From Baptist Health South Florida
3 min. read
Baptist Health Doctors Hospital, located in Coral Gables, has provided high-quality medical care to the community for decades. Starting today, Aug. 1, Doctors Hospital will offer more extensive cardiovascular services including a comprehensive diagnostic hub – all part of expanded services that will be overseen by four cardiovascular physicians affiliated with Miami Cardiac & Vascular Institute, also part of Baptist Health.
Doctors Hospital is widely recognized as the home to the Miami HEAT Sports Medicine Center at Baptist Health Orthopedic Institute, which includes the Institute’s wide range of orthopedic specialties, including an ambulatory surgery center on the top floor. But Coral Gables residents and professional athletes alike require cardiovascular care.
For years, cardiologist Percy Aitken, M.D., has anchored the hospital’s cardiac care, often referring patients to Baptist Hospital or South Miami Hospital, also part of Baptist Health, for more extensive treatment or diagnostics. He has also sent many heart patients to Miami Cardiac & Vascular Institute’s Diagnostic Center, home to the most advanced imaging technology. With the expansion of cardiac care at Doctors Hospital, many of those patients may not have to leave Coral Gables for extended testing or treatment.
With the expanded cardiovascular program at Doctors Hospital, Dr. Aitken will be joined by Eli Friedman, M.D., medical director of sports cardiology at Miami Cardiac & Vascular Institute, which is spearheading programs to help diagnose or treat cardiovascular conditions in athletes across South Florida, and help train the athletes and their coaches in proper CPR techniques. Also joining the team are Tarak Rambhatla, M.D., a cardiologist and the director of inpatient cardiac services at Baptist Health’s Miami Cardiac & Vascular Institute; and Adedapo Iluyomade, M.D., preventive cardiologist at the Institute.
“Now, I’ve always had the idea of having a bigger presence here at Doctors Hospital,” explains Dr. Aitken. “There’s been many advances in cardiovascular medicine at our big hub at Miami Cardiac & Vascular Institute (Baptist Hospital). But there’s a growing need here because patients have lots of questions. They have lots of needs and we can refer them, we can orient them, and we can guide them. We can be like their quarterback on cardiovascular care. With expanded services and the addition of three physicians, we will provide a wider range of services to more patients.”
With Doctors Hospital home to Baptist Health Orthopedic Care, the expanded presence there of Dr. Friedman is an ideal advancement, he adds.
“The sports orthopedics program takes care of many high school and college athletes – and professional and semi-professional players,” said Dr. Aitken. “These athletes may have an electrocardiogram that is read as abnormal by the computer, and they want a cardiologist to check it out. So, now we’ll have a go-to physician for them on a more extensive basis.”
That “go-to physician” is Dr. Friedman, who is pioneering the field of sports at both the local and national levels, and continues to fine-tune the diagnosis and treatment of cardiovascular conditions in athletes of all types and all ages.
“The sports medicine world is already centered at Doctors Hospital, from the Baptist Health Orthopedic Care standpoint. And we want to support those goals and those initiatives there,” explains Dr. Friedman. “We’re growing our diagnostic presence at Doctors Hospital and we’re going to be doing a lot of cardiopulmonary exercise testing there. This will benefit our multidisciplinary, subspecialty cardiology groups as well. There is much opportunity to collaborate that way.”
But Dr. Friedman adds that his sport cardiology specialty is not just focused on professional and amateur athletes, but on the very active and athletic residents within close proximity to Doctors Hospital. He regular sees residents from Coral Gables at the Miami Cardiac & Vascular Institute at the Baptist Hospital campus.
“I know there’s a community there around Doctors Hospital that needs what we can provide,” adds Dr. Friedman. “And when I say ‘we,’ I’m not just talking sports. I’m talking general cardiology as well. Doctors Hospital is a niche hospital, but now we’re able to bring really advanced cardiac patients in there, and perform the type of quality diagnostic testing there as we do at Baptist Hospital.”
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