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Atlantic Health System’s Morristown Medical Center Offers First in the U.S. Fellowship for Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (HCM) and Sports Cardiology

April 11, 2022

Led by renowned cardiologist Dr. Matthew Martinez

April 11, 2022, Morristown, New Jersey – Atlantic Health System’s Morristown Medical Center (MMC) announced today that it is offering the first fellowship in the United States for hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) and sports cardiology. The program will be led by Matthew Martinez, MD, FACC, Medical Director of Sports Cardiology at Atlantic Health System and Co-Director, Chanin T. Mast Center for HCM at MMC.

HCM is the most common hereditary heart disease that results in the walls of the heart becoming excessively thick causing blood flow obstruction. Symptoms often overlap other medical complaints which can delay diagnosis and complicate treatment. HCM afflicts one in 500 people worldwide yet estimates indicate only 15 percent of those patients are diagnosed, leaving 85 percent undiagnosed. HCM is the most common structural heart disease in athletes with sudden cardiac arrest. Dr Martinez is part of many national and international efforts to increase education and care for those with HCM and athletes with risk for cardiac arrest. Specific training focused on HCM and care of athletes will continue that mission.

In the last decade there is an increased focus on care of HCM and athletes with an increased demand for cardiologists who are specially trained to assess, diagnose, and manage HCM and athletes. Over the last few years, it has become evident that the quality and consistency of HCM diagnoses vary considerably. The primary goal of the HCM and Sports Cardiology fellowship is to help improve the diagnosis and care for these patients.

“There is no better way to gain expertise in a complex problem than to fully immerse yourself in it for a year, and learn all you can about it,” said Dr. Martinez. “The first of its kind fellowship leverages the expertise we have here at Atlantic Health System from our nationally recognized cardiac surgical, interventional cardiology and advanced cardiac imaging programs that are paramount for HCM and athlete care.”

More about Dr. Martinez
Dr. Martinez regularly presents on sports cardiology and HCM on the national and international stage and had previously served as the American College of Cardiology Chair of Sports and Exercise. Dr. Martinez has expertise in advanced cardiac imaging using echo, cardiac MRI and CT, and has led many educational events nationally and internationally on these topics. He has also served as the educational program chairman for the International Athletic Heart Symposium on management of athletes with cardiovascular risk. Dr. Martinez serves as a cardiology consultant for elite and professional athletes including acting as the league cardiologist for Major League Soccer, team cardiologist for the New York Jets, and cardiac consultant for the NFL.

As a national leader in the research and treatment of cardiac disease, Gagnon Cardiovascular Institute at Morristown Medical Center presently offers cardiovascular disease and interventional fellowship programs designed to train fellows to provide compassionate, patient-centered and evidence-based care in a state-of-the-art referral center.

About Heart Care
Morristown Medical Center, the hub of heart care at Atlantic Health System, is one of the top 45 programs in the country for Cardiology & Heart Surgery (U.S. News & World Report) and one of America’s 100 Best Hospitals for Cardiac Care (Healthgrades). Its expert team presents research across the world and is comprised of interventional cardiologists, electrophysiologists, heart failure experts, advanced imagers and cardiac surgeons.

The program also offers specialty care in hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, sports cardiology, cardio-oncology, pediatric cardiology, and heart disease in women. The team works closely with community cardiologists who provide a medical home for patients with heart disease.

Atlantic Health System Heart Care is focused on offering minimally invasive and non-invasive procedures that help patients return to their lives faster. The state’s largest valve replacement/repair program offers valve therapy options for the aortic, mitral, and tricuspid valves, and is helping advance the radial (wrist) approach for coronary procedures with a new lounge for post-procedure recovery.

About Atlantic Health System

Atlantic Health System is at the forefront of medicine, setting standards for quality health care in New Jersey, Pennsylvania and the New York metropolitan area. Powered by a workforce of more than 18,000 team members and 4,800 affiliated physicians dedicated to building healthier communities, Atlantic Health System serves more than half of the state of New Jersey including 12 counties and 5.5 million people. The not-for-profit system offers more than 400 sites of care, including its seven hospitals: Morristown Medical Center in Morristown, NJ, Overlook Medical Center in Summit, NJ, Newton Medical Center in Newton, NJ, Chilton Medical Center in Pompton Plains, NJ, Hackettstown Medical Center in Hackettstown, NJ, Goryeb Children’s Hospital in Morristown, NJ, Atlantic Rehabilitation Institute in Madison, NJ and through its partnership with CentraState Healthcare System in Freehold, NJ.

Atlantic Medical Group, comprised of 1,000 physicians and advanced practice providers, represents one of the largest multi-specialty practices in New Jersey and joins Atlantic Accountable Care Organization and Optimus Healthcare Partners as part of Atlantic Alliance, a Clinically Integrated Network of more than 2,500 health care providers throughout northern and central NJ.

Atlantic Health System provides care for the full continuum of health care needs through 23 urgent care centers, Atlantic Visiting Nurse and Atlantic Anywhere Virtual Visits. Facilitating the connection between these services on both land and air is the transportation fleet of Atlantic Mobile Health.

Atlantic Health System leads the Healthcare Transformation Consortium, a partnership of six regional hospitals and health systems dedicated to improving access and affordability and is a founding member of the PIER Consortium – Partners in Innovation, Education, and Research – a streamlined clinical trial system that will expand access to groundbreaking research across five health systems in the region.

Atlantic Health System has a medical school affiliation with Thomas Jefferson University and is home to the regional campus of the Sidney Kimmel Medical College at Morristown and Overlook Medical Centers and is the official health care partner of the New York Jets.