Dr. William McAlexander recipient of 2017 James L. Cox Fellowship

Feb 28, 2018

William McAlexander
William McAlexander, M.D., Thoracic Surgery Specialist at Brookwood Baptist Medical Center, awarded the 2017 James L. Cox Fellowship in Atrial Fibrillation Surgery

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – September 27, 2017 – Brookwood Baptist Health, together with the American Association for Thoracic Surgery (AATS) Graham Foundation, has announced that Dr. William McAlexander has been selected as a recipient of the 2017 James L. Cox Fellowship in Atrial Fibrillation Surgery. Dr. McAlexander was chosen out of 334 other surgeons.

“I’m honored to have the opportunity to participate in this immersive learning experience with guidance from top experts and leaders in the atrial fibrillation field,” says Dr. McAlexander. “I look forward to an expanded knowledge and exposure to the surgical treatment of Afib that I can bring back to my patients and the Brookwood surroundings communities.”

The fellowship was set up to provide newly graduated cardiothoracic surgeons with a highly engaging educational experience at leading surgical Afib centers across the United States. Eight nationally recognized experts in Afib surgery will act as “host surgeons”, providing one-on-one mentoring and formalized training to award winners over the course of three months. The fellowship will also include a didactic training course led by Dr. James Cox, whose pioneering work established the field of Afib ablation, and his protégé, Dr. Ralph Damiano, who chairs the Afib fellowship program on behalf of the AATS Graham Foundation and AtriCure.

The three month fellowship will provide hands-on educational training to enhance clinical understanding and surgical proficiency in treating patients with atrial fibrillation under the guidance of leading surgeon-educators in this field. The specific learning objectives will be to provide the foundational knowledge of the pathophysiology of Afib, the rationale for surgical treatment and the ability to perform the Afib correction procedure over a range of surgical approaches.

As a result of this training and the unique mentorship opportunity afforded to these fellows, they may ascend to leadership roles in surgical Afib treatment over the course of their careers.

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Dr. William W McAlexander is a Thoracic Surgery Specialist in Birmingham, Alabama. He graduated with honors from Tulane University School of Medicine in 1998. Having more than 19 years of diverse experiences, especially in Thoracic Surgery, Dr. William W McAlexander affiliates with Brookwood Baptist Medical Center, and cooperates with other doctors and specialists in many medical groups including Surgical Associates Of Jonesboro, Inc., Baptist Health Center - Princeton Cardiothoracic Surgery. 

The fellowship is named after Dr. James L. Cox, a leading pioneer in the development of solutions to treat Afib. Dr. Cox has been working on educating surgeons globally for decades to reduce the global epidemic of Afib. He received his MD from the University of Tennessee, and after serving with the US Army medical corps, he completed his residency at Duke University, where he joined the faculty as an Assistant Professor of Surgery in 1998. He then moved to the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, where he became Professor and Chief of the Division of Cardiothoracic Surgery, specializing in surgical procedures for cardiac arrhythmias. In 1987, he performed his first “maze” procedure, which was recognized as the first cure for severe forms of Afib. From 1990 to 1997, he was the Evarts A. Graham Professor of Surgery at Washington University and in 1997 moved to Georgetown University to become Chairman of the Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery, a position from which he retired in 2000. He is currently the Evarts A. Graham Professor of Surgery Emeritus at Washington University School of Medicine.

With roots extending more than 90 years, Brookwood Baptist Health includes trusted providers from the former Brookwood Medical Center and Baptist Health System and is operated by Dallas-based Tenet Healthcare Corp.  Representing the largest healthcare network in Central Alabama, the network’s community of care is comprised of five acute care hospitals with more than 1,700 licensed beds: Brookwood Baptist Medical Center, Princeton Baptist Medical Center, Shelby Baptist Medical Center, Walker Baptist Medical Center and Citizens Baptist Medical Center. Brookwood Baptist Health also provides patients with the largest primary care network in the state, along with physician practices, diagnostic and outpatient surgery centers and a freestanding emergency department. Brookwood Baptist Health is united in service and devotion to the people of Central Alabama and dedicated to putting people back at the center of healthcare.  For more information, please visit BrookwoodBaptistHealth.com. 

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