Nick Spath – Heart Rhythm Society

Start date: 9th May 2018

End date: 12th May 2018

Location: Boston

Travel reports

I have been very fortunate to have been granted funds from the Emily Taylor Travel Grant this May, enabling me to attend a large international conference in Boston; Heart Rhythm Society 2018. The conference attracts EP specialists worldwide, and with over 12,000 delegates, provided an amazing platform to present our analysis on outcomes in RV pacing within NHS Lothian.

In brief, we undertook a large retrospective analysis of long-term clinical outcomes following pacemaker insertion, stratified according to RV lead insertion site. The analysis provides valuable data to the literature, where there is still lack of consensus. The sessions were extremely well attended and there was a great deal of interactive and engaged discussion around my presented work, and it was both interesting and useful to gain feedback and thoughts of others from different centres, on this common clinical question. There is no doubt that it has informed my write-up and improved the quality of the manuscript immeasurably.

The conference also provided an excellent opportunity to meet and re-kindly relationships with EP professionals from other departments in which I have worked. Opportunities to see these people are infrequent but important in maintaining links between our institutions.

I am extremely grateful to have been granted funds for the second time within my PhD. It has enabled attendance at highly educational meetings which would have been otherwise impossible.

Stacey Stewart – Royal College of Nursing and Midwifery International Nursing Research Conference

Date: 18th April 2018

Location: Birmingham

Travel reports

I am very grateful to the Scottish Cardiac Society for the Emily Taylor Travel Award. This enabled me to attend the 2018 Royal College of Nursing and Midwifery International Nursing Research Conference in Birmingham, where I presented my poster on patient recruitment into research within an acute cardiology setting. The conference was attended by research nurses and nurse researchers from a range of different specialties and institutions. Despite being from different specialties, many people had experienced similar challenges when recruiting patients to clinical trials. My poster stimulated some great discussion with other research teams around different recruitment strategies and I received many valuable comments. I was able to take back some of these suggestions to the team, which may be beneficial for our future research studies.

It was a very informative conference with many networking opportunities. I was able to hear about nursing research developments and speak to many experienced researchers about the different methodologies they had used. This will be beneficial to me in my future career as I hope to undertake my own cardiology research project. Furthermore, it was highly valuable speaking to research teams who have undertaken patient and public involvement work, as our team were in the process of developing a patient advisory group. Since this conference we have had our first patient and public involvement meeting with our patient advisory panel, which was a great success.

Fiona Shearer – Philips Cardiac CT Course

Start date: 6th February 2018

End date: 10th February 2018

Location: London

Travel reports

I am extremely grateful to the Scottish Cardiac Society for agreeing to support my travel to the Philips Cardiac CT course in London, from the 6th to the 10th of February 2018. This was an intensive, non profit, course which covered all aspects of cardiac CT. This included lectures, reporting cases and watching live CT acquisition. The Faculty were all level 3 accredited, highly experienced CT consultants and the technical support from Philips was exceptional. This course allowed me to gain level 2 accreditation in cardiac CT; this would have taken several months to do without a course. It was also extremely useful as cardiac CT is not available in my local hospital so I would have had to travel to other NHS trusts to gain day to day training.

I would like to thank the society again for supporting me. Without their support I would not have been able to attend this course.

Many thanks

Dr Fiona Shearer

Sowmya Venkatasubramanian – EHRA EUOPACE

Start date: 18th June 2017

End date: 21st June 2017

Travel reports

I am very grateful to the Scottish Cardiac Society for supporting my travel to the EHRA EUOPACE-CARDIOSTIM 2017 congress held in Vienna between the 18th and 21st June 2017.  As a final year trainee in cardiac devices, this was an excellent forum highlighting the latest and the best in the field of implantable cardiac devices.

I attended some excellent sessions by world-renowned speakers in the field of cardiac devices. Of particular interest to me were sessions on alternative site ventricular pacing – an area of that bears great potential and is definitely creating a lot of interest amongst electrophysiologists and device experts around the globe. The congress also had very interesting sessions on real world experience on the latest technology in the field of devices – such as subcutaneous ICDs and the leadless pacemaker technology. It was also very educational to watch experts describe their ‘nightmare cases’ of cardiac resynchronisation therapy implants in the cath lab and how they tackled them. Live demo sessions were a great resource to observe and learn new techniques/ equipment available that would be of great value in difficult CRT implants. In addition to all of this, the congress provided a great platform for networking with peers and colleagues.

This travel fund also allowed me to take the extremely challenging EHRA (European Heart Rhythm Association) accreditation exam in cardiac devices that was held on the first day of the congress meeting. I am very pleased to inform the Society that I have successfully passed this exam providing me with Level 1 accreditation in cardiac devices. Finally, I thoroughly enjoyed Vienna and it’s awesome weather!

I thank the Society for their on-going support and hope that I can translate the knowledge gained at this conference into clinical practice.

Agha Haider Imran – EuroPCR 2017

Start date: 16th May 2017

End date: 19th May 2017

Location: Paris, France

Travel reports

I am profoundly grateful to Scottish Cardiac Society to support me to attend and present at EuroPCR 2017.

EuroPCR is the official annual meeting of the European Association of Percutaneous Cardiovascular Interventions (EAPCI) and the world-leading Course in Interventional Cardiovascular Medicine.

Nearly 11,800 interventional cardiologists, nurses, technicians, scientists and industry innovators from around the world shared the latest developments, research, and best practice in treating cardiovascular conditions, including coronary and valvular heart disease and stroke, with minimally invasive endovascular techniques.

EuroPCR celebrated 40 years of angioplasty this year with an exhibition tracing the major milestones in the pioneering history of interventional cardiology. The first EAPCI fellows course was held in conjunction with EuroPCR with interactive lectures from leaders in the field. Stent-Save a life programme was launched during this conference, which involved meeting of representatives from more than 60 countries to discuss the improvement in access to latest therapies and reduction in mortality and morbidity in patients with STEMI.

I was able to preset my case report during a session on technical aspects of complex left main PCI. The session was well attended by the consultants and registrars from all over the world. I had also been able to attend many simulator sessions to gain new skills in interventional cardiology.

I was able to share my experience with colleagues from all across the world and the live sessions during the conference were a great resource to observe international practice in interventional cardiology and interact with the panel of interventionists and attendees. The sessions on complications during PCI were very useful to learn about management of complicated cases.

The Emily Taylor grant helped me to attend the conference, share knowledge and experience with professionals from around the world and learn new skills in interventional cardiology. I am hopeful that my knowledge and skills will be used for improvement of many lives of patients with cardiac problems in general and ischemic heart disease in particular.

Dr Agha Haider Imran
SPR Cardiology

Catherine Mondoa – International Forum on Quality & Safety in Healthcare

Start date: 27th April 2017

End date: 28th April 2017

Location: London

Travel reports

I am extremely grateful to have received support from the Scottish Cardiac Society for travel to the International Forum on Quality & Safety in Healthcare. This international conference was hosted in London and attracts health care workers from around the world. The forum encourages the sharing of ideas and innovations relating to quality and patient safety.

Keynote speakers included Sir Ranulph Fiennes and Chris Hadfield (Astronaut, Commander Space Station). They shared inspirational insights and experiences. Inspiration and resilience was viewed as vital to their successes and the sessions were delivered with health care professionals/settings in mind.

As well as leadership initiatives the forum highlighted patient-focused clinical care and co-design. Several of the sessions were patient led and included patient innovators. Thought-provoking work relevant to 21st century health care.

In addition the educational aspect the event is a great opportunity to talk to other like minded professionals and on this occasion to display a poster highlighting the improvement work we have been doing in Forth Valley.

The Emily Taylor travel award gave me the opportunity to attend this excellent conference and to share the work we have done with regard to Improving the care of families with Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.

Michael Freeman – Foundation Echocardiography Course

Start date: 5th April 2017

End date: 7th April 2017

Location: Stoke

Travel reports

I am extremely grateful to receive support from the Scottish Cardiac Society for travel to the ‘Midlands-echo,’ Foundation Echocardiography course in Stoke. This is a three day echo course that is pitched at the level of a complete beginner and is promoted by the British Society of Echocardiography. Faculty include cardiology consultants, registrars and senior sonographers. The course was attended by approximately 30 delegates, who ranged from F2 to ST3, but generally all were interested in a career in cardiology. Over the three days the course was run, there are a number of lectures and hands-on echocardiography sessions in small groups. There was the opportunity to scan subjects with normal anatomy as well as those with common heart / valve abnormalities.  There were no assessments or exams and so the course felt relaxed and it was a supportive environment. Overall I found this course to be highly useful and it has given me a great deal more confidence with the basics of echocardiography.  I hope to use this foundation to begin working towards the accreditation examination of the British Society of Echocardiography. The Emily Taylor travel award gave me the opportunity to attend this excellent course, which will be useful for many years to come.

Dr Michael Freeman
CMT Lothian

Andrew Chapman – ACC Washington 2017

Start date: 17th March 2017

End date: 19th March 2017

Location: Washington DC, USA

Travel reports

was awarded the Scottish Cardiac Society Autumn Meeting prize after a presentation given in 2016. This award provided funding which I used to attend the American College of Cardiology Congress in Washington DC in March 2017. During this meeting I presented research from my ongoing PhD into the optimal use of cardiac troponin to risk stratify patients with suspected acute coronary syndrome. We also used this meeting as a platform to launch our new clinical app’, detailing the chest pain pathway we developed as part of an ongoing trial of high-sensitivity cardiac troponin implementation across Central Scotland ( Conferences such as ACC provide a unique opportunity for networking, and I was fortunate to meet with other interested research groups in the field.

I am very grateful for the ongoing support of the Scottish Cardiac Society which enabled me to attend this Congress.

Dr Andrew Chapman

BHF Clinical Research Fellow, Cardiology

University of Edinburgh

Dennis Sandeman – ACC Washington 2017

Start date: 17th March 2017

End date: 19th March 2017

Location: Washington DC, USA

Travel reports

The SCS travel grant allowed me to attend the American College of Cardiology meeting in Washington in March 2017. I presented a poster detailing my research study “Is it safe to use high-sensitivity cardiac troponin T to rule out myocardial infarction at presentation?”

I studied 2577 consecutive patients admitted with suspected ACS who had serial troponin samples taken. 636 patients had an initial concentration <5ng/L at presentation. Only 5 of these patients went on to have a significant rise in their peak sample. 4 out of the 5 patients presented <3 hours of presentation. I was able to demonstrate a negative predictive value of 99.2% for myocardial injury if initial concentration is <5ng/L on presentation thus identifying 25% of patients who may suitable for immediate discharge.

The timing of the meeting was important; the same high-sensitive cardiac troponin T assay used in my study (Roche) has just been approved for use in USA. This is the only high-sensitivity assay to be approved for clinical use in USA so there was some interest in my study. This was a fantastic opportunity to share my work and meet colleagues with an interest in this area. I have had several clinicians contact me since the ACC meeting to enquire about my study and there is a potential collaboration on my next study with a renowned group from Minneapolis who have published widely in the area of cardiac markers.

The conference was informative and enjoyable. I would not have been able to attend if I had not been given this support from SCS.

Many thanks


Dennis Sandeman

Cardiology Nurse Consultant

NHS Fife

Tania Pawade – Heart Valve Society & ESC

Start date: 2nd March 2017

End date: 4th March 2017

Location: Monaco

Travel reports

Heart Valve Society                           Monaco 2017
European Society of Cardiology       Barcelona 2017

I am extremely grateful to the Scottish Cardiac Society for assisting my attendance at both the Heart Valve Society and the European Society of Cardiology.

I had the valuable opportunity of presenting my ongoing research on calcification imaging in aortic stenosis at both of these meetings. In particular I demonstrated that computed tomography calcium scoring of the aortic valve could be employed as an independent arbitrator of disease severity in patients with discordant echocardiographic measurements. These talks were well received and I was able discuss the future directions  of this work with experts in the field. As a consequence, I am now extremely motivated and inspired to further develop upon these findings.

Both conferences were also extremely educational and enjoyable. The sessions on valvular heart disease and heart failure were of particular interest and I have since been able to apply the teachings to improve my clinical practice.

Dr Tania Pawade
Cardiology Registrar, South East Scotland Deanery