2023 Spring Newsletter

Letter from the President

With bittersweet emotion, I am writing my last President’s letter to all of you. I feel truly honored to have been given the opportunity to lead this amazing group for the past 8 years. The Society and all it represents has become such a part of me. Looking back, I continue to be astounded over all we have accomplished together. Watching this Society grow from an idea between friends into what it is today has truly been the highlight of my career. I feel privileged to have been a part of what will outlive me, and all of us. Though I am stepping down as President, I know that we are all in great hands. Anita has been my partner since the beginning, and I am certain she will lead us into a future of success. I assure you, I will still be around, serving on the Board as your “Past President”, inventing yet another new position for us. So, for the last time, here is my report to all of you on behalf of the Fetal Heart Society Governing Board, on a very successful year for our Society...

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Join us for the 3rd Annual Fetal Heart Society Scientific Session!

The Fetal Heart Society is excited to host its 3rd Scientific Session on Sunday, August 27, 2023 as a Pre-Conference for the 8th World Congress of Pediatric Cardiology and Cardiac Surgery August 27-September 1st in Washington DC. This year, the Scientific Session will bring together international experts featuring presentations on cardiac development and fetal cardiac physiology, fetal cardiac imaging, and challenges of prenatal counseling. The World Congress includes an amazing Fetal Cardiology track woven throughout the conference as well! Be sure to select the 3rd Fetal Heart Society Scientific Session as a Pre-conference when you register for the 8th World Congress of Pediatric Cardiology and Cardiac Surgery. We look forward to seeing you there!

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The 2023 Board Election Results are In!

Congratulations to our new FHS President Anita Moon-Grady and our returning Publications Officer Lisa Hornberger as elected by our FHS Membership! 

Our heartfelt gratitude to Mary Donofrio for her amazing leadership as the founding Fetal Heart Society President. Here are some reflections from our new president, Anita Moon-Grady, on Mary as she concludes her presidency.

“As Mary Donofrio finishes her term as President of the Fetal Heart Society, we have a great opportunity to recognize and acknowledge her contributions to the field of fetal cardiology and the organization. Dr. Donofrio is a true pioneer in the field of fetal cardiology and her dedication to improving the care of fetuses with heart disease is truly remarkable. Her leadership as President of the Fetal Heart Society has been invaluable in promoting excellence in fetal cardiology through education, research, and advocacy.”

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Looking for ways to get more involved in FHS leadership? Check out the numerous FHS Committees in the newsletter, under the "About" tab on our website or email us at [email protected] & [email protected].

Upcoming Election!

Due to Dr. Moon-Grady assuming her role as President this July, her current board position will need to be filled.

The open officer position for the next 3 year term beginning July 1, 2023 is Member at Large, serving on the Publications Committee. Click here for a summary of job responsibilities for the position.



  • must be an Active (full) Member in good standing
  • experience serving on the Research or Publications Committee preferred

Candidates must submit a statement of interest not exceeding 200 words and their CV to [email protected] by Friday, April 14th, 2023. Only Active members in good standing who also meet the qualifications above are eligible.


The Research Collaborative Committee has been busy and at work!

Welcome to Shiraz Maskatia and Jennifer Cohen who have recently joined the RCC!

The next quarterly RCC meeting will take place on Wednesday, April 19, 2023.

The RCC is now holding separate monthly team meetings with each active FHS research project presenting once per quarter. They are fairly casual and intended to serve as working group updates to continue to support research progress. All members are welcome to attend. The next RCC Working Group Team Meeting will take place on Thursday, April 20th. The teleconference link for this meeting can be found here.

There are numerous research projects in various stages of development. Some of them are accepting new collaborators! Remember that you must be a FHS member to participate in a FHS sponsored study, so join FHS today if you're not already a member!

Click for list of RCC projects

The Publications Committee is celebrating!

The Publications Committee welcomes Kim Haberer to the team!

FHS research studies have resulted in 2 abstracts presented at ACC 2023, and another submitted to ASE 2023! Several abstracts and manuscripts are well underway and getting close to completion.

In addition to the growing number of FHS scientific abstracts, the Publications Committee wanted to share the list of published papers over the years. With the active research taking place, we know the number of our published manuscripts will grow in the coming years. We are tremendously excited about this!

Click for list of FHS manuscripts

The Education Committee is providing resources!

The Education Committee continues to expand and update the Provider Counseling Sheets available only for FHS Members.

Sharon Weinberger is leading an effort to create a database of Epic Dot phrases that can be imported into your EHR and used as an adjunct to your fetal consultation letter. Sharon is collecting phrases from institutions and will create one dot phrase for each diagnosis to be available to the membership. Contact Sharon at sharon.weinberge[email protected] to submit your dot phrases to contribute to this initiative!

The online teaching tool “Imaging Heart Disease in the Fetus” should be complete by June. It consists of 22 Modules, and at the end of each module are 5-6 questions for you to answer. You will be able to take a pre- and post- test in the FHS environment to see if your score improves.

Jennifer Co-Vu will be leading the first FHS Twitter live stream journal club. Look for more details @FetalHeartSoc or under the Education tab of our webpage as they become available!

And finally, "Prenatal Cardiology" is accepting cases for publication and welcomes submissions from Fetal Heart Society members. The journal is especially excited about cases that have been presented during Fetal Heart Society webinars and at fetal cardiology meetings.

You can watch or listen to recordings of all past webinar sessions on the FHS website here.

FHS Educational Webinar Series

Make sure to attend the monthly FHS Education Webinar Series on the 2nd Thursday of the month at 8:30 pm EST. These webinars have covered a broad range of topics applicable to pediatric cardiologists, maternal-fetal medicine specialists, geneticists, sonographers, nurses, and other healthcare specialists.

If you have suggestions for future webinar topics, please contact: Theresa Tacy, Mishella Perez, Chris Lindblade, Nelangi Pinto, or Mary Donofrio at their respective emails below:

WeCan Fetal Heart Screening

Virtual Symposium

June 10 and 11, 2023

(an FHS Endorsed educational meeting)

Please join us for the free 2-half day WeCan Fetal Heart Screening Virtual Symposium!

The course will include lectures and real-time scanning focused on comprehensive assessment of the fetal heart during obstetrical ultrasound screening and is tailored for sonographers, radiologists, obstetricians and trainees.

Register Here

The Mentorship Committee provides connections for career development

The mentorship subcommittee had its inaugural webinar in February 2023 on “Creating an Effective Mentor-Mentee Relationship”. There were excellent presentations on formalization of mentoring infrastructure, resources presented by Dr. Akins and personal journeys shared by Drs. Hornberger and McBrien- illustrating strengths, behaviors and attributes of a successful mentor-mentee relationship. A stimulating panel discussion by Dr. Jay Pruetz, Lacey Schoppe, RDCS, and Nathalie Dutil, RN, BScN representing the impact of mentorship for physician, sonographer, and nursing careers!

If you are seeking mentorship or available to provide mentorship in the areas of career advancement, program building and negotiations, please complete this survey.

Calling all Program Leaders!

FHS-Program Leaders' Group comprises 120 members from 36 states in the USA and 13 other countries. We aim to build a community, share experiences, gather benchmarking data, and facilitate QI collaboratives.

The current group comprises 73 fetal cardiac program directors, 42 QI leaders, and 31 others.

If you would like to join the group, please fill out the interest form (takes < 2 min) by scanning the QR code above or click here to take the survey.

Program Leaders Committee Updates

We received an overwhelming response to our “call for committee members”. Through a thorough review of all highly qualified applicants, seven members were selected for the initial committee with a plan to expand the work groups in the future. We will reach out to other applicants as opportunities arise. Below are the updates from the specific subcommittees:

1.  Fetal cardiology benchmarking survey update (Jackie Shuplock (lead), Angela McBrien, Nelangi Pinto, Shubhi Srivastava, Sheetal Patel)

  • The fetal cardiology benchmarking survey is an international survey of academic and non-academic fetal cardiology practices. The information gathered will be critical for programs to plan appropriate resource allocation, design QI initiatives, and advocate for an adequate workforce.
  • Since its launch in mid-February, we have received >90 responses already. The survey will remain open till April 30th and accepts one entry per program and takes 10-15 min to complete. If your program has not completed the survey yet, click here. THANK YOU for your participation!

2.  QI subcommittee update (Rick Michelfelder (lead), Ann Kavanaugh-McHugh, Sheetal Patel)

  • The QI subcommittee is organizing a QI Webinar for the FHS Webinar Series entitled "Getting Better Together: Practical Approaches to Quality Improvement in Fetal Cardiology," on April 13th, 20:30 EST. We hope to share our experiences with QA programs within our Fetal Cardiology Programs and have a panel discussion to discuss tips, pitfalls, and wisdom regarding developing and running a Fetal Cardiology QA/PI program.
  • The committee also developed QI-specific survey items for the Program Leaders Committee fetal cardiology program benchmarking survey. We look forward to seeing the data from the benchmarking survey, as these data will help to steer our efforts moving forward.

3. Combined protocols update (Miwa Geiger (lead), Joyce Johnson, Nitin Madan, Sheetal Patel)

  • The protocols subcommittee is in the process of selecting working group members. The initial protocols in focus include "Early Pregnancy Fetal Echocardiography Protocol" and "Maternal Hyperoxygenation Protocol."

The FHS Nursing Committee is an active interest group….come get involved!

The FHS nurse interest group has been very busy! We continue to meet virtually and exchange on various subjects of interest. We are now up to over 60 members and growing. We have an email distribution group that nurse coordinators/ navigators use to send out questions to the group. We aim to learn from one another and strive for continuous practice improvement. Our next live Zoom session will be in April or May. Email Nathalie Dutil or Sonila Mustafa at [email protected] and [email protected] for more information.

THANK YOU to our Fetal Heart Society Institutional Sponsors!

The FHS would like to acknowledge our institutional sponsors. Congratulations and welcome to our newest sponsors Atrium Health Levine Children’s Congenital Heart Center, Children's Wisconsin, Cleveland Clinic Children's Hospital, Rady Children's Hospital - San Diego, and Washington University School of Medicine!

Also, a special thank you to Texas Children's, Stanford Children's, Children’s National, Nationwide Children’s, Children’s Health System of Texas, The University of Utah School of Medicine / Intermountain Primary Children's Hospital, Lurie Children’s, OSF Healthcare - Children's Hospital of Illinois, Seattle Children’s, Nemours Children’s, Johns Hopkins All Children’s, Arkansas Children's, Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt, and Atrium Health Levine Children’s Congenital Heart Center who are our very special Platinum Sponsors, allowing unlimited memberships for both active and affiliate members.

There are two levels for institutional sponsorship. Both include recognition on the FHS website, newsletter and all FHS presentations/publications:

  • Gold ($5,000/year): includes 5 active and 5 affiliate members
  • Platinum ($7,500/year): includes unlimited active and affiliate members

If interested in institutional sponsorship, please contact [email protected].

FHS Committee Chairs

  • Conference: Mary Donofrio, Chris Lindblade, Nelangi Pinto
  • Correspondence: Chris Lindblade
  • DCC: Lindsay Freud
  • Education: Theresa Tacy, Mishella Perez
  • Finance: Bhawna Arya
  • Grants: Lisa Hornberger
  • Membership: Allison Divanovic
  • Mentorship: Shubhika Srivastava
  • Nursing: Sonila Mustafa & Nathalie Dutil
  • Publications: Lisa Hornberger
  • Program Leaders: Sheetal Patel
  • Research: Shaine Morris
  • Social Media: Jennifer Co-Vu
  • Sonographer: Mishella Perez
  • Website: Michael Walsh

Interested in joining or learning more about a specific FHS committee? Email us at [email protected] & [email protected].

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