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August 28, 2020
September is PAD Awareness
During September, members of the vascular care community including physicians, clinicians and patient advocates are encouraged to use tools from the Cardiovascular Coalition’s dedicated awareness page to spread the word about PAD Awareness Month among colleagues, patients and friends. You can help increase understanding of this vascular disease to improve the health of many Americans.


News From Medscape
The following recommended articles on are freely available through the partnership between ABC and Medscape, no registration or login required.

Statins Linked to Reduced Mortality in COVID-19
Treatment with statins was associated with a reduced risk of a severe or fatal course of COVID-19 by 30%, a meta-analysis of four published studies has shown. In the analysis that included almost 9000 COVID-19 patients, there was a significantly reduced risk for fatal or severe COVID-19 among patients who were users of statins compared with non-users (pooled hazard ratio [HR], 0.70; 95% CI, 0.53 - 0.94).
First Evidence of SARS-CoV-2 in Heart Cells
SARS-CoV-2 has been found in cardiac tissue of a child from Brazil with multisystem inflammatory syndrome (MIS-C) related to COVID-19 who presented with myocarditis and died of heart failure. It's believed to be the first evidence of direct infection of heart muscle cells by the virus; viral particles were identified in different cell lineages of the heart, including cardiomyocytes, endothelial cells, mesenchymal cells, and inflammatory cells.
SGLT2 Inhibitors With Metformin Do Not Up Fracture Risk
The combination of sodium-glucose transporter-2 (SGLT-2) inhibitors and metformin is not associated with an increase in fracture risk among patients with type 2 diabetes (T2D), according to a new meta-analysis of 25 randomized, controlled trials.
Minorities, ASCVD Patients Go Online Less in US Survey, With Telehealth Implications
Patients with atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD) are 26% less likely to use the internet than the broad population in the United States, and even fewer Black and Hispanic ASCVD patients go online, suggests a national survey that also saw significantly less internet use among the minority groups than among White people.
In-hospital Start of Sacubitril-Valsartan Cost-Effective in HFrEF
Starting sacubitril-valsartan (Entresto) in patients hospitalized with heart failure with reduced ejection fraction (HFrEF) is not only cost-effective, but actually cost-saving, as compared with outpatient initiation, a new analysis shows. From a healthcare system perspective, initiation of sacubitril-valsartan during hospitalization saved $452 per year compared with continuing enalapril (Vasotec), and $811 per year compared with initiation at 2 months after hospitalization.

Public Listening Session

Discussion Draft of the Preliminary Framework for
Equitable Allocation of COVID-19 Vaccine

On Wednesday, September 2, from 12:00 to 5:00 pm ET, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine will host an open online session to receive public comments on a Discussion Draft of the Preliminary Framework for Equitable Allocation of COVID-19 Vaccine, as part of a study sponsored by the National Institutes of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The study will recommend priorities to inform allocation of a limited initial supply of COVID-19 vaccine, taking into account factors such as racial/ethnic and other health disparities, as well as groups at higher risk from COVID-19 due to health status, occupation, or living conditions. Input from the public, especially communities highly impacted by COVID-19, is essential to produce a final report that is objective, balanced, and inclusive.

A discussion draft of the preliminary framework will be available for download starting 24 hours in advance of the session, on Tuesday, September 1, at 12:00 pm ET. The draft can be accessed at (link not live until 12:00 pm ET on 9/1/2020).

If you would like to make a comment on September 2, please complete our speaker sign-up form (in addition to registering for the event using the signup form on the website). Please note that, due to time constraints, we cannot guarantee that all of those who sign up to make comments will be selected to do so.


Items of Interest

Black Diabetics Lose Limbs at Triple the Rate of Others. Here's How Health Care Leaders Are Starting to Act.
Prompted by a ProPublica story that [profiled Dr. Foluso Fakorede and] detailed how Black Americans with diabetes lose limbs at a rate triple that of others, the American Diabetes Association is creating an initiative, called Health Equity Now, to fight unnecessary amputations. Congress, doctors and the public are finally taking notice, too.
Researchers Explore How COVID-19 Affects Heart Health in Black Women
Nearly six months into the COVID-19 pandemic, two things have become clear: The virus profoundly impacts people with heart disease and disproportionately impacts Black people. But the many manifestations of these disparities remains unclear, particularly for one group regularly left out of medical research. (ABC President Dr. Michelle Albert and Dr. LaPrincess Brewer are quoted in this article).
Rather Than Amputate Limbs, This Black Diabetes Doctor Helps Save Them
By Foluso Fakorede, M.D
I knew I wanted to become a doctor at age five, motivated by seeing the devastating effects of disease in my family. My grandmother died of diabetes at the young age of 64. Both my parents are diabetic, and thankfully, due to my increased vigilance and preventive measures, they haven’t developed adverse complications you see, like blindness, amputations, kidney disease, and heart problems. My goal is that everyone could obtain that level of care.
Is Trauma Linked To Heart Disease in Black Women in the South? FAMU Student Seeking Answer
The groundbreaking CDC-Kaiser ACEs study took place two decades ago and is one of the largest analyses of childhood abuse and neglect impacting health and well-being later in life. About three-quarters of ACE study participants were white, according to the CDC. Windy Cunningham, a doctoral student at Florida A&M University, wants to study her own population – and a diverse sample of it. From those living in rural areas, to sexual minorities, to those living in poverty and the more middle class, she's rounding up various participants to fill out the survey on her website, the Our Heart Study. She needs about 400, and is a little less than halfway there.
Study Finds Racial Bias in the Government's Formula for Distributing COVID-19 Aid to Hospitals
The federal government has systematically shortchanged communities with large Black populations in the distribution of billions of dollars in Covid-19 relief aid meant to help hospitals struggling to manage the effects of the pandemic, according to a recent study. The study in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that the funding inequities resulted from a formula that allocated large chunks of a $175 billion relief package based on hospital revenue, instead of numbers of Covid-19 cases or other health data. The effect was to distribute more money through the federal CARES Act to large hospitals that already had the most resources, leaving smaller hospitals with large numbers of Black patients with disproportionately low funding to manage higher numbers of Covid-19 cases.

Featured Articles by Members
ABC Members: We welcome your published research submissions and articles for inclusion in future issues of Clinical Updates and Insights. Email Rachel Williams at and please attach file or include links to the original published work and/or abstract.

Disparities in Cardiovascular Medicine: Circulation's Response
Co-authored by Michelle A. Albert, and Karol E. Watson (with Joseph A. Hill, and Mercedes R. Carnethon)
At Circulation, we have a strong and abiding commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion, spanning race and ethnicity, sex and gender, age, geography, and more. Here, we pledge to redouble our efforts, using our megaphone to call out inequities. At the same time, we will look at ourselves in the mirror and scrutinize opportunities – obligations – to do better. We are positioned to do a better job than the world around us, to rise above the sad and alarming statistics we know so well, and we commit to doing so. As one step in this direction, we are commissioning a themed issue focusing on disparities that will be led by Mercedes Carnethon and Karol Watson, both Circulation Associate Editors. In addition, we are fortunate to have recruited Michelle Albert, President of the Association of Black Cardiologists, Circulation Editorial Board member and Associate Editor of ATVB, to serve as Guest Editor.
Perceptions on Diversity in Cardiology: A Survey of Cardiology Fellowship Training Program Directors
Co-authored by Quinn Capers IV (with Anna Lisa Crowley, Julie Damp, Melanie S. Sulistio, Kathryn Berlacher, Donna M. Polk, Robert A. Hong, Gaby Weissman, Dorothy Jackson, Chittur A. Sivaram, James A. Arrighi, et al.)
The lack of diversity in the cardiovascular physician workforce is thought to be an important driver of racial and sex disparities in cardiac care. Cardiology fellowship program directors play a critical role in shaping the cardiology workforce. To assess program directors’ perceptions about diversity and barriers to enhancing diversity, the authors conducted a survey of 513 fellowship program directors or associate directors from 193 unique adult cardiology fellowship training programs. The response rate was 21% of all individuals (110/513) representing 57% of US general adult cardiology training programs (110/193).
Editorial: Responsibility of Medical Journals in Addressing Racism in Health Care
Gbenga Ogedegbe, MD, MPH
Current events surrounding racially motivated police brutality highlight the duty medical journals have in shaping the discourse on the impact of structural racism on health and adademic advancement of Blacks, Latinx and Indigenous people.
Representation of Women Authors in International Heart Failure Guidelines and Contemporary Clinical Trials
Co-authored by Gregg C. Fonarow and Ileana L. Piña (with Nosheen Reza, Ayman Samman Tahhan, Nadim Mahmud, Ersilia M. DeFilippis, Alaaeddin Alrohaibani, Muthiah Vaduganathan, Stephen J. Greene, Annie Hang Ho, et al.)
Gender disparities in authorship of heart failure (HF) guideline citations and clinical trials have not been examined. We identified authors of publications referenced in Class I Recommendations in the United States (n=173) and European (n=100) HF guidelines and of publications of all HF trials with >400 participants (n=118) published between 2001 and 2016. Authors’ genders were determined, and changes in authorship patterns over time were evaluated with linear regression and nonparametric testing.

We LOVE to LEARN how our ABC Members are making a difference! Please Share. Giving a keynote speech? Presenting at a Grand Round? Receiving an Award? Interviewed by the Press? Published in a journal? Presenter or Panelist at a Conference? Graduating? Email Rachel Williams at or please tag or DM us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram with links/details, so we can spotlight your excellence in our newsletter!


Congratulations to Dr. Yele Aluko, Chief Medical Officer of Ernst & Young LLP, for being named one of the recipients of Fierce Healthcare's 2020 Most Influential Minority Executives in Healthcare.


HHS Provider Relief Fund Phase 2 General Distribution
Now Accepting Additional Applicants

On July 31, 2020, HHS announced that certain Medicare providers would be given another opportunity to receive additional Provider Relief Fund payments. These are providers who previously missed the June 3, 2020 deadline to apply for additional funding equal to 2 percent of their total patient care revenue from the $20 billion portion of the $50 billion Phase 1 General Distribution, including many Medicaid, Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP), and dental providers with low Medicare revenues. In addition, certain providers who experienced a change in ownership, making them previously ineligible for Phase 1 funding, will also be given an opportunity to apply for financial relief. Eligible providers may now submit their application exit disclaimer icon for possible funds by August 28, 2020.


Deadline Extended to September 4, 2020
Dr. Richard Allen Williams Scholarship
for Medical Students

(for African Americans and other minority
1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th-year medical students)

The Association of Black Cardiologists, Inc. (ABC) is pleased to announce the Dr. Richard Allen Williams Scholarship for African American and other minority medical students (1st- through 4th-year) who show promise in medical research, cardiology and academic medicine. This scholarship honors Richard Allen Williams, MD, FACC, FAHA, founder of the Association of Black Cardiologists and was created to promote diversity in medicine, encourage commitment to eliminating health care disparities and support future cardiologists while helping to alleviate medical student debt. $5,000 scholarships will be awarded to recipients in honor of Dr. Richard Allen Williams. Winners will be announced by September 25, 2020.

Questions: Katrese Phelps McCullum at

Deadline to submit: September 4, 2020


ACC 2021 Distinguished Awards Program
Help us recognize your peers

Those who drive the transformation of cardiovascular care lead by example in their actions at work and in life. These outstanding individuals come from a diversity of thought, experience and perspective and our teachers, mentors, and colleagues.

Each year, the ACC acknowledges these standout individuals with the Distinguished Awards, honoring them for their service in teaching, mentorship, innovation, science, and lifetime achievements. Help us recognize your peers by nominating them for an award that speaks to their accomplishments in the cardiovascular community.

The 2021 Distinguished Award winners will be formally recognized at the 70th Annual Convocation Ceremony at ACC.21. Visit to learn more about the different awards the ACC offers. Nominations are due September 23, 2020.


Florida A&M Student Conducting Research
on ACES/Trauma and Black Women's Heart Disease Risk
Requests Your Support

Windy Cunningham, a Florida A&M University Public Health doctoral student, is conducting a community research project, entitled Our Heart Study, on the impact of stress on Black Women’s health. Ms. Cunningham is seeking help with the virtual recruitment of 400 Black women in the Stroke Belt. Women who identify as Black and live in North Carolina, Georgia, Alabama and North Florida are eligible to complete the online questionnaire. This is an unfunded study so participants will not be paid; however, they can enter into a raffle to win one of two $50 gift cards. Please help bring awareness of and participation in the Our Heart Study by doing any or all of the following:
  • If eligible, review the information and take the Our Heart Study online questionnaire and let others know that you did;
  • Encourage Black women to review the study information on the Our Heart Study site and if they agree, complete the online questionnaire;
  • Forward the flyer and information letter to your friends, family and colleagues;
  • Visit the study website and share it with others
  • Like the Our Heart Study Facebook page
  • Share the study information on your social media pages explaining that the online questionnaire is important, confidential and simple to complete

Job Opening | Non- Invasive Cardiologist | Mount Vernon/Alexandria, VA

The Inova Heart and Vascular Institute is seeking a board-certified/eligible Non-Invasive Cardiologist for our Mount Vernon/Alexandria location. Inova Cardiology comprises an elite team of board-certified cardiologists providing the highest level of comprehensive care to help patients achieve heart and vascular wellness.

Our world-class physicians provide quality and experienced care using the most advanced diagnostic procedures and treatments. Inova Cardiology physicians create customized care plans for each patient’s unique needs to deliver highly personalized care to help patients achieve improved heart and overall health.

The non-invasive cardiologist will support our Mount Vernon and Alexandria Hospital locations.

Inova Alexandria Hospital: Our heart specialists use advanced technologies to provide cardiac patients with services that include evaluation, diagnosis, treatment, education, and rehabilitation. Our diagnostic and treatment capabilities include cardiac catheterization, electrophysiology, and cardiovascular magnetic resonance.

Inova Mount Vernon Hospital: Offers an array of interventional radiology and other cardiac services including cardiac stress tests.

Inova is a not-for-profit healthcare system based in Northern Virginia that serves more than 2 million people each year from throughout the Washington, DC, metro area, and beyond. Inova is a comprehensive network of hospitals, outpatient services and facilities, primary and specialty care practices, and health and wellness initiatives.

  • MD from an accredited university medical school.

  • Board eligible or board-certified in cardiology.

  • Credentialed in echocardiography and nuclear cardiology with skills in interpreting carotid and peripheral vascular non-invasive studies.

  • Current Virginia state medical license and DEA preferred.

  • Ability to achieve full and unrestricted hospital privileges at Mount Vernon and Alexandria Inova hospitals.
This is a full-time position with competitive compensation and benefits, including medical, dental, vision and life insurance, as well as defined contribution retirement plans.

Interested applicants should email or send CV to:


The Office of Minority Health (OMH) and the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health announced the Reducing Cardiac Arrest Disparities Through Data Registries Initiative. This initiative supports demonstration projects to show whether participation in an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA) registry using standard data collection tools and data infrastructure supports the: (1) identification of racial and ethnic minority and/or disadvantaged populations experiencing cardiac arrest; and (2) implementation of evidence-informed interventions to improve cardiac arrest survival rates. If your organization has questions about applying for the OMH new funding opportunity to improve cardiac survival rates in racial and ethnic minorities? View a technical assistance webinar on the OMH YouTube channel.


AHA: Aortic Stenosis and COVID FAQ

The American Heart Association(AHA) released an FAQ document on Heart Valve Disease and COVID-19, called “Aortic Stenosis & COVID-19: What You Need to Know.” The document provides guidance to patients with aortic stenosis on how to manage their disease during the pandemic as well as information about the higher risk for complications if a patient gets COVID-19.


Share These New Public Service
Announcements from Million Hearts®

At least one in five expected emergency department visits for heart attack or stroke did not occur during the initial months of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to the CDC. CDC Million Hearts and CDC Foundation have worked with key partners to produce two, CDC-approved short (30-second), animated public service announcements (PSAs) to spotlight the importance of heart health during COVID-19 and to encourage individuals to seek emergency care for heart attacks or strokes. Please use, disseminate, and post these two PSAs to help promote and protect heart health during and beyond the COVID-19 pandemic. Click the following to access the “Emergency Care for Heart Disease During COVID-19” PSA and the “Maintaining Heart Health During COVID-19” PSA.

Additionally, download a Partner Activation Toolkit as a PDF for sample social media posts, digital communications copy and messaging to support dissemination.

Upcoming Events

Removing the Barriers: It’s Time for a Check Up from the Neck Up
Thursday, September 10, 2020 at 12 PM EST

AFA’s free workshop is an opportunity to improve the care of people living with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias and cognitive impairments. This Continuing Medical Education (CME) program aims to address the challenges faced by primary care physicians and provide additional education on the importance of brain health, early detection of cognitive conditions, and how to use that knowledge to create a more defined care plan. Drs. Keith C. Ferdinand and Rachel M. Bond will give presentations.


The Office of Minority Health (OMH) at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) will host a virtual symposium, Advancing the Response to COVID-19: Sharing Promising Programs and Practices for Racial and Ethnic Minority Communities, on Thursday, September 17, 2020 at 12:00 pm ET to highlight local, state, tribal, and territorial responses to COVID-19 in racial and ethnic minority communities.


The virtual ABC-ASNC Joint session, “Diversity and Inclusion in Clinical Nuclear Cardiology - A Case-Based Ethics Session” is scheduled for September 25, 2020, 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM EST. The session will be moderated by Ola Akinboboye, MD, FASNC and includes presentations and panel discussion from Kevin M. Alexander, MD, Brian C. Clark, MD, Anne L. Taylor, MD, Kim A. Williams Sr., MD, MASNC, and Renee Bullock-Palmer, MD, FASNC. ASNC2020: A NEW Virtual Meeting and Exhibition has been changed from an in-person gathering into a 12-month virtual experience (beginning September 9, 2020). The main program will take place virtually on September 25 and 26.


The 2020 PCORI Virtual Annual Meeting - Accelerating Impact on Care and Patient-Centered Outcomes - will be held on September 16 and 17. Dr. Lisa Cooper and Liz Salmi will be the keynote speakers. PCORI Executive Director Dr. Nakela Cook will open the free 2-day event. The meeting’s agenda will include plenary and breakout sessions, featuring such topics as Health and healthcare disparities and inequities, Maternal health, Child and adolescent health, Disabilities and Telehealth.

The meeting’s agenda will include plenary and breakout sessions, featuring such topics as Health and healthcare disparities and inequities, AS WELL AS Maternal health, Child and adolescent health, Disabilities and Telehealth.


The 11th Annual Spirit of the Heart
Virtual Awards Gala & Fundraiser

The Association of Black Cardiologists, Inc. Cordially Invites You, Your Family, Friends and Colleagues To Attend The 11th Annual Spirit of the Heart Virtual Awards Gala & Fundraiser on Saturday, October, 17, 2020 at 7:00 PM EST / 4:00 PM PST.

For questions about the awards gala, or to inquire about sponsorship opportunities, e-mail – (800) 753-9222, OR contact at MGPG Events, Inc. - (312) 454-6100.

2nd Annual Women's Heart and Vascular Symposium
From Prevention to Intervention
Saturday, November 21, 2020

A review of the most current evidence-based guidelines for the prevention of heart disease in women with a focus on the management of diseases as catered to the unique pathophysiology of women, will provide medical practitioners with a clear understanding of the best practice to ensure women are not just treated as “little men”. This full day virtual symposium is for all healthcare clinicians caring for women today and will focus on the continuum of care from prevention to early diagnosis and treatment strategies for heart disease in women. Rachel M Bond, MD, is the Course Director. Keynote Speaker will be Roxana Mehran, MD and faculty members include Keith C. Ferdinand, MD, Elizabeth Ofili, MD, MPH, and Sheila Sahni, MD.


Amazon has proudly partnered with the Association of Black Cardiologists (ABC) through its AmazonSmile program. If you select ABC as your designated charity while shopping on, the AmazonSmile Foundation donates a portion of every purchase to ABC.

When you shop at, you'll support ABC too!

Click here to support ABC through your purchases on Amazon or AmazonPrime!

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