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World Heart Awards 2020

The World Heart Awards are all about celebrating those Members who have gone above and beyond in their mission to fight cardiovascular disease and promote healthy hearts in their communities and beyond.

Campaign Awards

Effective Voice of the Year

British Heart Foundation – UK

Nation of Lifesavers

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Best Prevention Campaign

Royal Health Awareness Society – Jordan

The law protects our heath… put it out!

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Most Creative Campaign

Heart Foundation – Australia

Australia’s Worst Serial Killer

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Best Video Campaign

InterAmerican Heart Foundation – Argentina


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Individual Awards

WHF Lifetime Achievement Award

Prof Henry Blackburn

Prof Blackburn has researched cardiovascular disease epidemiology and prevention and its history. He was Project Officer for the Seven Countries Study from 1957 to 1972 and then became Laboratory Director upon Ancel Keys’s retirement. In 1983 he became director of the Division of Epidemiology and merged the programs of Physiological Hygiene and Epidemiology. He also led the Minnesota heart survey and the Minnesota Heart Health Program from 1979-1990. Since retirement in 1996, he created and manages the University of Minnesota website: Heart Attack Prevention. A History of Cardiovascular Disease Epidemiology.

Prof Pekka Puska

Professor Puska is a Professor, Finnish Physician, and former Member of Parliament. He formerly held the position of Director General of the National Institute for Health and Welfare, Finland and has had a significant influence on public health research and practice both in Finland and globally for several decades.

Prof Puska headed the National Public Health Institute of Finland (KTL) from 2003 to 2009. Following the merger of KTL and the National Research and Development Centre for Welfare and Health (STAKES) in 2009, he became Director-General of the National Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) and held this position until 2013.

WHF Advocacy Award in Cardiovascular Health

Prof Sania Nishtar

Sania Nishtar is a Pakistani physician, cardiologist, author and activist who is the current Special Assistant on Poverty Alleviation and Social Safety to the Prime Minister of Pakistan, with the status of Federal Minister, and BISP Chairperson. Previously she served in the interim federal cabinet in 2013 overseeing public health, education and science.

Nishtar co-chaired WHO’s High-Level Commission on Non-communicable diseases along with the Presidents of Uruguay, Finland and Sri Lanka. She is a member of the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on the future of healthcare and co-chairs the U.S National Academy of Sciences Global Study on the Quality of Healthcare in low and middle-income countries. In addition, she also chairs the United Nations International Institute for Global Health’s International Advisory Board and a member of the International Advisory Board on Global Health of the German Federal Government.

In 1998, Nishtar founded Heartfile, an Islamabad-based health policy think tank. Since 2014, Nishtar has been a Co-Chair of the WHO Commission on Ending Childhood Obesity and also serves on the board of United Nations University’s Institute for Global Health.

Prof Tom Frieden

Thomas R. Frieden, M.D. (born December 7, 1960) is an American infectious disease and public health physician. He serves as president and CEO of Resolve to Save Lives, a $225 million, five-year initiative to prevent epidemics and cardiovascular disease.

He was the director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and he was the administrator of the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry from 2009 to 2017, appointed by President Barack Obama. As a commissioner of the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene from 2002 to 2009 he came to some prominence for banning smoking in the city’s restaurants as well as the serving of trans fat.

Best Global Heart Journal Paper

Prof Peter Zilla

for ‘Global Unmet Needs in Cardiac Surgery’

Prof Zilla is the lead author of the paper Global Unmet Needs in Cardiac Surgery, which aimed to address the scarcity of knowledge regarding both cardiac surgical needs and capabilities outside high-income regions.

Prof Zilla’s main research foci have been in the fields of tissue engineering and prosthetic cardiovascular implants. Pioneering tissue engineering since 1983, he developed a method of culturing the patient’s own endothelial cells on prosthetic surfaces. Today, after an international multi-centre study in the 1990s and with almost 500 patient-implants, the program is a show-case for clinical tissue engineering. Professor Zilla’s second focus, improving heart valve prostheses for the young patients of developing countries, has led to a reduction of the prosthetic degeneration process by 97%. His engagement in the field of rheumatic heart disease has additionally awarded him international recognition as a plenary speaker.

WHF Award for Outstanding Contribution to Cardiovascular Health

Dr Kay-Tee Khaw

Kay-Tee Khaw is a British physician and academic, specialising in the maintenance of health in later life and the causes and prevention of chronic diseases. She has been Professor of Clinical Gerontology at the University of Cambridge since 1989 and a Fellow of Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge since 1991. From 1979 to 1984, Khaw held a Wellcome Trust Research Fellowship, and worked at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, St Mary’s Hospital, London, and the University of California, San Diego. She was a senior registrar in community medicine at the School of Clinical Medicine, University of Cambridge, between 1986 and 1989. In 1989, she was appointed Professor of Clinical Gerontology. In 1991, she was also elected a Fellow of Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge. Since 2015, she has been a Jeffrey Cheah Professorial Fellow at the college.

Prof Jane Somerville

Jane Somerville is a British emeritus professor of cardiology, Imperial College, who is best known for defining the concept and subspecialty of grown ups with congenital heart disease (GUCH) and being chosen as the physician involved with Britain’s first heart transplantation in 1968.

Her work led to the opening of the world’s first dedicated ward for children and adolescents with congenital heart disease, the first World Congress of Paediatric Cardiology in London, and a GUCH charity which was later renamed “The Somerville Foundation” in her honour. The medical professionals who she trained and who have come to celebrate and follow her are known as “Unicorns”.