Inspiring future generations of women in cardiology to break through the glass ceiling | #TeamBartsHealth blogs

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Inspiring future generations of women in cardiology to break through the glass ceiling

“Equal opportunities for all trainees in cardiology is crucial. We need to inspire future generations to reach higher than us,” said Julia Grapsa, consultant cardiologist at St Bartholomew’s Hospital.

Julia completed her training at Imperial College and Royal Brompton Hospital before undertaking her PhD on idiopathic pulmonary arterial hypertension and multimodality imaging in 2010.

In 2013 she received her first consultant position in Cambridge, and became  the first female cardiologist for the Cleveland Clinic branch in Abu Dhabi.

She then moved back to London as the lead for the echocardiography department at The Royal London Hospital and a cardiology consultant at St Bartholomew’s.

“I have travelled a lot; I have a variety of experiences and I keep the best from every place,” Julia said.

In February 2019 Julia was the first non-American women to be appointed editor-in-chief for the American College of Cardiology and its new journal, JACC Case Reports, an achievement she’s particularly proud of.

Julia is particularly pleased that she was the first author for national guidelines on echocardiography in pulmonary hypertension.

She has also received two grants under the European Society of Cardiology,  where she served as clinical case gallery chair and social media editor for four years.

Julia recently presented a number of podcasts at the American College in Cardiology on mentorship and sponsorship.

She says, “it was important to understand how young people feel about medicine and the changes that need to take place.

“That’s why we need to be a good example for our trainees as there is a lot of pessimism among young people – we need to guide and promote them,” she said.

“We have gone quite far to include more women in meetings or boards, and I’ve contributed to that effort through American College of Cardiology and European Society of Cardiology.

“But there is more we need to do to create inclusive and equal opportunities for our colleagues,” Julia said.

Her main aim at Barts Health is to promote teamwork, companionship and fairness between colleagues, together with excellent care for patients.

Julia says, “I’m motivated every day by my trainees as well as great mentors I’ve had throughout my career.”

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