Cardiac surgeon named to new Chair in Surgical Innovation at Western University

Dr. Bob Kiaii has been appointed as the inaugural Raymond and Margaret Elliott Chair in Surgical Innovation, effective July 1, 2013.

 June 07, 2013

 June 07, 2013

Western University’s Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry is pleased to announce that Dr. Bob Kiaii has been appointed as the inaugural Raymond and Margaret Elliott Chair in Surgical Innovation, effective July 1, 2013. Dr. Kiaii is an Associate Professor in the Department of Surgery and Chair/ Chief of the Division of Cardiac Surgery at Schulich Medicine & Dentistry, as well as the Director of the Minimally Invasive Robotic Cardiac Surgery Program at the London Health Sciences Centre.

The Endowed Chair was founded in 2011 with a gift of $1.5 million from Raymond and Margaret Elliott which was matched with funds from Western University. The Chair positions the Department of Surgery at the forefront of surgical care, education and research. As Chair, Dr. Kiaii’s role will include building teams in advancing technology changes in surgery; contributing to the advancement of simulation and simulation-based training at Western; participating in the establishment of the Biomedical Devices Institute in London; and fostering relationships with the medical device industry.

“It is an honour and privilege for me to be elected as the Raymond and Margaret Elliott Chair in Surgical Innovation,” says Dr. Kiaii. “This opportunity will further enable us to develop and pioneer new innovative surgical procedures that will further enhance Western University as a leader in the field of innovation and as a centre of excellence for patient care.”

Dr. Kiaii completed his MD at Western in 1992, his General Surgery residency at the University of Calgary, and his Cardiac Surgery residency at Western. He was recruited to the Department of Surgery at Western and London Health Sciences Centre  in 2003.

“Dr. Kiaii is an internationally acclaimed clinician and researcher in minimally invasive cardiac surgery, and has frequently served as an expert in cardiac care for provincial governing bodies in Ontario,” says Dr. Michael Strong, Dean, Schulich Medicine & Dentistry. “He has a proven track record for surgical innovations, and we are very pleased that he will take on this new leadership role.”

Dr. Kiaii  performed the first North American simultaneous integrated coronary artery revascularization in 2004; the world’s first aortic valve bypass using the Correx apical conduit; the world’s first repair of a perforation of the right atrium using the da Vinci® Robotic System in 2011; the first Canadian robotic-assisted multi-vessel coronary artery bypass; the world’s first robotic-assisted left atrial appendage ligation for atrial fibrillation;  and was the first to broadcast a real-time cardiac surgical procedure to surgeons in Colombia in 2011. Dr. Kiaii has performed the largest series of simultaneous integrated coronary artery revascularizations in the world.  He was also a founding member of Canadian Surgical Advanced Technology and Robotics (CSTAR).

Media contact:  Kathy Wallis, Media Relations Officer, Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry, Western University, 519-661-2111 ext. 81136,


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