Assembled at Rambam’s 11th annual Department of Cardiac Surgery conference were the leading Israeli cardiac surgeons and hundreds of other physicians and nurses working in the field. In addition to presenting the latest, breakthrough high tech devices, the participants deliberated on the necessity for a multidisciplinary team approach to treatment in order to guarantee the best care. February 28, 2019, Haifa, Israel — Hundreds of doctors, nurses, and medical technologists in the field of cardiology streamed onto Rambam Health Care on Thursday, February 27, to participate in the eleventh annual cardiac surgery conference, established by Professor Gil Bolotin, Head of the hospital’s Department of Cardiac Surgery. This year, the conference theme was New Technologies in the Treatment of Heart Patients, devoted to new approaches and therapies in cardiology. The conference brought together under one roof Northern Israel’s foremost cardiologists, internists, and family doctors, together with cardiac surgeons, catheterization specialists, and more, who generally do not gather at the same meetings. The conference at Rambam stressed a multidisciplinary approach for treating cardiac diseases—including cardiac surgeons, catheterization specialists, stroke experts, and others. The first session of the conference focused on the ethical aspects of patient care with a lecture given by Professor Salman Zarka of Ziv Medical Center in Tzfat. He spoke about the issue of treating Syrian citizens in a military hospital established in the Golan Heights near the Syrian border. In the high tech field, a presentation was given of the first case in the north of the country of implantation of an advanced, new generation, device (artificial heart) that assists the left ventricle (LVAD). Implantation of an artificial heart at Rambam was performed for the first time about a month before this. Now, another cardiac procedure is available to heart patients in the region. As highlighted above, the focus of the conference this year was multidisciplinary care, or what is known as the “heart team,” which includes cardiologists, cardiac surgeons, and referral doctors. Now, before treating a heart patient, the entire heart team meets, examines all the possibilities, and decides, together, on the best treatment plan for the patient. The heart team discusses each patient, those with coronary disease and others with symptomatic problems. Collaboration among the entire heart team assures significant attention to each patient’s case and review of the array of all possible treatments. The patient is presented with the various possibilities for treatment and the unified recommendation of the heart team. Participants in the conference were briefed on recent global developments in treatment of heart failure, as well as on the hybrid approach for a minimally invasive coronary artery bypass procedure carried out by making a small incision between the ribs on the patient’s left side, performing a bypass to the most important artery of the heart. This procedure is carried out at Rambam using the Da Vinci Surgical Robot. At the start of the conference, Dr. Michael Halberthal, Rambam’s new director, welcomed the participants. A symbolic closing of the meeting was marked by a symbolic lecture from the outgoing director, Professor Rafi Beyar, who concluded thirteen years as Rambam’s director and marked 30 years as a world renown cardiologist and inventor in the field.
Photography: Pioter Flliter
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