MASSDEVICE ON CALL — California medtech giant Edwards Lifesciences (NYSE:EW) announced the launch of a new global philanthropic efforts dubbed "Every Heartbeat Matters," aiming to spread education, screening and treatment of heart valve disease to 1 million people by the year 2020.
Edwards is teaming up with leadership from the American Association for Thoracic Surgery, American College of Cardiology, American Heart Association, Patient Advocate Foundation, Society of Thoracic Surgeons and WomenHeart, who expressed their support this week during at the AATS Annual Meeting in Toronto.
The program will span many years and many countries, hoping to "drive a meaningful change for under-served patients," Edwards chairman & CEO Michael Mussallem said in prepared remarks. At least half of The Edwards Lifesciences Fund’s charitable grants for the next 6 years will go toward the heart valve program. The company gave out $5.5 million total in charitable gifts last year.
The initiative comes on the 10th anniversary of The Edwards Lifesciences Fund, and it also comes in the midst of a heart valve patent infringement war with arch-rival Medtronic (NYSE:MDT). Earlier this month a federal appeals court stayed a ban on U.S. sales of Medtronic’s CoreValve replacement heart valve "pending further notice" in a patent infringement battle with Edwards.
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