“The biggest challenge now in cardiology is making women aware of the risks of heart attack and stroke. We've created awareness with men; now we need to do the same for women.”
Karen McCarthy (former Representative)
“LEADING ADVOCATE FOR WOMEN'S CARDIAC HEALTH”
As a crusader for women's cardiovascular health, Tracy Stevens, M.D. is a leader in national programs to raise awareness of the risks of heart disease and heart attacks in women. It's a position and a challenge she relishes and one that she came to in a circuitous manner.
As a physical therapist in Kansas City, MO from 1984-1986, she worked with heart attack and stroke victims. "I feel in love with cardiology," she recalled. "I worked in cardiac rehabilitation, and I saw so many people who could have done more to prevent their heart problems. That's when I decided to study medicine and become a cardiologist."
As a cardiologist, Tracy Stevens is dedicated to preventing seemingly healthy women from suffering heart attacks. She is an advocate for women's heart health and has spearheaded programs that emphasize primary prevention. She helped lead the Heart Truth Campaign, an effort by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute to educate women about heart disease.
The Heart Truth Campaign brought First Lady Laura Bush to Kansas City in 2003 to help promote awareness of heart disease in women. The First Lady and Tracy Stevens hosted a community education program, and later Dr. Stevens accepted an invitation to the White House to attend the signing of a proclamation by President Bush in support of the Heart Truth Campaign.
To help find a solution to the increasing number of women who have unexpected heart attacks, Tracy Stevens started the Women's Hearts: Ischemic Screening with Proactive Evaluation and Recommendations (WHISPER) study in 2002. The goal of the study is to find ways to prevent the progression of coronary artery disease in women thorough early detection and risk modification.
In addition to preventive cardiology, Tracy Stevens is a leader in heart transplantation. "Every heart transplant is a wonderful story," she said. "You see the patient improve and enjoy a better life, and you realize you've had an impact."
Nominated as a Local Legend by former Rep. Karen McCarthy (D-MO-5), Stevens, M.D. is the Medical Director of the Women's Cardiac Center at Saint Luke's Mid America Heart Institute where she also serves as the Medical Director of Cardiac Transplantation. She is a member of the National Cardiac Transplant Research Database Executive Committee.
She completed a Cardiology Fellowship at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN (1993-1997) where she was also the National Institutes of Health Cardiovascular Research Fellow. She is currently a cardiologist with Cardiovascular Consultants, P.C. and a Clinical Associate Professor at the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Medicine.
She served as President of the American Heart Association, Greater Kansas City Division and is the recipient of the Mayo Clinic Outstanding Achievement Award in Cardiovascular Disease as well as the Mayo Clinic Alumni Association Donald C. Balfour Award for Meritorious Research.
"I love to work with people," she declares. "My family is my greatest achievement, but after that, I'm honored that I can help motivate women toward better cardiac health, and save lives."
Completed Cardiology Fellowship at Mayo Clinic (where she was also the National Institutes of Health Cardiovascular Research Fellow) Rochester, MN
Joins Cardiovascular Consultants, P.C., Kansas City, MO
Appointed Medical Director, Women's Cardiac Center (1999), and Medical Director, Cardiac Transplantation (2003), Saint Luke's Mid America Heart Institute, Kansas City, MO.
Elected President, American Heart Association, Greater Kansas City Division (Board of Directors, 2000-Present)
Appointed Councilor, Missouri Chapter of the American College of Cardiology
Founding Member, Association of Women's Heart Programs
University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Medicine Advanced Standing Program, Kansas City, MO
Prevention and Heart Failure/Transplantation