Ricardo A. Lazala, MD, is Vice Chair for Clinical Operations in the Department of Cardiovascular Surgery at The Mount Sinai Hospital and Director of Cardiovascular Surgery Clinical Services for the Mount Sinai Health System. He is responsible for the day-to-day operational leadership of the Cardiovascular Surgery program at The Mount Sinai Hospital, which annually performs over 1,800 open heart procedures and directs the Mount Sinai Health System's team of Cardiovascular Surgery Physician Assistants and Certified Cardiovascular Perfusionists.
Dr. Lazala has received numerous awards for leadership during his 17-year tenure at Mount Sinai, including the 2012 Presidential Service Award, which honors individuals who exemplify the highest level of dedication to Mount Sinai, expressing compassion toward patients and providing leadership to staff. During his award presentation, Kenneth L. Davis, MD, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Mount Sinai Health System, said of Dr. Lazala, "If you could weigh energy and passion, Ricardo's would be off the charts. One of his army of admirers says, 'He binds us into a cohesive and functional team.' Relying on an extraordinary set of skills, he is able to tackle the toughest challenge and handle it with poise, always leading with a dedicated patient-first philosophy."
In 2013, Dr. Lazala was recognized with the Hospital Manager of the Year Award at the 13th Annual Healthcare Diversity Awards presented by the National Hispanic Chamber of Commerce on Health. He also received the 2006 Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery Faculty Award in recognition of extraordinary dedication to patient care, academic productivity, and fiduciary responsibility.
Dr. Lazala serves as a board member and Chief Operating Officer/Mission Medical Coordinator of the Mount Sinai-Hospital General de la Plaza de la Salud (HGPS) Cardiovascular Initiative, a series of philanthropic voluntary surgical missions started in 2011 with the goal of establishing a mitral valve repair reference center in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, to provide cardiovascular surgery to patients with limited financial resources.
Read more about the Mount Sinai - HGPS Cardiovascular Initiative and Dr. Lazala's work on Adam Pick's Blog at HeartValveSurgery.com:
- Medical Mission Update #1: Dominican Republic Here We Come!
- Medical Mission Update #2 - How Is Dr. Ricardo Lazala Preparing Mount Sinai For The Mission?
- Medical Mission Update #3 - An Amazing Day in Santo Domingo!
- Medical Mission Update #4: Ramona & Junior Get A 'Second Chance' At Life In The Dominican Republic
One of Dr. Lazala's lasting contributions to the Department of Cardiovascular Surgery is the creation of a Hemodynamics Lab within the cardiac cluster of operating suites where surgical staff performs vital tests on the blood otherwise done by the lab, typically located in another area of the hospital. Having the ability to perform tests such as thromboelastography, PT INR, as well as platelet counts, steps away from the patient alleviates the need to send blood for testing down to the hospitals' lab during cardiac procedures. This lab is beneficial to the patient as surgical time is decreased and these vital results are garnered much quicker.
Dr. Lazala is a member of the Coagulation and Hemostasis in Cardiac Surgery Research Team where the group investigates the hemostatic defects commonly present in the cardiac surgical population due to cardiopulmonary bypass and the perioperative use of antiplatelet and anticoagulant agents.
Dr. Lazala attended The Autonomic University of Santo Domingo, and then continued his training at The Technologic University of Santiago where he earned his medical degree in 1988. He held various positions within the Health System of the Dominican Republic, including Medical Director of Maimon Sub Health Center in Banao as well as Medical Sub Director of the San Ramon Clinic in Banao, Dominican Republic.
Dr. Lazala was appointed Senior Director, Clinical Services for the Department of Cardiovascular Surgery, and received his Assistant Professor appointment in Cardiothoracic Surgery in 2010. He received his Assistant Professor appointment in Anesthesiology in 2012.