Communicating Complex Information
For the last decade, Dr. Jennifer Mirza has been leaning on a host of communication skills to help her patients understand their diagnoses. Called to medicine from the drive to help people feel better, Dr. Mirza began gravitating toward cardiology during her internship. “I loved the imaging studies such as ultrasounds of the heart and stress tests. It just clicked with me,” she says. Now, Dr. Mirza is able to combine the analytical allure of imaging with her desire to help people feel their best in what she notes has been a highly rewarding career. “In general, my happiest moments during my career have been when I see patients finally understand what is going on with their heart health and make positive changes to improve their long-term health,” she says.
Osteopathic Medicine Degree:
West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine – Lewisburg, WV
1. What sets your practice apart?
I love building relationships with my patients. Part of building relationships is communicating. I strive to communicate complex cardiac disease processes and information in a way that helps my patients understand and feel comfortable.
2. What do you love most about your profession?
All of the advances and new treatments in valvular heart disease and heart failure. It is an exciting time to be practicing cardiology because of the new options we have to help patients feel better and live longer.
3. What is your best advice for patients?
Stay active! One of the most important things as we age is to remain as active as we can. Start a walking routine. Join a class that gets you moving. Dance in your living room!
4. What do you see as the most exciting new development for your profession?
Percutaneous treatment of valvular heart disease. This is an option for “fixing” a heart valve that is not functioning properly without having open heart surgery. It is not appropriate for everyone, but it gives patients an option that otherwise would not be able to be treated.
5. What is your philosophy when it comes to the care of your patients?
I treat my patients as I would want my family to be treated.