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About us

Heart to Heart Global Cardiac Care is a 501(c)3 volunteer-driven charity organization, led by a governing board of directors and enhanced by the expertise of a highly-engaged medical advisory council. Board members provide organizational oversight, ensuring continuous programmatic, financial, and legal accountability.

Simply stated, Heart to Heart is a tightly woven network of advanced cardiac specialists and program development experts who work together as volunteers to develop new self-sustaining regional children’s heart centers where thousands of children born with heart defects can undergo life-saving treatment. And our expertise doesn’t stop there: as Heart to Heart expands globally, we are reaching more and more adult heart patients through our work to raise awareness of valvular disease and expand access to surgical treatment.

To implement our program model, our network of experts is supported and coordinated year-round by a professional administrative staff of three, in addition to many highly skilled non-medical volunteers.

Our medical volunteers, all practicing cardiac specialists, travel halfway across the world because they have seen for themselves the dramatic impact they are having when they teach and train aspiring specialists within the framework of our program model.

Heart to Heart also partners with foundations and the media to raise awareness and funds to enable us to advance heart care worldwide.

Leveraging our resources to save lives

Our volunteers are professionally coordinated year-round by our small staff headquartered in the San Francisco Bay Area. Together we leverage every donated dollar and in-kind gift of pro bono medical services to maximize number of children we can save as we develop sustainable cardiac care in areas of need around the world.

Our vision

Worldwide, all children and adults, regardless of where they are born or where they live, will have access to life-saving heart care.

Our mission

Heart to Heart develops self-sustaining new medical programs in areas of need, measurably expanding access to life-saving cardiac care. Teams of specialists trained by Heart to Heart help to reduce the global burden of heart disease today and for generations to come.

Founded in 1989: Why we exist
 Heart to Heart was founded during the Cold War in 1989 to save babies and children in the USSR from dying of congenital heart defects. While breakthrough advances were benefiting children in the U.S., Soviet physicians – isolated from major advances in cardiac surgery being made in the West – remained unable to treat Russian children born with heart disease. The education-based program model pioneered by our founders led to great success, resulting in an excellent self-sustaining children’s heart center in St. Petersburg, which was publicly acknowledged as the country’s “best infant open heart surgery program” and became a national model. Click here to watch CBS News 60 Minutes coverage of our work in St. Petersburg.

This accomplishment inspired our board of directors to expand Heart to Heart’s mission and develop more centers and save thousands more children. In this second phase of Heart to Heart, we refined our program model as our volunteers continued to develop new children’s heart teams throughout the heartland of Russia – with the goal of every child having access to life-saving care by 2019. Click here to watch CBS News 60 Minutes coverage of our work in St. Petersburg.

By 2015 it became clear that we were on track to successfully complete our Into the Russian Heartland Campaign a full five years ahead of schedule(!). We readily embraced the prospect of expanding our work globally to reach children in the many other areas world where children still lack access to lifesaving heart surgery. We entered the organization’s third phase of expansion with an initiative called Going Global.

Watch the Heart to Heart Story video