receptor effects on thermogenesis, and transcriptional control via epigenetic reader proteins. His interdisciplinary perspective spanning basic science and clinical medicine as well as metabolism and cardiovascular disease has led to roles for Dr. Plutzky with the Food and Drug Administration as a member of the Endocrine, Metabolism and Diabetes Advisory Committee, as Project Lead for novel BWH Cardiovascular Innovation’s lipid and diabetes management programs, as a collaborator on several NIH-sponsored clinical research studies and his involvement with the American Diabetes Association and the American Heart Association, where he is the Chair-Elect for the AHA’s Diabetes Committee. A past chair of the Sarnoff Cardiovascular Research Foundation’s Scientific Committee, Dr. Plutzky’s contributions have been recognized with the University of Cologne’s Klenck Award, Harvard Medical School’s Tucker Collins Lecture, the University of Michigan’s Parke Willis Hurst Visiting Professorship and the Braunwald Teaching Award.

Dr. Plutzky received his B.A., With Highest Distinction, as an Echol’s Scholar from the University of Virginia and his M.D. from the University of North Carolina, with distinction for research accomplishments during medical school through an NIH fellowship (Gerald Crabtree, MD). Internal medicine residency and cardiology fellowship were all completed at Brigham and Women’s Hospital/Harvard Medical School, which included a post-doctoral research fellowship at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Benjamin Neel, MD, PhD and Robert D. Rosenberg, MD, PhD).

Zaid Almarzooq, MBBCh
Fellow in Cardiovascular MedicineVisit Website >

Zaid Almarzooq is a Clinical Fellow in the Division of Cardiovascular Medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital / Harvard Medical School. He earned his medical degree from the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI) and completed his internal medicine residency at New York Presbyterian Hospital – Weill Cornell Medicine; where he also served as Chief Medical Resident. He is also an active member of the board of directors of the National Residency Matching Program.

Join NATF in the fight against blood clots. Donate today.

Make a donation

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