The physicians and staff at the Manatee Memorial Hospital Heart and Vascular Center
Manatee Memorial Hospital became the first hospital in Florida to achieve 500 WATCHMAN/WATCHMAN FLX™ cardiac procedures on Wednesday, October 28, 2020. The hospital is also the first on the Florida West Coast to enroll in the WATCHMAN OPTION clinical trial being led by Daniel Friedman, MD, FACC, Manatee Memorial Hospital’s Medical Director of WATCHMAN.
The WATCHMAN Left Atrial Appendage Closure Implants are designed for patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation (AF) as an alternative to long-term blood thinners. The first WATCHMAN procedure in Manatee and Sarasota Counties was performed at Manatee Memorial Hospital in September 2015. Manatee Memorial was also the first hospital on the Florida West Coast to offer patients the next-generation WATCHMAN FLX™ Left Atrial Appendage Closure (LAAC) Implant.
Manatee Memorial Hospital’s WATCHMAN multidisciplinary team consists of electrophysiologists, interventional cardiologists, cardiothoracic surgeons and staff who are specially trained. Dr. Friedman oversees the program and is joined by other interventional cardiologists including Joseph Pace, MD; Jared Collins, DO; and Enrique Rivera, MD, and imaging cardiologists including Eugene M. Parent, MD, FACC, Manatee Memorial Hospital’s Medical Director of Echocardiography; David Buck, DO; Brian W. Holyk, DO; and Charles Cevallos, DO.
"We are proud to be able to offer this to our community," said Dr. Friedman. "People on blood thinners for atrial fibrillation who are at high risk for falls, people who lead active lifestyles and take blood thinners, those who cannot regulate their blood thinner levels, and those with a history of bleeding are great candidates for receiving a WATCHMAN."