Okyanos Heart Institute Names Dr. Howard Walpole as Chief Medical Officer

Coronary Artery Disease Treatment Center Announces Prominent Cardiologist to Serve as Lead Physician

Raleigh, NC, March 11, 2012 --(PR.com)-- Okyanos Heart Institute (http://www.okyanos.com/), which brings a new option, standard of care and quality of life to patients with coronary artery disease (CAD), has announced that Howard T. Walpole Jr., M.D., MBA, FACC, FACAI, will serve as the organization’s Chief Medical Officer and Interventional Cardiologist. Walpole is a prominent cardiologist in the United States who in his 25 years of practice as a patient-centric physician has completed approximately 5,000 catheter-based interventions and 12,000 diagnostic catheterizations, as well as myocardial biopsies.

Previously, Walpole served as the Chief of Cardiac Sciences at St. Thomas Hospital in Nashville, Tenn., a medical center with 3,300 employees and a service population of approximately 2 million across three states. He led the strategy and operations of the Cardiac Sciences division, which included 37 cardiologists, five cardiac surgeons and nine cardiac anesthesiologists. Prior to that, Walpole was the managing partner of The Heart Group, PLLC, where he directed an operating budget of more than $20 million and led the growth strategy which expanded the practice from seven cardiologists to 37 and developed 15 new clinic locations in middle Tennessee and southern Kentucky.

A longtime member of the American Heart Association, Walpole served two terms as the president of the Davidson County, Tennessee Chapter from 1996-1997 and 2009-2010. Besides his present duties on the board of trustees through 2017, his participation in the American College of Cardiology includes working on the board of governors chair-elect nominating committee, co-chairing the “Evolving Models of Clinical Practice” from 2009-2010 and chairing the “Cardiovascular Care Summit” for 2012. Walpole received his Bachelor of Science from the University of Georgia, his M.D. from the Medical College of Georgia and his MBA from the Goizueta School of Business at Emory University in Georgia.

“I am honored to serve Okyanos Heart Institute as it launches bringing a new standard of care and a better quality of life to patients with severe heart disease where bypass and stents are no longer viable treatment options,” said Walpole. “Our medical practices combined with innovative research offer promising advances in cardiac care. I look forward to letting more people know about the advances in medicine that Okyanos has planned for the future.”

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- In his leadership at Saint Thomas Hospital, Walpole drove successes in various areas of cardiac care, including developing the Therapeutic Hypothermia protocol of St. Thomas Hospital and its 14 hospital member Chest Pain Network, as well as instituting documentation for physicians that improved the severity of illness index by 6.3 percent and lowered the risk of mortality index by 12.5 percent.

- He also developed the Cardiac Sciences Leadership group at St. Thomas Hospital to coordinate operations across inpatient and outpatient cardiac services and taught EKG interpretation classes for the emergency department staff.

About Okyanos Heart Institute:
Based in Freeport, The Bahamas, the Okyanos Heart Institute is a Center of Excellence (CoE) adhering to U.S. surgical center standards and led by Chief Medical Officer Dr. Howard (Bo) Walpole, a leader of the American College of Cardiology for many years. The Okyanos Heart Institute brings a new option, standard of care and quality of life to patients with coronary artery disease (CAD), utilizing an EU-approved cell therapy device. The Greek god of rivers, “Okyanos” symbolizes the primary mechanism of action that these adult stem cells have on ischemic (lack of blood flow) heart tissue, the result of the plaque deposits in the coronary arteries. The cells, derived from a person’s adipose (fat) tissue, create new blood vessels, a process known as angiogenesis. The cells facilitate blood flow in the heart and intake and use of oxygen, as measured by a rigorous clinical trial known as the PRECISE trial, as well as cardiac cell-therapy trials at leading research institutions including Texas Heart Institute, and University of Miami. For more information, visit http://www.okyanos.com/.

Anjelica Cummings
MMI Public Relations
(919) 233-6600

Okyanos Heart Institute
Patty Briguglio