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Letter by Roberto Ferrari

European Heart for Children

The European Society of Cardiology is the largest cardiological society in the world. We have more than 65,000 members and we represent 53 national cardiological societies located in Europe and around the Mediterranean. Our main aim is to reduce the burden of cardiovascular disease in Europe.

Obviously the differences in how cardiology is practised in all these countries are many. This is certainly one of the strengths, but also a weakness of our Society, and the ESC is doing its utmost to coordinate and harmonize treatment of cardiovascular disease across our member societies. This, however, has proven particularly difficult for specific areas of cardiology such as congenital heart disease.

Access to appropriate care is not the same for many children born with congenital malformation and, in some cases, the range of disparity is enormous and should not be tolerated any longer.

This is the reason why, as suggested by my wife, and together with many other partners of the ESC Board members, the ESC has decided to start, during my Presidency, an humanitarian initiative aimed to reduce such a diversity throughout the years.

The initiative will be run entirely by our partners and of course will have our  enthusiastic support.

I would like to thank my wife and all the partners of the Board members for spotting a clear need that I did not realize before. I am sure that European Heart for Children will be a success, with your support and that of the European Heart House staff, and if in a few years time we will be able to contribute to the establishment of a congenital heart disease unit in a country in transition, that day I will be very happy and honoured to have contributed to this initiative.

    Roberto Ferrari