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Miller School Alumnus Awarded for His Contributions to Cardiovascular Surgery

Dr. Jeffrey Jacobs, a triple ‘Cane, was recognized for his surgical expertise and the free care he provides to Jamaican children.

University of Miami Miller School of Medicine alumnus Jeffrey Jacobs, B.S. ’84, M.D. ’88, a renowned cardiovascular surgeon, was honored with Hall of Fame recognition at the Miller School’s Medical Alumni Association (MAA) award ceremony in March.

Maria Gutierrez, M.D., President Julio Frenk, Jeffrey Jacobs, M.D., Dean Henri Ford, M.D., Alberto Mitrani, M.D., at the MAA Hall of Fame award ceremony
Dr. Maria Gutierrez, University of Miami President Julio Frenk, Dr. Jeffrey Jacobs, Dean Henri Ford and Dr. Alberto Mitrani at the MAA Hall of Fame Award Ceremony.

Dr. Jacobs, a professor of surgery and pediatrics in the UF Health Congenital Heart Center and UF Health Shands Children’s Hospital, believes that success as a doctor comes down to three things:

“The first thing, and the most important thing, is to make life better for our patients,” said Dr. Jacobs. “Secondly, to generate new knowledge through research and pass that knowledge to the next generation. And, finally, use that knowledge to help the less fortunate.”

Merit-Based Alumni Recognition

The MAA’s Hall of Fame award is presented to alumni who have achieved national or international recognition for their positive impact on the medical profession. Dr. Jacobs became the 31st Miller School alumnus to hold this honor.

“The Hall of Fame Award is the highest honor given by the Medical Alumni Association,” Maria Pilar Gutierrez, M.D. ’90, president of the Medical Alumni Association, said. “It signifies our recognition of the accomplishments of our renowned graduates.”

Alberto A. Mitrani, M.D. ’84, chair of the Medical Alumni Awards selection committee, told ceremony guests that the Miller School of Medicine is one of the few medical schools in the United States that uses a merit-based system for alumni recognition.

He introduced Dr. Jacobs by celebrating his expertise.

“Dr. Jacobs, you have made an outstanding contribution to the medical profession and society as a whole by advancing the understanding of cardiovascular disease,” Dr. Mitrani said.

A Career of Cardiovascular Surgery Expertise

Dr. Jacobs is a triple ‘Cane. He received his undergraduate degree in 1985 and his M.D. from the Miller School in 1988. He then completed a five-year residency in general surgery followed by a two-year residency in thoracic and cardiovascular surgery at the University of Miami/Jackson Memorial Health System.

Throughout his career, Dr. Jacobs has demonstrated expertise in pediatric heart transplantation, extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO), extracorporeal life support (ECLS), tracheal reconstruction and cardiovascular and congenital heart disease. He has performed more than 4,300 cardiovascular procedures.

Since 2006, Dr. Jacobs has organized annual trips to Jamaica, where he and a team of assistants and students provide free cardiovascular care to more than 140 children.

“Part of our job is to care for those less fortunate and I think service and charity are part of the responsibility of any profession,” Dr. Jacobs said. “Dr. Mitrani asked what I’m most proud of. I’m most proud of the patients we operate on every day, but I’m also proud of what our team does in Jamaica and what the Jamaican team continues to do every day.”

Henri Ford, M.D., M.H.A., dean and chief academic officer of the Miller School, congratulated Dr. Jacobs and reflected on the impact alumni have on the national reputation of the Miller School of Medicine.

“Thank you for everything you’ve done to elevate the profile of the Miller School of Medicine nationally and internationally,” he said. “The fact is, our alumni are the very best ambassadors. You are part of our strategic plan to elevate the profile of the medical school.”

Tags: alumni, Hall of Fame award, Medical Alumni Association