UNC Professor Receives $1.7M Grant From Bristol-Myers Squibb

Oct 2, 2017

The Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation has awarded a $1.7 dollar grant to a UNC - Chapel Hill cardiologist.
Credit Brian Batista / For WUNC

A UNC cardiologist has received a $1.7 million grant from the Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation. It will fund the expansion of a care model Doctor Anil Gehi developed for patients with Atrial Fibrillation.

In a 2014 presentation, Doctor Gehi explained the condition can slow blood flow.

“When you have a sluggish blood flow you're prone to forming blood clots,” Gehi said. “If one of those blood clots goes to the brain, you can have the most devastating consequence of Afib, which is a stroke.”

A UNC School of Medicine press release says Gehi's protocol streamlines triage for AFib patients. It reduced AFib hospitalizations from the emergency room by more than 30 percentage points in its first year.

“You have a very poorly-regulated heart rate and so, if your heart rate is very rapid for an extended period of time, you can develop heart failure,” Gehi said.

Gehi hopes this grant can improve access in areas in and around the Triangle, Rocky Mount and High Point through partnerships with local hospitals.