I have done my Masters in Cardiopulmonary Physiotherapy and have worked in a Government Physiotherapy College in Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India for more than 30 years.
At present I am heading the physiotherapy department at U N Mehta Institute of Cardiology and Research Centre, Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India, which is one of the largest cardiology centres in the world. We are extensively involved in a lot of Phase I CR (inpatient CR) in both Adult and Pediatric patients and are currently in the process of starting Phase II CR at our institute.
I am passionate about CR and want to do the best for all in need!
Jolie Britt, MD
Clinical Postdoctoral Fellow - Pediatric Cardiology
Dr. Jolie Britt completed medical school at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas. After medical school, Dr. Britt completed her residency in Pediatrics at Texas Children's Hospital/Baylor College of Medicine where she also served as Chief Resident. She completed her categorical Pediatric Cardiology fellowship and Advanced Imaging Fellowship at Texas Children's Hospital/Baylor College of Medicine where she also served as Chief Fellow. She has also used her advanced fellowship to attain additional expertise in exercise physiology. Dr. Britt has recently joined the Texas Children's Hospital Heart Center as an Assistant Professor in Advanced Imaging. She has joined the team tasked with initiating cardiac fitness program called the TCH LAUNCH Program. Her passions include using echocardiography, MRI, and exercise testing to risk stratify and assist patients with congenital heart disease in living a healthy and active lifestyle. She also enjoys medical education and will be participating in the Master Teachers Fellowship Program with Baylor College of Medicine starting in the Fall of 2021.
Yonatan Buber, MD
Associate Professor, Division of Cardiology
Dr. Buber is a graduate of the Ben-Gurion University School of Medicine in Israel. He obtained his Residency and Cardiology Fellowship training at the Sheba Medical Center in Ramat-Gan, Israel, followed by an Adult Congenital Heart Disease and Pulmonary Hypertension fellowship at Boston Children’s Hospital and Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston. He also completed an advanced interventional training program in Congenital Heart Diseases at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus.
Dr. Buber now serves as an Associate Professor at the Division of Cardiology in the University of Washington Medical Center in Seattle, Washington. He is the Associate Program Director of the Adult Congenital Heart Disease service, the Co-founder and Co-director of the Cardio-Obstetrics Service, and the attending Cardiologist at the Cardio-Pulmonary Exercise Testing lab.
Dr. Buber has authored numerous original research papers, review papers and book chapters on various topics in Congenital Heart Disease, including several manuscripts focusing on exercise physiology.
Maria Ina Bunyi, MD
Ina is a Pediatric Cardiologist at the Philippine Heart Center. She completed her Pediatric Residency at the Philippine Children’s Medical Center. Burdened by the limited number of Cardiology Specialists and the growing burden of Heart Disease in Children, she pursued a Pediatric Cardiology Fellowship at the Philippine Heart Center. Inspired by the results of the institution’s Adult Cardiac Rehab Program and armed with the support of other disciplines, she spearheaded the establishment of PediaCaRe (Pediatric Cardiac Rehabilitation Section) and continues to serve as its Program Coordinator since its inception in 2001. Her desire is to make an impact in patient care that goes beyond medical or surgical intervention through preventive cardiology advocacies, such as the promotion of physical activity, the prevention of Rheumatic Fever /RHD and by fostering collaborations of health providers.
Barbara Cifra, MD
Director, Exercise Medicine Program
Barbara Cifra is a sport medicine physician who completed her training in Rome before moving to Toronto. As a trainee, she worked in the Medical and Surgical Paediatric Cardiology Unit at Bambino Gesu’ Children Hospital in Rome studying how the different types of physical activity impact heart function in children with acquired and congenital heart disease. While in Italy she also had the unique opportunity to work with the first league soccer team in Rome (AS Roma) and the Italian National Rowing team. Elite athletes represent an exceptional research model for understanding how the cardiovascular system remodels when exposed to intense exercise.
In Toronto she first worked as a research fellow in the Echocardiography Laboratory in the Labatt Family Heart Centre where she developed the Exercise Stress Echocardiography Program. She is now the Director of the Exercise Medicine Program that focus on healthy lifestyle plan and exercise prescription for children with heart disease.
Tracy Curran, PhD
Cardiac Exercise Program Development Manager
Tracy Curran is the co-developer and program development manager of the Heart Center's Cardiac Fitness Program at Boston Children's Hospital. She has over 20 years’ experience in clinical exercise testing in the congenital and acquired heart disease population. In addition, she has over 15 years’ experience educating allied health students, professionals, health care providers, patients, and families on the importance of exercise testing and training. Her research focus is on the positive impact that exercise training and mindfulness practices have on the health and wellness of children with and without disease.
Michael Fremed, MD
Assistant Professor of Pediatrics
Mike Fremed is a pediatric cardiologist at Columbia University, where he completed both his general pediatrics residency and pediatric cardiology fellowship training. In addition to general outpatient cardiology, he also specializes in acute care and exercise cardiology. His particular interests include the use of cardiopulmonary fitness programs to improve outcomes in children and young adults with acquired and congenital heart disease, cardiac implications of COVID-19, and medical education. Along with Dr. Aimee Layton, he is currently developing and studying the feasibility and impact of a telehealth based-cardiopulmonary fitness and rehabilitation program at Columbia.
In 2017 I graduated from the Second Faculty of Medicine of Charles University in Prague, Czech Republic with a masters degree in physiotherapy.
I work as a paediatric physiotherapist at the Rehabilitation and Sports Medicine Department at the University Hospital Motol in Prague.
My main focus is physiotherapeutic care and rehabilitation of children with congenital heart disease. Together with my colleagues we take care of a wide range of patients with CHD and collaborate closely with pediatric cardiologists from the Children's Heart Center Motol.
Sisira Gorthala, MD, MSc
PGY-3 Resident, Department of Medicine, Stony Brook University
Sisira is a third-year resident in Internal Medicine at Stony Brook University. She completed her MD at SUNY Upstate in Syracuse, MSc in Global Health at Duke University, and BS in Biomedical Engineering at Yale University. She connected with Dr. Gauthier while laying groundwork for a mobile health research initiative to promote exercise in ACHD in India. She led a collaboration among Departments of Cardiology and Computer Science at Stony Brook and leaders in pediatric cardiology in India including Public Health Foundation of India, Center for Digital Health, Amrita Institute of Medical Sciences, and others. She has conducted global/public health and engineering research, both in the laboratory and the field. Relevant experiences have been in areas like cardiac biomechanics, telemedicine, and chatbot/machine learning. Leadership positions include serving on the Committee to the Provost at Yale University and on the Global Health Council at Duke University. At Stony Brook, she has been teaching global health courses and guest lecturing to undergraduate, graduate, and medical students.
Katherine Hansen, MD
Pediatric Cardiology Fellow, Stanford University
Woong-Han Kim, MD, PhD
Director, JW LEE Center for Global Medicine, Seoul National University. Chairman, The Korean Society for Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery
Dr. Woong-Han Kim is a thoracic and cardiovascular surgery professor at Seoul National University College of Medicine, as well as the chairman of the Korean Society for Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery. He is also the director of Seoul National University's JW LEE Center for Global Medicine, which focuses on global health research, education, and social contribution and operates with a devotion to the international community in accordance with the late Dr. Jong-wook Lee's (1945-2006) motto, "Do What You Think Is Right." He is also an active member of the National Academy of Medicine of Korea. His areas of interest in research include global health, global surgery, appropriate technology, health systems research, and implementation research.
Gi-Beom Kim, MD, PhD
Pediatric Cardiology - Department of Pediatrics
Dr. Gi-Beom Kim is a professor of the Department of Pediatrics at the Seoul National University Children’s Hospital and the Seoul National University College of Medicine. He received an M.D. and Ph.D. at Seoul National University. His main clinical interests are catheter intervention for congenital heart disease including percutaneous pulmonary valve implantation, cardiomyopathy, Kawasaki disease, adult congenital heart disease and pulmonary hypertension. His main research interests are technical improvement of trans-catheter intervention for diverse structural heart disease, cardiomyopathy and investigation for pathogenesis of Kawasaki disease through Kawasaki disease epidemiology.
Research Associate - JW LEE Center for Global Medicine
So-Jeong Kim is currently a research associate at the JW LEE Center for Global Medicine at Seoul National University, Korea. She received a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in Food and Nutrition at Seoul National University. Her interests focus on inequalities in the global burden of malnutrition, nutrition education for school-aged children, maternal and child health, community nutrition education, and clinical nutrition in patients undergoing rehabilitation.
Jae Gun Kwak, MD, PhD
Congenital Cardiac Surgeon, Pediatric Cardiac Surgeon
Dr. Jae Gun Kwak is a surgeon for congenital heart diseases at Seoul National University Children’s Hospital, Seoul, Korea (South). He has performed more than 2,000 cases of congenital cardiac operations after obtaining his medical license, and has always been interested in cardiac fitness and rehabilitation programs for patients with congenital heart diseases in the peri-operative period. He is now trying to establish and develop such programs in Seoul, South Korea with his colleagues in his hospital and school (Seoul National University, College of Medicine). He believes that the improved quality of life with these kinds of programs is as important as successful surgical or medical treatments for congenital heart disease patients. He also expects that these programs will boost better clinical outcomes after operations.
Naomi Gauthier, MD
Director, Cardiac Fitness Program
Naomi is a pediatric cardiologist at Boston Children's Hospital and serves as the Director of the Cardiac Fitness Program. Beyond her love for patient care, her interests are in strengthening collaborations, studying patient outcomes, exercise physiology, and physical activity promotion.
Nicole has been working at BCH for 2.5 years as a clinical exercise physiologist. She obtained her B.S. in Kinesiology; Exercise Physiology from the University of New Hampshire. Nicole completed an internship in the exercise lab at Boston Children’s in 2017. After completing her internship, Nicole worked at Brigham and Women’s hospital doing research in Pulmonary before being hired at BCH in 2018. Nicole is passionate about and enjoys both exercise stress testing and pediatric cardiac rehabilitation.
Jared Holland, MBA
Patient Services Manager
Jared manages the Cardiology, Cardiac Diagnostics and CT Surgery departments for the Criss Heart Center at Omaha Children’s Hospital. Jared received his Bachelor’s Degree and Masters in Business from Bellevue University in Omaha, Nebraska. Omaha Children’s Hospital started their Pediatric Cardiac Rehab and Fitness program in early 2020. He looks forward to growing the program and working with his colleagues from the Global Coalition for Fitness and CHD to improve patient care and their experience in the program.
Stuart Holzer, MD, FAAP, FACC
Director of Pediatric Cardiology Non-Invasive Testing
Dr. Holzer is a Pediatric Cardiologist at Stony Brook Children’s. He received his B.S. from Duke University and his M.D. from Stony Brook School of Medicine. He completed his pediatric residency and cardiology fellowship training at Columbia University Medical Center. In his role as the Director of Pediatric Cardiology Non-Invasive Testing at Stony Brook Children’s, he coordinates pediatric exercise stress testing and heart-rhythm monitoring. Dr. Holzer specializes in general pediatric cardiology, sports cardiology and exercise physiology.
Jennifer Huang, MD
Jen is a pediatric cardiologist at Doernbecher Children’s Hospital at Oregon Health and Science University and serves as the Co-Director of the Exercise Physiology and Cardiac Rehabilitation programs. She has a passion for increasing physical activity in children with heart disease with a goal that they lead full and healthy lives. She believes the heart of pediatric cardiology is ensuring that children with heart disease are confident and have the least limitations to what they can do.
Sandy Knecht, MS, RCEP
Cardiopulmonary Exercise Lab Supervisor
Ms. Sandy Knecht is a master’s prepared Clinical Exercise Physiologist with 20+ years’ experience in cardiopulmonary exercise testing in pediatric and adult congenital heart disease patients. She is currently the Cardiopulmonary Exercise Lab Supervisor at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. Sandy holds the American College of Sports Medicine ACSM -CEP certification and the RCEP distinction. Sandy is active in several professional organizations and is currently serving on the Midwest ACSM (MWACSM) board of directors as the co-chair of the clinical committee and Clinical Exercise Physiology Association (CEPA) registry committee. Previously, she has held positions as the Member-At-Large with both MWACSM and CEPA. Sandy has ongoing involvement in research projects and publications and our lab’s educational and internship programs.
Aimee Layton, PhD
Director, Pediatric Cardiopulmonary Exercise Lab
Aimee Layton is the Pediatric Cardiopulmonary Exercise Laboratory Director and Assistant Professor in Applied Physiology in Pediatrics, Pediatrics Cardiology at Columbia University. Prior to recently joining Pediatric Cardiology, she was faculty in adult Pulmonary Medicine and adjunct faculty of the Department of Rehabilitation Medicine at Columbia. Aimee’s research interests include: exercise ventilatory responses and mechanics, tele-medicine, pulmonary rehabilitation and predicting mortality using exercise outcomes. Beyond her work, Aimee is a Category 1 competitive cyclist and races road, mountain biking and cycle cross in the NY/NJ area. She is also on the health advisory committee for Peloton, a public company that specializes in home fitness.
Woo Hyung Lee, MD, PhD
Dr. Woo Hyung Lee is a physiatrist and researcher specializing in pediatric neurorehabilitation. He received a PhD degree in the Department of Biomedical Engineering. As a junior member of the faculty, he has been an assistant professor in the Department of Rehabilitation Medicine at Seoul National University Hospital and Seoul National University Children's Hospital since 2020. He is now focusing on developing pediatric cardiac rehabilitation programs at Seoul National University Children's Hospital.
Rachel is a full-time Exercise Physiologist at Boston Children Hospital with prior experience in adult clinical exercise testing. She received her Bachelor’s Degree from Sacred Heart University in 2013 and went on to obtain her Master’s Degree In Exercise Physiology from Eastern Illinois University in 2015. Her clinical testing experience has given her a strong understanding of the physiological adaptations to exercise which she uses when training patients in our Cardia Fitness Program. She aims to improve quality of life through providing exercise guidance, support and education.
Manager, Cardiopulmonary Labs
Melissa received her Master of Science in Clinical Exercise Physiology from Eastern Illinois University in 2002 and has been certified through the American College of Sports Medicine as an Exercise Physiologist since 2003. Her clinical experience is focused within the specialty areas of pediatric cardiology and pediatric pulmonary medicine. As a part of the Lurie children’s physiology team, Melissa has developed and implemented multiple exercise physiology specialty programs which include preventive exercise physiology and pediatric inpatient and outpatient cardiopulmonary rehabilitation. Prior experience involves exercise prescription for healthy populations, geriatric exercise programming, adult diagnostic testing and adult cardiopulmonary rehabilitation. Melissa’s current career path is on the administrative side of the field as a manager for the cardiopulmonary labs at Lurie Children’s Hospital.
Yael Melamud, PhD
Yael is the manager of the Cardiac Rehabilitation Centre at Hadassah Hospital in Jerusalem, Israel. Yael has completed her BEd in Physical Education at Wingate College (Israel), her MSc in Exercise Physiology at SDSD (San Diego, California) and her PHD in Exercise Sciences from Bangor University (Wales, England). Yael has been working as an exercise physiologist in cardiac rehabilitation programs since 2005. Additionally, she has been teaching and qualifying exercise trainers, exercise physiologists, physical therapists, nurses, and physicians to educate cardiac patients through appropriate physical activity and a healthy life style. Today, as the manager of a new cardiac rehabilitation center, she wishes to develop and implement the first program in Israel for patients with congenital heart diseases.
Lynda Meyers, RN
Asst Exercise Physiologist/Cardiac Fitness Program Administrator
Allison has been working in the Cardiology Department at Boston Children’s Hospital since 2016. Allison is currently an Assistant Exercise Physiologist and is also the administrator for the Cardiac Fitness Program. She received her undergraduate degree in Exercise Science from the University at Buffalo, where she concurrently completed an internship in adult cardiac rehabilitation. Allison has also been a Certified Cardiographic Technician (CCT) since 2018.
Jung Eun Oh, DDS
Research Associate – JW LEE Center for Global Medicine
Jung Eun Oh is a research associate at the JW LEE Center for Global Medicine at Seoul National University in South Korea. She received a B.A. in Political Science and International Relations and continued her studies to pursue a DDS. Beyond her passion for dentistry and global health, her interests focus on ensuring and improving quality of life through a multidisciplinary approach particularly to those most vulnerable in a society.
Inger Olson, MD
Director, Pediatric Exercise Lab
Inger Olson is a pediatric cardiologist at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford. She is the director of the pediatric exercise lab, and is currently leading an effort to develop a pediatric cardiac fitness program at Stanford. She is also an attending in the echo lab and is working on gaining expertise in stress echo, with the goal of providing a full range of services related to exercise health and testing for children.
William Orr, MD, FACC
Director, Exercise Physiology Lab and Cardiopulmonary Exercise Testing
Dr. Orr is a pediatric cardiologist at Washington University in St. Louis Mo. He is the director of the pediatric cardiology exercise physiology lab and cardiopulmonary exercise testing. He is actively leading and developing efforts to create a pediatric cardiac fitness program at St. Louis Children’s Hospital. His current research is centered around exercise physiology and the value of exercise testing among the pediatric population as well as introducing new technology into exercise testing.
Tam Dan (Tina) Pham, MD
Dr. Tam Dan (Tina) Pham is a Pediatric Cardiologist at Texas Children’s Hospital, and is a member of the Arrhythmia and Pacing service. She completed medical school at The University of Texas Medical Branch, and her Pediatric Residency at Medical University of South Carolina. From there, she completed her Cardiology Fellowship and senior fellowship in Electrophysiology at Boston Children’s Hospital.
Dr. Pham specializes in management of cardiac arrhythmias, and management of patients with pacemakers and defibrillators. She has a special interest in exercise physiology and utilizing cardiopulmonary exercise stress testing as a tool to assess a patient’s functional capacity. She is the creator of the Exercise Stress Test Committee at Texas Children’s Hospital. Dr. Pham has joined a multidisciplinary team tasked to create a cardiac fitness program, called TCH LAUNCH (Learning And Understanding New Cardiac Habits). Her passion is to promote cardiac fitness to improve the quality of life of those restricted by underlying heart disease.
Caleb Ross, MS
Caleb Ross is an exercise physiologist at Children's Hospital and Medical Center in Omaha, Nebraska. Caleb received his bachelor's degree in Sports and Exercise Science from Peru State College, and then his master's degree in Exercise Physiology at the University of Nebraska at Omaha. His graduate research focused on environmental exercise physiology and was able to publish his thesis in 2017. After graduating, he was hired on at Children's Hospital's Cardiopulmonary Exercise Lab where he conducted all exercise testing. His passion for exercise science and the overall wellbeing of his patients brought the motivation to start a pediatric cardiac rehab program. With the help of his colleagues, their first cardiac rehab patient graduated in 2020. Caleb looks forward to growing the program and contributing as a member of the Global Coalition for Fitness and CHD!
Randal Thomas, MD, MS
Director, Cardiac Rehabilitation Program
Dr. Thomas is medical director for the cardiac rehabilitation program at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, helping to provide cardiac rehabilitation care for patients of all ages. Dr. Thomas is past president of the American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation (AACVPR), and past chair of the American Heart Association Council on Clinical Cardiology. His research interests cover the benefits of cardiac rehabilitation as well as the exploration of methods to improve the utilization of cardiac rehabilitation.
David A. White, PhD, CEP
Exercise Physiologist, Assistant Professor
Dave is an exercise physiologist and researcher in the Pediatric Physical Activity and Cardiac Exercise Science Program in the Ward Family Heart Center at Children’s Mercy Kansas City and assistant professor at the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Medicine. His primary research focus is exercise physiology, exercise intervention, physical activity assessment and counseling, and frailty in children and adolescents with congenital and acquired heart disease. Other research and clinical focuses include preventive cardiology and metabolic/bariatric surgery in adolescents with severe obesity.
Dave is also the Technology Working Group Lead for GloCo. Please reach out to Dave if interested in participating in this working group.
Samuel Wittekind, MD, MSci, ACC
Assistant Professor - Cardiomyopathy, Heart Failure & Transplant
I am a pediatric cardiologist at Cincinnati Children’s who specializes in the care of young patients with heart failure from any number of causes including congenital heart disease, inherited cardiomyopathy and acquired heart disease. I work on an advanced heart failure team that provides individualized treatment for these vulnerable patients. I went into medicine because I enjoy solving diagnostic puzzles, exploring new therapies and helping people achieve their potential through better health. I enjoy working with children and young adults because of their physical and mental resilience. In my practice, I use evidence-based care that is truly patient centered. My aim is to help patients and families identify their health-related goals and make plans to achieve those goals. In addition to caring for patients, I’m involved in research. I am interested in cardiopulmonary fitness as a modifiable risk factor for morbidity and mortality in pediatric heart disease and other chronic conditions, including cancer. I am studying how exercise training can improve outcomes that are important to both patients and the healthcare system. When I'm not taking care of patients or conducting research, I enjoy spending time playing with my family and friends. I'm also an avid fly fisherman.