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PITTSBURGH, PA - March 7, 2012 - Steven A. Webber, MBChB, MRCP, chief of the Division of Pediatric Cardiology at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC, has been awarded the Peter and Ada Rossin Endowed Chair in Pediatric Cardiology.
The Peter and Ada Rossin Endowed Chair in Pediatric Cardiology is a jointly recognized academic chair within the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and Children’s Hospital. The Rossin Foundation focuses its funding on health care and education and is committed to supporting organizations that enhance the lives of people in western Pennsylvania.
Dr. Webber is co-director of the Heart Institute, medical director of Pediatric Heart and Heart-Lung Transplantation at Children’s, and is a professor of pediatrics and clinical and translational science at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine.
“Dr. Webber’s leadership has helped transform the Heart Institute at Children’s Hospital into one of the preeminent centers in the world for the diagnosis and treatment of patients with congenital heart disease, as well as a leading institution in the education of future pediatric cardiologists,” said David H. Perlmutter, M.D., physician-in-chief and scientific director at Children’s and the Vira I. Heinz Professor and Chair of the Department of Pediatrics, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. “This endowed chair speaks to his talents and experience as a clinician, educator and researcher.”
The Heart Institute at Children’s Hospital, led by Dr. Webber and Victor Morell, M.D., is comprised of a team of more than 170 professionals who provide a continuum of care for patients with congenital heart disease from fetal diagnosis through adulthood (through its Adult Congenital Heart Disease Center). More than 15,000 patients are cared for annually through the Institute’s 15 locations and more than 30,000 diagnostic tests, 750 cardiac catheterizations and 500 surgical cases are performed.
Dr. Webber’s research focuses on strategies to improve outcomes for children with advanced heart failure, including those who have received heart transplants. He leads a team of researchers performing innovative multi-institutional clinical research to improve the outcomes of pediatric heart transplant recipients who struggle with infections, tumors and organ rejection. His work has been supported by more than $15 million in research grants from the National Institutes of Health. Specific areas of research include prevention of malignancies after transplantation, improved immunosuppressive medication regimens, mechanisms of graft rejection and understanding how genetic differences in patients predispose them to different outcomes. One important goal of this research is to help understand racial differences in patient outcomes after transplantation.
Dr. Webber is a founder and past-president of the International Pediatric Transplant Association, which is dedicated to advancing transplantation in children. He also is past-president of the Pediatric Heart Transplant Study, a research consortium of over 30 leading pediatric heart transplant centers in North America. He is a past board member of the International Society of Heart and Lung Transplantation and currently sits on the board of the American Society of Transplantation. Dr. Webber is the editor-elect of the journal Pediatric Transplantation and is the incoming chair of the Thoracic Committee of the United Network for Organ Sharing. He is the co-editor of several textbooks devoted to the field of solid organ transplantation.
For more information about Dr. Webber or the Heart Institute, visit www.chp.edu.
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