NUHCS Women's Heart Health team with Dr. Rekha Mankad, Director, Women's Heart Clinic, the Mayo Clinic; and her team.
To push the envelope for women's heart health, National University Heart Centre, Singapore (NUHCS) provides a programme dedicated to women with and at risk of heart disease. In 2018, the team had an opportunity to go for clinical attachment programmes in North America.
Travelling to the Land of Opportunity
Our Women's Heart Health team received the FY2018 Health Manpower Development Programme (HMDP) Team Award and went for the clinical attachment programmes at the University of Ottawa Heart Institute (UOHI), Canada and the Mayo Clinic, Minnesota, US. Our multidisciplinary team includes Ms. Lim Lee Ying, physiotherapist; Ms Janice Chen Dehui, Senior Occupational Therapist; Ms. Lee Choy Yee, Advanced Practice Nurse, Ms. Seow Yen Hoon, Programme Coordinator and myself.
After multiple stops on long distance flights, our team arrived at Ottawa and discovered that the Ottawa-Gatineau region was just hit by six tornadoes over the past 24 hours. Fortunately for us, water and electricity were resumed before we reached our hotels. Despite the weather, Dr. Thais Coutinho, Chair, Canadian Women's Heart Health Centre and Division Head, Cardiac Prevention and Rehabilitation, and her team from the Women's Heart Health and Preventive Cardiology, UOHI, warmly welcomed us. We met her team of nurse clinicians, physiotherapists, dietitians and programme coordinators for a round table discussion and sharing of the Women's Heart Health Programme (WHHP) services at UOHI.
UOHI and NUHCS Women's Heart Heath teams together with Dr. Thais Coutinho, Chair, UOHI's WHHP (far right, back row).
A Multidisciplinary Sharing Experience
Throughout the week of attachement at UOHI, our team was introduced to the different components and services of the WHHP. The team at UOHI made every effort to maximise our exposure as they arranged for us to attend their women's heart health clinics, cardiac health coaching sessions and cardiac rehabilitation sessions. They shared with us their community outreach programmes including the cardiac virtual care, cardiac volunteers education and community cardiac rehabilitation programmes.
Following that, we visited the Mayo Clinic. Our team was privileged to have a programme tailored to our needs. The team at the Mayo Clinic shared with us their clinical expertise and experience in the WHHP, the cardiac diseases in pregnancy, programme and their cardiac rehabilitation programmes. We also had the opportunity to attend the Heart Disease in Women's Symposium organised by the WHHP at the Mayo Clinic.
An Insightful journey
Our team learnt and benefited greatly from our clinical exposure at both heart institutes. We deeply appreciate their kindness and generosity in sharing with us their experiences and providing us with advice and tips in our journey ahead to develop a more wholesome programme. We hope to be able to contribute to the healthcare of our women with heart diseases.
By Asst. Prof. Chan Wan Xian