In memory of Mr. Gutfreund, who served on the Board of Trustees at Montefiore, the Stavros Niarchos Foundation has given a $1 million gift to the Children’s Hospital at Montefiore (CHAM) that enables a multidisciplinary team of cardiologists, cardiothoracic surgeons, obstetricians, maternal-fetal medicine specialists, neonatologists, quality in life specialists, advanced nurse practitioners, social workers, and child life specialists, to provide the highest level of fetal cardiac care from the earliest time of diagnosis, typically during the second trimester of pregnancy. The program also offers complete heart care for expectant mothers with serious health conditions such as diabetes, lupus and other diseases that can affect the heart development of the fetus.
“The heart is the first organ that functions in humans, beating spontaneously by week four of development,” said Nadine Choueiter, M.D., director, John H. Gutfreund Fetal Heart Program and Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, Albert Einstein College of Medicine. “Pregnancy can be a time of great worry and stress for expectant mothers so we aim to diagnose babies with complex heart disease at the earliest possible time and reassure families by educating them and planning the best care, in a calm and comfortable setting, before the baby is born.”
John Gutfreund was a true New Yorker with a strong sense of civic duty who believed that less affluent communities deserved quality healthcare, and purposely focused his unwavering commitment to Montefiore and the Bronx.
“My family and I are thrilled by the opening of the John H. Gutfreund Fetal Heart Program at the Children’s Hospital at Montefiore,” said J.P. Gutfreund, son of John Gutfreund and current trustee of Montefiore. “In my father’s more than five decades of devoted board service to Montefiore, CHAM was always a part of the organization that held a special meaning to him. I know he would have been a great supporter of the amazing work that will be done at this center by Dr. Hsu, Dr. Peek, Dr. Choueiter and their team. This facility is made even more special by having been granted by the Stavros Niarchos Foundation. The Niarchos family is a longtime and close friend of ours, and we are incredibly touched by this generous gift. We look forward to all the positive outcomes and support that will be delivered by this center.”
“The Stavros Niarchos Foundation is proud to honor the memory of our good friend, and also support a cutting-edge and essential service at Montefiore Medical Center,” said Andreas C. Dracopoulos, Co-President of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation. “John Gutfreund’s dedication and commitment to this community to facilitate greater access to high quality health care is an inspiration, and we are proud to honor his legacy through support for this innovative program.”
Montefiore Health System is one of New York’s premier academic health systems and is a recognized leader in providing exceptional quality and personalized, accountable care to approximately three million people in communities across the Bronx, Westchester and the Hudson Valley. It is comprised of 11 hospitals, including the Children’s Hospital at Montefiore, Burke Rehabilitation Hospital and close to 200 outpatient care sites. The advanced clinical and translational research at its medical school, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, directly informs patient care and improves outcomes. From the Montefiore-Einstein Centers of Excellence in cancer, cardiology and vascular care, pediatrics, and transplantation, to its preeminent school-based health program, Montefiore is a fully integrated healthcare delivery system providing coordinated, comprehensive care to patients and their families.
For more information about the John H. Gutfreund Fetal Heart Program, see here.