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Advocate Spotlight: Dr. Varadendra Panchamukhi

Health is Why!


What brought you to be an advocate for the American Heart Association?

As a Cardiologist I am in direct communication with my patients regarding their heart health. Some issues need regulations and non-biased without conflict of interest solutions and I felt the AHA advocacy committee did just that. I started as an ACC liaison and stayed in the committee as a full time member.

What issues or policies are you most passionate about and why?

Acute Myocardial infarction care is a very important subject close to my heart. As an Interventional Cardiologist I strive hard to minimize the door to balloon time as much as possible so that it makes a lasting difference to the patient's life by preserving heart muscle at risk. Lack of adequate education in the population we serve, paucity of funds for rural healthcare services and lack of regulations to ensure quality and recommended standards for management of AMI patients are issues that I continue to focus on. Childhood and adult obesity and their consequences there of are also issues that I am passionate about. The AHA advocacy committee shares my passion and provides me the perfect forum to work on these issues.

What is your favorite advocacy memory or experience so far and what made it great?

I was actively involved with Julie Mirstov in getting the STEMI legislation drafted to reflect the issues that I am passionate about. Hopefully one of these days it will pass through legislation.
I felt proud to represent southern Illinois in the Illinois state STEMI systems of care conference. It really felt good to know that we provide The Best care for our patients in the rural community that we live in.

What is your favorite way to be active?

I like to participate in discussion regarding the issues mentioned above. I like to present the data that we have gathered and share my experience in improving the quality of cardiovascular care for the entire state and the country.

What is your favorite fruit or vegetable?

Favorite Fruit: Mango and Pineapple
Favorite Vegetable: cauliflower and bell peppers

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