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A group of Saudi Arabian physicians will travel to Dignity Health Chandler Regional Medical Center this month for state-of-the-art cardiac training – in addition to a dose of local hospitality. The visiting physicians, sponsored by the Saudi Arabian Ministry of Health, will be the second group to travel to Chandler from the Middle Eastern country in the past several months.
Chandler Regional is one of only a handful of hospitals in the United States to offer an intensive, hands-on certification course in Cardiac CTA (computed tomography angiography), a technology that provides high-resolution 3-D images of the heart and its vasculature. Led by local cardiologists and CTA experts Roger Bies, MD, and Carter Newton, MD, the course is held a few times a year for cardiologists, radiologists and other healthcare professionals from throughout the nation.
“We offer a truly unique and world-class training center that features renowned instructors, one-on-one interaction with trainees and real life CT scan experience,” says Dr. Bies.
The unique arrangement with the Middle Eastern country began last year when a Saudi Arabian physician with ties to the Valley discovered the course. “While their hospitals have the necessary technology, they don’t have the training opportunities that would allow staff to use the technology to its full potential,” said Staci King, manager of Chandler Regional’s Continuing Medical Education. The Saudi Arabian Ministry of Health sent their first group of 10 physicians to Arizona in June.
In a twist of fate, Staci, Dr. Bies and Dr. Carter had all spent time in Saudi Arabia and were familiar with the cultural customs. They made a concerted effort to make their visitors feel comfortable, from catering in culturally appropriate foods to making connections at a local mosque. Their efforts resulted in an ongoing relationship with the Ministry of Health.
The second group of Saudi Arabians, consisting of 14 physicians and four technicians, will attend a CTA training course at Chandler Regional Sept. 25-29. Participants will fulfill certification and board eligibility requirements while learning from 150 live and archived cases over the five-day course.
“Saudi Arabia’s radiologists are moving quickly ahead with a commitment to provide the absolute latest advances in non invasive cardiac imaging,” said Dr. Newton. “We are proud of our program and hope that this expanded training course will exceed the successes of the program held earlier this summer.”