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Willerson Receives Top Honor for Cardiology in Mexico
UT Health Science Center at Houston President awarded prestigious Chavez Medallion
The National University of Mexico awarded its top honor for Cardiology, the Ignacio Chavez Medallion, to James T. Willerson, M.D., president of The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, in a ceremony in Mexico City. The award, named after a prestigious cardiologist from Mexico, is given to those who have shown excellence in research and education in the field of cardiology. The award's namesake was the founder of the Mexican National Institute of Cardiology in 1944 and was named lifetime honorary chairman of the International Society of Cardiology, among other accomplishments in the academic and clinical arenas.
"We have not had the honor to have a recipient of the profound caliber as Dr. Willerson's accomplishments in research - as an esteemed professor, a leader of the prestigious University of Texas Health Science Center in Houston and medical director of world recognized authority in the field of cardiovascular medicine at the Texas Heart Institute," said Angel Gonzalez Camano, M.D., president of the Mexican Society of Heart Failure and vice rector, Research for the Mexican National Institute of Cardiology.
"Dr. Willerson's leadership at the helm of the premier journal for cardiology, Circulation, and the enhancements he made to the journal while maintaining an active medical practice is admirable and sets the standard for physicians involved in this field and for future award recipients."
After receiving the awards from the university, Dr. Willerson presented on the latest advances in detection of vulnerable plaque to more than 300 cardiologist from Mexico.
"I am honored to receive this award named after a true pioneer in the field of medicine. With his academic, educational and social accomplishments, Dr. Ignacio Chavez set the standard in which to strive," said Willerson, president-elect of the Texas Heart Institute.
"I have always enjoyed the close collaboration among peers and physicians from Mexico and Texas, especially the educational collaboration and exchange with many from Mexico and the Texas Heart Institute," he said.
He added that he looks forward to strengthening the bridges between Texas and Mexico and is working toward the day in which his cardiology research efforts can have a permanent location in Mexico to serve both Mexico and Latin America.
"The revolution in medicine is now. With developments in genetics and molecular research, all involved in this field are poised to make a dramatic impact in eradicating potential cardiovascular disease. The opportunity for a collaborative effort in that regard is now. I want to have the leaders in this field in Mexico as partners and will dedicate myself to seeing that achieved so all can benefit from such research," he said.