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MFM Specialists R. Phillips Heine, MD, & Geeta Swamy, MD, Appointed To Prestigious Leadership Positions

Friday, August 10, 2018
heine swamy

Duke Ob/Gyn is proud to announce two faculty appointments to prestigious national/international leadership organizations with missions that strive for improvements in women’s health. R. Phillips Heine, MD, Vice Chair of Obstetrics and Division Chief - Maternal Fetal Medicine, has been appointed the 22nd president of the Infectious Diseases Society for Obstetrics and Gynecology (IDSOG). Geeta Swamy, MD, Vice Chair for Research and Faculty Development, has been appointed to the FDA Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee for a three-year term.

Dr. Heine will serve as President of IDSOG, which is committed to scientific exchange, education and leadership in infectious diseases in women, and was created in 1973 to bring together professionals in the field of obstetrics and gynecology who are interested in the scientific study of infectious diseases in women.

The activities of the organization are conducted for scientific purposes, for the advancement and promulgation of knowledge regarding the area of infectious diseases and for the facilitation of personal relationships among investigators in the subject of infectious diseases related to obstetrics and gynecology, according to its website.

There are over 120 members of the IDSOG from the United States, Canada, Europe, and Australia who are well represented by academic senior faculty and research scientists in leadership positions at local, regional, and national levels. Members of IDSOG have published more than 5,000 scientific articles, as well as numerous authoritative texts and chapters that serve to influence the national standard of care.

Dr. Heine’s current clinical and research interests focus on the role of infection and inflammation in preterm birth and other adverse pregnancy outcomes. He also has a specific interest in the use of immunizations in pregnancy for both the prevention of disease in the mother and the newborn.

He has presented information at the IDSOG annual scientific meeting documenting the benefits of routine penicillin allergy testing in obstetrics, and his research on the Zika virus has been an invaluable resource for the care of obstetric patients in regard to assessment of Zika.

 “Obstetric providers should continue to assess pregnant patients’ risk status for potential Zika virus exposure and council them to avoid travel to at risk areas. However, due to decreasing Zika prevalence, and potential issues with false positive IgM testing, it is no longer recommended that pregnant women with exposure, but with no symptoms of disease, be screened with IgM serology,” stated Dr. Heine, who played a significant role in creation of this new guideline.

Dr. Heine also serves on the PDC Board of Managers, which is comprised of chairs of the clinical departments, at-large members from each clinical department and two community practices, the PDC president and executive director.

Dr. Geeta Swamy is an internationally renowned Maternal Fetal Medicine specialist and in her new appointment as part of the the FDA Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee, she will review and recommend vaccines and biologics in infectious diseases.

“To date there, has never been Ob/Gyn representation on the committee, so I'm excited to represent Duke and ACOG as a representative on the committee,” said Swamy.

Dr. Swamy also serves as Senior Associate Dean for Regulatory Oversight & Research Initiatives in Clinical Research in the Duke School of Medicine. In this role, she provides strategic vision and oversight of the regulatory components of the Duke Human Research Protection Program and assists with the development of broad-based research initiatives and other activities to support Duke’s growing clinical research enterprise. Her responsibilities include oversight of the Duke University Health System (DUHS) Institutional Review Board (IRB), Research Conflict of Interest (COI), Regulatory Affairs, and oversight of strategic research programs including the Duke Health Data & Specimen Repository and E-Consent initiatives.

Her most recent research findings have been published in the New England Journal of Medicine, findings from which noted labor induction at 39 weeks reduced cesarean rate for low-risk, first-time mothers (ARRIVE trial -A Randomized Trial of Induction Versus Expectant Management):  Labor Induction versus Expectant Management in Low-Risk Nulliparous Women.