From Our Cath Labs & ORs to the World
September 21, 2023
UH Harrington Heart & Vascular Institute | September/October 2023
Heart, vascular live cases reach thousands of physicians around the world
When University Hospitals Harrington Heart & Vascular Institute specialists perform procedures at UH Cleveland Medical Center, physicians around the world are often watching.
Over the past five years, nearly 40 peripheral and structural valve procedures have been livestreamed to doctors across the United States and in Brazil, Italy, Germany, France, India and South Asia. Through the in-house expertise of UH’s TV studio and a Media Relations strategist who is a certified broadcast engineer, UH provides these valuable services to the UH Harrington Heart & Vascular Institute for international conferences.
“Performing live cases is an extraordinary way to teach hundreds if not thousands of physicians worldwide about techniques and devices that save lives and limbs,” says Mehdi Shishehbor, DO, MPH, PhD, President of Harrington HVI, the Angela and James Hambrick Master Clinician in Innovation, and an interventional cardiologist and endovascular specialist. “It is only through collaboration and sharing of knowledge that we can advance the field of medicine and prevent morbidity and mortality. Live cases are one venue for achieving that. I am proud of our team for having a global reach.
“UH Harrington HVI’s reach goes way beyond Northeast Ohio. Live cases allow us to reach physicians all over the world.”
Benefit of an Onsite Studio
Originally, a fiber optic network facilitated the broadcasting of cases via satellite, just as they provide live interviews from UH physician experts to major news networks. Initially, a 300-foot cable run had to be connected from the cardiac catheterization labs on Mather 3 to the fiber drop, and third-party production teams from New York, Boston and Atlanta were involved with the physical production.
But Kim Fatica, a former broadcast operations director who manages UH’s TV studio at UH Cleveland Medical Center, used his expertise to change UH over to an internet-protocol TV system and bring the production in-house, saving UH time and resources. Responding to an initial request from Guilherme Attizzani, MD, Director of UH Harrington HVI’s Valve and Structural Heart Disease Center, Kim was able to produce the project at a fraction of the cost. Few hospitals have these capabilities, he noted.
Now, Kim can broadcast from any cardiac catheterization or operating room within the UH system.
Teaching TAVR to Physicians Across the Globe
UH expertise in transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR), through a case of Dr. Attizzani’s, was first broadcast to the world in 2018.
“Over the years, we have done many live case transmissions for the most important congresses all over the world, which emphasizes our leadership on these procedures,” says Dr. Attizzani, Alexander and Marianna McAfee Endowed Chair in Innovative Cardiac Interventions. “This enables colleagues to watch how procedures are performed with optimal technique while enabling the audience and a panel of experts to interact with us and ask questions regarding every step of the procedure.
“These cases helped us establish Harrington HVI’s leadership with TAVR procedures all over the world.”
Feedback from physicians abroad has been positive. Dr. Attizzani was told by the Congress President that he made TAVR look simple, with great technique and explanation while doing it.
Recorded Cases for Conferences
In addition to streaming live cases, the studio records cases that can be shown at large conferences, such as the American College of Cardiology with 13,000 participants. A recent case shared with a Transcatheter Cardiovascular Therapeutics conferences reached over 5,000 physician participants in India and other parts of Asia.
“Dr. Shishehbor and Dr. Attizzani both know the value of attracting top talent to UH,” says Kim. “The best way to do this is to show the world and the professional community that we are a leader in cardiovascular innovation, and you can’t do that by keeping your most skilled talent behind four walls.”
These live cases with a broad reach have helped establish UH Harrington Heart & Vascular Institute’s reputation.
“There is no doubt in the cardiovascular community that UH Harrington Heart & Vascular Institute is committed to advancing science and patient care globally,” Dr. Shishehbor said. “This vision has been a reason for many to join our team. These live cases are a confirmation of our vision and commitment.”