Cardiology Clinicians Take Heart

By Darryl Jones II, BS, RCIS, RDCS
Interim Heart Center Educator
Methodist Dallas Medical Center

One thing I learned early in working with patients battling heart disease is you can’t be a hypocrite. February is heart month, but if you want your patients’ respect anytime of the year, you have to lead by example.  It starts with being a healthier you and having a heart for health.

I take my commitment to leading a healthier life seriously. I watch my diet by trying to avoid red meat, eating lots of chicken and fish, plus fruits and vegetables. I’ve really worked on portion control.
If I know I’m going out to dinner, I eat healthier breakfasts and lunches. And I believe walking is
the key to life. I walk four miles, two to three times
a week at a good pace. Even for seniors, if they keep walking, chances are they’ll do
pretty well.

Cardiology offers so many career choices, from research and education to clinical intervention and noninvasive treatments. In my career, I’ve had the opportunity to work as an EKG tech and in cardiac rehabilitation, echocardiology, and the cath/electrophysiology lab. What kind of skill set is required for cardiology? Here are some tips:

  • Be willing to constantly learn about emerging new procedures and techniques.
  • Be observant, using critical-thinking skills to meet individual patients’ needs who may not be able to speak for themselves.
  • Be a team player, comfortable working with and supporting others. You always work with team members.
  • Be a good listener and ask insightful questions. You never learn anything when
    you’re talking.

As an educator in the Sam & Anne Kesner Heart Center at Methodist Dallas Medical Center, every day I help patients who are facing challenges with their heart learn ways to improve their lifestyle and overall health. I keep up on the latest research and information about preventing and managing heart disease. The American Heart Association and the American Stroke Association stress the increasing importance of physical fitness — muscular fitness and cardiorespiratory fitness — for decreasing chronic diseases, promoting overall cardiovascular and general health, improving quality of life, and delaying cardiovascular disease and mortality in the U.S. population.

Methodist Dallas offers tremendous opportunities for cardiovascular professionals. From clinically advanced, minimally invasive surgical and cardiac procedures to a full range of sophisticated diagnostic and treatment services for heart disease and heart attacks, Methodist Dallas is on the cutting-edge of heart health. This includes our anticoagulation clinic that helps people manage and monitor the effects of anticoagulant medications and our cardiac rehabilitation programs that help damaged hearts regain their optimum levels of strength and health.

If you have a heart for health and you’re ready to set an example for your patients, then it’s time to choose Methodist Health System. Learn more by visiting Jobs.MethodistHealthSystem.org.

© Methodist Health System

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