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News Releases

For Immediate Release

Children’s Doctor Honored With Prestigious Award From President of the Republic of Colombia for International Contributions to Pediatric Cardiac Care

Colombia’s Minister of Social Protection, Diego Palacio Betancourt, presented Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC’s Heart Center Chief of the Division of Cardiac Intensive Care  Ricardo A. Muñoz, MD, FAAP, FCCM, with the prestigious Jorge Bejarano Civic Cross Medal.

During a visit to the Fundacion Valle de Lili last month, Dr. Muñozwas given the award, which is signed by Colombian President Alvaro Uribe Velez, in honor of his outstanding achievements and contributions to the medical field and pediatric cardiac intensive care, acknowledging his contribution to promoting health care in Colombia.

The award is given to honor people who make exceptional contributions in the field of medicine, public health and public welfare. The award is named after Jorge Bejarano, MD, who specialized in pediatrics and hygiene, and was appointed First Minister of Hygiene of Colombia from 1946–1949. Dr. Bejarano was a member of several respected medical societies, including The Colombian National Academy of Medicine, The Venezuelan Academy of Pediatrics, The New York Academy of Medicine, and the North American Academy of Medicine.

Dr. Muñoz, who also is the director of the Cardiac Recovery Program and associate professor of Pediatrics, Critical Care Medicine and Surgery at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, has been instrumental in working with doctors in Colombia to expand their pediatric capabilities.  

“I was humbled and honored to be given such a prestigious award. It was a very moving and memorable day for me,” said Dr. Muñoz. “We are dedicated to helping the medical team in Colombia evolve their pediatric heart program so they can most effectively care for their young patients.”

At Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC, heart defects are successfully repaired in children only a few months old. Under Dr. Muñoz’sleadership, Children’s Cardiac Intensive Care Unit (CICU) provides the level of post-surgical medical care young cardiac patients need for optimum outcomes.

In addition to his work in Colombia, Dr. Muñoz was the premier editor of the first cardiac intensive care book in Spanish. In collaboration with physicians in Spain, Switzerland and Bogotá, Colombia, Dr. Muñoz was instrumental in creating the book,Cuidados Críticos enCardiopatías Congénitas o Adquiridas.  Dr. Munoz also is the main editor of a recently published book of pediatric cardiovascular drugs.

Dr. Muñoz trained in pediatric critical care and pediatric cardiology at Massachusetts General Hospital and Children’s Hospital Boston/Harvard Medical School. A fellow in the American Academy of Pediatrics and member and fellow of the Society of Critical Care Medicine. In addition, Dr Munoz is a member and counselor of Cardiac Intensive Care of the European Association of Pediatric Cardiology.

Download a photo of Dr. Muñoz.

Learn more about Dr. Muñoz.

Learn more about Children’s CICU or Heart Center.

Learn more about Dr. Muñoz’s book.


Marc Lukasiak, 412-692-7919 or 412-692-5016,
Melanie Finnigan, 412-692-5502 or 412-692-5016,

Last Update
May 29, 2008
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Last Update
May 29, 2008