The cardiologist Valentín Fuster currently combines roles as General Director of the Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Cardiovasculares Carlos III (CNIC) in Madrid and Director of the Cardiovascular Institute and Physician-in-Chief at the Mount Sinai Medical Center, New York.
Dr. Fuster, who is also Editor in Chief of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, is a world-renowned figure whose vision of health promotion was lauded at the latest World Cardiology Congress as the route map toward ending the unsustainable pandemic of cardiovascular disease. This worldwide reputation led last September to Dr. Fuster being named co-director of the production committee behind the report on “Global Health and the Future Role of the United States”. This report details the challenges and priorities that lie ahead in health care and identifies 14 goals and priority areas for the United States government and other stakeholders.
The innumerable positions Dr. Fuster has held include those of President of the American Heart Association, President of the World Heart Federation, member of the Institute of Medicine of the US National Academy of Sciences (where he chairs the committee for the prevention of the global epidemic in heart disease), member of the US National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, and President of the American College of Cardiology Training Program.
After qualifying in medicine at the University of Barcelona, Valentín Fuster continued his studies in the USA. He was professor in Medicine and Cardiovascular Diseases at the Mayo Medical School, Minnesota and at the Medical School of Mount Sinai Hospital, New York, and from 1991 to 1994 was full professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School in Boston. In 1994 he was named director of the Cardiovascular Institute at Mount Sinai, a post he has combined since 2012 with that of Physician-in-Chief
Dr. Fuster has been named Doctor Honoris Causa by thirty-four universities and has received three of the most important awards from the US National Institutes of Health. He is an author on more than 900 scientific articles in international medical journals, and has published two leading books on clinical cardiology and research: The Heart and Atherothrombosis and Coronary Artery Disease. He has also been named Editor-in-chief of the prestigious journal Nature Reviews in Cardiology. His contributions to cardiovascular medicine have had an enormous impact on the treatment of patients with heart disease. His research into the origin of cardiovascular events, which has contributed to improved treatment of heart attack patients, was recognized in 1996 by the award of the Prince of Asturias Award for Technical and Scientific Research. More recently, he was awarded the title of Marqués (2014) by the King of Spain for his “outstanding and constant efforts in cardiovascular research and his commendable teaching work.”
Among his many achievements, Dr. Fuster is the only cardiologist to have received the highest research awards from the four leading international cardiology organizations: the American Heart Association, the American College of Cardiology, the European Society of Cardiology, and the Interamerican Society of Cardiology.
In 2008, Dr. Fuster received the Kurt Polzer prize from the European Academy of Sciences and Arts. In 2009 he received the prestigious international Arrigo Recordati prize for his contribution to advances in the area of cardiovascular imaging. In June 2011 he was awarded the Grand Prix Scientifique of the Institute de France, considered the most important award in cardiology, for his translational research into atherothrombotic disease. Other accolades include the Gold Heart Award, the Lewis A. Conner Memorial Award and the James B. Eric Achievement Award from the American Heart Association, the Distinguished Service Award and the Distinguished Teacher Award from the American College of Cardiology, the Gold Medals of the American and European Cardiology Societies, and the highest award for Medicine from Erasmus University (Rotterdam).
In 2012 Dr. Fuster was named by the American College of Cardiology as one of the Living Legends in Cardiovascular Medicine, and was awarded the Research Achievement Award, the highest award given by the American Heart Association. Dr. Fuster was also recently awarded the Ron Haddock International Impact Award by the American Heart Association and the American Stroke Association in recognition of his global leadership. Further recognition in Spain came in the form of the Severo Ochoa Prize for Biomedical Research and the Mapfre Foundation Lifetime Achievement Award. According to the evaluation committee, Dr. Fuster’s career stands as a model of the kind of research and innovation in which Spain needs to excel in order to compete in the global economy. This year Dr. Fuster has been appointed President of the Spanish National Health Committee. In November 2017, Dr. Fuster was awarded the Grand Cross of the Order of Alfonso X the Wise.
In addition to his dedication to research, Dr. Fuster is strongly committed to his responsibility to communicate to the public. This commitment has in the last three years produced six books, which have been very positively received and topped the sales lists. This vocation and the clear need to promote healthy lifestyle habits recently led to Dr. Fuster launching the Science, Health and Education Foundation (Fundación SHE - “la Caixa”), with the goal of improving public health, especially among young people.