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PACES Fall Newsletter


Dear PACES members!

It is hard to believe that I am halfway through my term as President of PACES. I think my disbelief at this underscores the challenges we face to make meaningful changes in healthcare delivery in relatively short time-frames. Nonetheless, the PACES Executive committee and subcommittees are determined to continue to advance the PACES vision.

Although I had great hopes of transforming pediatric electrophysiology in my term, my initial efforts focused on seemingly more mundane, but necessary logistical matters around sustaining and enhancing PACES. I keep returning to my focus: engagement. The website was a priority for members and our website committee has done a great job of reorganizing it. We have focused on putting operational details behind the member log-in, and updating our content. Andy Papez and Melissa Olen have led this labor-intensive and vital process. We have been delighted to see some AP members become involved in this process.

In order for the new website structure to work, please ensure you are a bona fide member, with up-to-date profile and dues. In the current era, we are no longer able to manage inactive email accounts, and “word-of-mouth” memberships. Bryan Cannon has done a tremendous job organizing this with FASEB, and a notice for dues has recently gone out.

The PACES Executive is delighted to have signed a first-of-its-kind reciprocal agreement with the Heart Rhythm Society (HRS). HRS and PACES have enjoyed an excellent relationship over the past decades, even before PACES aligned its annual meeting with HRS (then NASPE). The two societies have collaborated on credentialing, education, research, position papers and advocacy. PACES wanted to formalize this important relationship and affirm that our society could serve as the recognized pediatric and congenital partner of HRS. While this agreement will not change much in terms of the existing relationship, it is an important step for the stature of PACES in the field of electrophysiology.

For those of you who are worried about a president not able to focus on issues…below are some updates from our committees and sub-committees.


It is time to pay your dues again for 2017! We appreciate your support to the mission of PACES. In November 2016, our membership roster on our website will be updated to only include active members who have paid their dues. Any members who are not current will be removed. We have many addresses on the website, but some of them are not correct. If you know of someone who has graduated from EP fellowship or moved in the past two years, please forward them this newsletter and have them log on and correct their address. They can also contact me directly at or email our membership organization (FASEB) at or call 301-634-7401 to renew their membership and correct their email so that they can continue to receive PACES information.

Thanks to the Patrick Joyce foundation link to story (and to Peter Aziz for making the contact) for their generous donation to support the mission of PACES (see pictures below). The Patrick Joyce 5K Fun Run was held in August in Cleveland and raised $4250 to support education and research for Long QT syndrome and other pediatric electrophysiology conditions in addition to supporting a scholarship for allied health professionals to attend the HRS annual meeting. If you know of other fundraising opportunities or would like to help us fundraise for future events such as the international PACES/HRS scholarship, please contact me directly.

Bryan Cannon, MD

VP of Finance

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A few weeks ago, we were forced to cancel the PACES Advancing the Field meeting due to the threat of Hurricane Matthew. It was one of the more difficult decisions we’ve made. We knew that you had made travel plans, had cancelled clinic, had rescheduled patients, had cancelled EP lab cases, and took time away from your families- it made the decision to cancel all the more difficult. After the announcement, the responses we received were overwhelmingly supportive. You had every right to be frustrated or angry, but instead you understood the circumstances and supported our decision. Some of you made the trip to Orlando despite the weather reports, committed to this conference! It speaks to the caliber of the membership of PACES- to go through a hurricane and back for you, literally. We cannot thank you enough for your support and encouraging words. We are pleased to announce that PACES Advancing the Field will be held February 20-21st , 2017 in Orlando, Florida (out of hurricane season). Look for more details in the coming weeks and thank you again for your participation and encouragement!

Vince Thomas
Tony McCanta
Bhavya Trivedi

Advancing the Field Co-Directors

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Part of our focus has been to ensure PACES has relevance beyond the 50 states and Canada (not a 51st state!). We are delighted with the work that Mitch Cohen and Thomas Paul and others have been doing on this front. The Asian Pacific meeting in Seoul was a highlight.

The 9th Asia Pacific Heart Rhythm Society was held is Seoul, South Korea October 12-15. The meeting was well attended and a great success. More than 500 faculty were invited. Seoul is a fantastic city. Our hosts were warm and encouraged everyone to be casually dressed for the meeting.

There were multiple streams including Genetics and Paediatrics. For the 3rd Year in a row, one of the Paediatric Sessions was supported by PACES. This year, George Van Hare was one of the chairs of the session, entitled “Sudden Cardiac Death Prevention in Children and CHD Patients”.

Our Asia Pacific Colleagues are amazingly talented and gave excellent presentations as did invited faculty from around the world. Meeting highlights were many for Paediatric Electrophysiologists and included two sessions which featured discussion regarding the nuances of managing long QT syndrome, as well as discussions about pre-excitation induced cardiomyopathy, lead placement for CRT in adult congenital heart disease and indications for ICDs in the various populations we manage.

At the Faculty Dinner, nine Korean Electrophysiologists thrilled their peers by singing an EP themed song, with accompanying slides to the tune of Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody. Their rehearsal can be seen on YouTube:

Everyone is looking forward to the 10th APHRS meeting in Yokohama, Japan September 14-17, 2017!

Andrew Davis

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This year PACES will potentially be awarding two travel grants for pediatric electrophysiologists currently practicing in an underdeveloped country. The award will be for $4,000 to attend the PACES pre-conference and HRS meeting in Chicago (May 2017). This individual should have at least two years of clinical experience and currently be practicing in an underserved or undeveloped country outside of North America. Preference will be given to individuals submitting a scientific abstract for the upcoming sessions as well as a statement of financial need. Letters were sent from Mitchell Cohen and Thomas Paul to known pediatric EP doctors practicing in underdeveloped countries. If you know of any potential applicants that fit the requirements please forward their contact information to either Mitchell or Thomas.

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We are excited to announce new and revised eligibility criteria for the prestigious Paul C. Gillette Award. Early and mid- career physicians and scientists in the first 10 years of their professional career and all allied health professionals at any stage in their career are now eligible to apply for the awardPlease remember the deadline is March 1, 2017. We would also like to give a shout out to following principle investigators for their PACES approved Multi Center Studies.

  • Dr. Lindsey Malloy-Walton: Intravenous Sotalol in Pediatric and Congenital Patients
  • Dr. Seshadri Balaji: Time course of sinus node function recovery in patients with sinus node dysfunction noted immediately after congenital heart surgery
  • Dr. Peter Aziz- Lone atrial fibrillation in pediatric patients – who is at risk for recurrence?Finally, stay tuned for a survey of the PACES membership regarding the feasibility of a shared IRB platform to facilitate multi-center studies.Maully Shah, MBBS
    VP of Research

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PACES has had ongoing collaborative success with joint symposiums at scientific sessions both nationally and internationally.
PACES had its 2nd collaborative meeting session with APHRS in Seoul Korea October 12-15. George Van Hare Andrew Davis, Charlie Berul, and Mark Alexander were all in attendance and by the look of some of the pictures it was an amazing experience. PACES plans to have its third joint session with APHRS September 14-17 in Yokohama, Japan about an hour south of Tokyo by train.
PACES will have its 3rd joint session with AEPC in Lyon, France March 29-April 1. AEPC was actually founded in Lyon in 1963 so this meeting will be bringing the sessions back to its original roots. Thomas Kriebel who serves on the Dysrhythmia Council of AEPC has spearheaded this upcoming collaboration. AEPC spans the domains of cardiology and cardiothoracic surgery much like the AHA and ACC and the sessions often cross disciplines within cardiology.
This summer marks the first PACES entry into having a truly dedicated session at the World Congress in Pediatric Cardiology and Cardiothoracic Surgery. The WCCPCS 2017 meeting (, originally to be held in Istanbul, was relocated to Barcelona (July 16-21) secondary to unfortunate geopolitical issues. World Congress typically has between 3,000-3,500 participants from all over the world. This year’s meeting will have dedicated pediatric EP sessions on four of the five days and joint ACHD and EP sessions on two of the days. Not only is Barcelona an amazing city, the scientific sessions, breakout sessions, and joint sessions across disciplines will be unique and PACES and the EP community will have plenty of visibility. The PACES Executive Committee welcomes you to attend the meeting.
And I snuck in these Canadian meetings (coming soon!)…
HIRO Winnipeg 2017
SADS Toronto 2017
CHRS Halifax 2017

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You will recall I saw a deficiency of structure around our trainees. This included not only resource planning (are we training too many fellows? Too few?) but also involvement in our society. You will recall from our last newsletter, the concept of a journal review by trainees (Pediatric EP Journal Review by Trainees). I am very pleased to present the inaugural PJRT and thanks to Anica Bulic and her team for getting this off the ground. I would like to hear from you about whether this adds value to the PACES web presence.

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The new Education Committee was formed with a mission of organizing PACES-related educational activities and to foster collaboration amongst PACES members in educational endeavors. The committee’s first focus has been to build membership and we are happy to announce that the following people are current members of the committee: Beth Jarosz (Allied Health Representative), Anica Bulic ( Trainee Representative and PJRT Contributor), William Goodyer (Trainee Representative and PJRT Contributor), and Khadijah Maghrabi (Trainee Representative and PJRT Contributor). We are excited to welcome any additional PACES members to join the committee with our work in the following areas: cataloging PACES educational activities including the PACES Pre-HRS symposia and promoting additional PACES-related educational activities such as, “Advancing the Field” as well as contributing to the organization and planning of future educational activities. The Education Committee will be working with the Patient Education Manual Subcommittee in developing information for our patients regarding the diagnoses we treat and the procedures we perform. We also wish to develop readily accessible educational information for categorical pediatric cardiology fellows, EP fellows, allied health professionals as well as the rest of the PACES community by aligning with groups such as the Society of Pediatric Cardiology Program Directors, whose leadership has agreed to help us link educational efforts via our websites. As part of this effort, we ask that you send us the links to professional educational material from your institution or external material that you find useful so that we may catalog it for the PACES community. Associated with fellow education, we are happy to announce the initiation of PJRT (Publication EP Journal Review by Trainees) Rounds, in which fellows will review and summarize recent PACES-related journal articles for other fellows and PACES members on a quarterly basis (see PJRT section in this newsletter). As training is an integral part of education, the Education Committee would like to survey and track EP training environment and EP related job opportunities to provide accurate and current information regarding career and job prospects for those in PACES-related fields. To that end, the committee will be drafting a “workforce” survey in the near future and we would appreciate it if PACES members (you all) could help by completing the survey when it becomes available.

We are excited for the beginning of this new committee within PACES. If anyone has any questions/ideas for the committee or is interested in joining the committee, please contact either of us via email.


Scott Ceresnak                          Andy Blaufox

Co-Chair                                Co-Chair

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Ed Walsh and Mac Dick need your help!

You will recall that we want to ensure that our important history is captured and we have the privilege of two PACES historians working on this. However, they need your help! From Ed Walsh:

We thought the first step would be to collect as many of old documents (member lists, meeting minutes, etc.) as we can find from the current membership and assemble a centralized data bank. There is still a lot more out there distributed among the past presidents and other long-time members. Send me PDFs or Word files of anything they have stashed away in paper and/or electronic format of PACES documents, minutes, notes from meetings, etc.

Would also be cool to see if anyone has old photographs of PACES members that we can store. We should also post a notice on the web site asking for documents, as well as personal anecdotes regarding old meetings, projects, and personalities.

Drs Walsh and Dick intend to collate all the publications that have resulted from collaborative research from our group.

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PACES Lifetime Achievement Award

PACES has been fortunate to have society members that have made important and broad contributions to the field of pediatric and congenital electrophysiology through research, mentorship, education and innovation. We have honored several of these remarkable individuals with the PACES Lifetime Achievement Award. Past Award winners include Grace Wolf, Paul Gillette, Macdonald Dick II, and Woodrow Benson. We are soliciting nominations for future Lifetime Achievement Award recipients. Please see the attached nomination form for nomination requirements and necessary letters of support.

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Save the Date! The Annual Pre-HRS PACES symposium is scheduled for May 9, 2017 at Lurie Children’s Hospital, Chicago, from 2-6pm. The title of the symposium is “Controversies in EP”. We are looking forward to a new format this year which will include small group discussion on some of the controversies we face in EP. This new format will mean that SPACE WILL BE LIMITED AND REGISTRATION WILL CLOSE ON APRIL 1, 2017 (Not an April Fool’s joke). We will not be able to accept late or same-day registration. Please mark your calendars for this event, and watch (and read!) your emails for more information to follow.

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The Patrick Joyce fund is named for Patrick Joyce who died suddenly in 1991 when he was a freshman in college. He and his family members were later diagnosed with Long QT syndrome, and have become staunch advocates for Long QT research. This summer marked the 9th Annual Patrick Joyce Fun Run, a popular community event that benefits a scholarship fund and PACES research and advocacy.


Links to more information:


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Are you looking for an excellent opportunity to become more involved with PACES and work with colleagues from around the globe? We are actively looking for AP members who are interested in joining PACES committees! Please email Vicki Freedenberg at if you are interested or want more information.

Check out our new, AP members-only, document sharing area on the PACES website! If you have templates of school/camp letters, device forms, patient education forms/documents, etc. that you find useful in your clinical practice and would be willing to share with other AP’s, please send them to me at, and I’ll add them to the website.

The Patrick Joyce Allied Professional Award- The PACES executive board and research committee will fund up to 4 AP members with interest and dedication to research to attend HRS to present their research and gain experience and knowledge for research development (up to $1500). Priority will be given to those who have submitted an abstract to HRS regardless if the abstract gets accepted, and who do not have financial support to attend the sessions, or to those who have demonstrated a commitment to research either independently or collaboratively. Please contact Vicki Freedenberg at for more information. The application will be sent out by email to the AP membership.

Wishing all of you a happy and healthy Holiday Season!

Vicki Freedenberg

Exec Board AP Rep

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The PACES website continues to evolve. Since the annual meeting in May, there have been several behind-the-scenes changes to the website to make it both more useful to patients and families, as well as a bit more private for PACES members. PACES members visiting the website will find that minutes and presentations for past business meetings, annual reports, treasurer reports, and newsletters now require a log-in to view. The Patient Resources section of the site continues to expand, with information pages and links now available to cover many of the basic diagnoses and devices that our patients are likely to encounter. As this library continues to grow, we hope that PACES members will encourage their patients and families to utilize the PACES website as a resource to help educate themselves on their child’s condition.

As the world is looking at us (or at least our site), we’re keeping track of them as well. During a 30-day span this summer, the PACES website had nearly 500 visitors, and over 3,000 visitors between April and September. Nearly one in three “new” visitors to our site are from outside North America. Our most frequented page on the site continues to be “Find an EP Specialist”, followed closely by pages dedicated to PACES members. Visits to the Patient Resource pages have started to increase dramatically over the last several months, and with your support, will continue to grow as word spreads about the quality of information that can be found there.

The Website committee is recruiting! We are currently seeking members (physician, fellow, or allied professional) interested in being a part of building a better site to join us. And as always, we continue to look to the membership for information and events that they believe would be appropriate to post to the site. Anyone interested in joining the Website committee, or simply contributing to it, is encouraged to reach out to either Andrew Papez ( or Melissa Olen (

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Development of a new pediatric and congenital CIED registry

    • Goal is to address the current Knowledge Gap pertaining to ideal indications for implantation of CIEDs including pacemakers, ICDs and implantable recorders in children and patients with congenital heart disease
    • Background: The utility of the current ACC NCDR ICD Registry for determining outcomes of CIEDs in pediatric and congenital heart disease is limited:
      • Many pediatric centers do not participate in the ACC NCDR ICD Registry due to limited hospital support and funding for this effort
      • Data fields in the current ACC NCDR ICD Registry pertaining to specific indications and unique complications of ICD implantation in pediatric and congenital heart disease are limited
      • Many data fields included in the current ACC NCDR ICD Registry are not relevant to pediatric and congenital heart patients and for QI purposes represent a poor use of time and resources
      • There is no collection of data about pacemakers in the current ICD registry
    • Current progress: using the model PACES used to create MAP-IT, a 12 member volunteer working group was formed that used standard QI methodology to create the list of initial database fields. The next step will be to program these fields in a Red-cap Registry similar to MAP-IT so PACES members at different hospitals can trial the registry and hone the fields before submitting the CIED module to the ACC for inclusion in IMPACT version three
  • First EP Quarterly Data Harvest from the MAP-IT module in the IMPACT® Registry happened in July of 2016! Here are the numbers:
    • 100 participating hospitals (98 US, one Canada, one Australia)
    • 77 Diagnostic (only) EP procedures
    • 879 Ablation Procedures
    • 956 EP Procedures Total
  • Call For New PACES Standing Committee Members
    The PACES organization has created a new quality improvement (QI) / Quality assurance (QA) chaired by Tess arel and Steve Seslar. The purpose of this committee is to
  • CIED device registry (in development – currently 12 members)
  • Help Manage the MAP-IT Module with in the IMPACT registry
  • Set up a FAQ on the PACES website for EP data issues in the current version of the IMPACT registry
  • Working with IMPACT reps to fix current problems
  • Develop and implement a plan to validate and use the COMPASS score to allow complexity adjustment
  • Review current and develop next quality metrics for ablation procedures
  • New center recruitment
  • Oversight of the registry’s data dictionary (review and approval of terms to be added / removed from the registry; term definitions
  • Establishing benchmarks for specific metrics
  • Eventual implementation of quality improvement projects
  • Help develop future QA/QI projects
  • Oversight of QA/QI issues such as public reporting of outcomes
  • This committee will also work with the research committee on combined research / QI initiatives.

If you have an interest in participating in these activities, please contact Steve Seslar ( or Tess Saarel (

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The first draft of the manuscript on prevention of sudden death directed at primary care physicians in cooperation with the AAP Section on Cardiology and Cardiac Surgery is 95% complete. It will be sent to the supporting co-authors as soon as the last two sections are written.

Several Task Force members participated in the most recent Cardiac Safety Research Consortium (CSRC) “2nd Annual Think Tank on Prevention of Sudden Cardiac Death in the Young: Developing A Rational, Reliable & Sustainable National Health Care Resource” in Miami this past February with very productive discussion about the status of ECG pre-participation evaluations.

The next Task Force meeting will be on Saturday morning, January 21st during the CHOC Sudden Death conference with details of time and place TBA. The next Task Force project will be the focus of discussion.

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