The Heartbeat International foundation and Biotronik have opened a new heart centre in the Dominican capital of Santo Domingo. At the centre, volunteer physicians at the Heart Center will implant donated pacemakers and defibrillators for patients who normally would not be able to afford the cost of these devices.
As well as providing the cardiac devices that the Santo Domingo Heart Center needs, Biotronik will cover the initial costs of setting up the centre, through a Christmas donation to which the company’s Berlin-based employees also contributed.
The Dominican Centre’s opening comes alongside news that Heartbeat Internnational is on track to save 500 lives by the end of 2015, with the help of both its local heart centre volunteers and devices donated by Biotronik. More than a third of this total comes from a new record set by the foundation’s heart centre in St Augustine (Trinidad and Tobago), which recently marked its 200th implantation so far this year—exceeding the 173 lifesaving implantations performed there in 2014.
Michael Maniscalco, chief compliance officer of Heartbeat International, says: “With approximately 500 lives saved in 2015, this year was one of the most successful we have had since we were founded in 1984. And with the dedicated work of our local heart centre volunteers and Biotronik’s continued continued support, we’re looking forward to helping many more patients in 2016 and beyond.”