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St. Francis appoints chief of cardiovascular surgery

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St. Francis Medical Center has named Dr. Robert Poston chief of cardiovascular surgery. St. Francis said Poston is among a handful of cardiac surgeons in the nation who specialize in robot-assisted minimally invasive coronary bypass surgery.

Poston comes to St. Francis from the University of Arizona Health Sciences Center, where he was chief of cardiothoracic surgery and a professor at the center’s college of medicine.

Previously, Poston taught at the University of Chicago School of Medicine, the University of Maryland and Boston University, where he was chief of cardiac surgery.

 “St. Francis is an innovative health care leader in New Jersey and we are proud to have Dr. Poston lead our cardiac surgery team,” said Vincent M. Costantino, chief administrative officer at St. Francis Medical Center. “Dr. Poston’s highly specialized expertise in robot-assisted minimally invasive cardiac surgery is a tremendous benefit to our patients. His breadth of experience enhances our array of cardiothoracic surgery.”

Minimally invasive cardiac surgery makes it possible for cardiac patients to avoid the splitting of the sternum, or breastbone, to gain access to the heart and perform operations.  Poston will use the da Vinci Surgical Robot to perform a variety of procedures at St. Francis. 

Thanks to a recently expanded partnership between St. Francis Medical Center and Camden-based Lourdes Health System, Poston joins a combined cardiothoracic surgery team which is responsible for all cardiac surgical services provided at both Our Lady of Lourdes Medical Center and St. Francis Medical Center.  

The team, under Dr. Arthur Martella, chief of cardiothoracic surgery at Our Lady of Lourdes Medical Center, includes Poston at St. Francis and Dr. Atiq Rehman at Lourdes.

“Thanks to the expertise of our cardiac surgery team, we are uniquely positioned to offer patients a regional center of cardiac excellence, offering the highest quality cardiovascular care,” said Dr. Reginald Blaber, executive director of the Lourdes Cardiovascular Institute and vice president of cardiac services.

Board-certified in surgery and cardiothoracic surgery, Poston earned his medical degree at Johns Hopkins University Medical School.  He performed his general surgery residency at the University of California and cardiothoracic residencies at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center and Stanford University School of Medicine.

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