Robyn J. Barst Pediatric Research and Mentoring Fund

Robyn Barst, MDFamily, friends and the entire pulmonary hypertension community mourn the loss of a pre-eminent leader in the field of pediatric PH, Robyn J. Barst, M.D., on April 19, 2013.

For two-and-a-half decades, Dr. Robyn Barst established herself as a leader in the field by providing state-of-the-art medical care for children and adults with PH, founding the New York-Presbyterian PH Center, conducting groundbreaking research in the field, mentoring numerous clinicians, and serving in PHA leadership through the Board of Trustees and Scientific Leadership Council.

Dr. Barst was both a pioneer in the field and a hero to many for her treatment of the disease and her compassion towards her patients. Her legacy continues to shape the medical profession and touch lives.

Celebrate the memory of Dr. Barst with your donation to PHA

“Robyn would have wanted people not to mourn her but continue her fight against PH. That’s why supporting PHA’s research and education to end this terrible disease is so important." – Sam Barst, Robyn’s husband

Dr. Barst’s family has requested contributions to PHA’s Dr. Robyn J. Barst Pediatric Research and Mentoring Fund for Pulmonary Hypertension at PHA. Memorial gifts to this fund will carry on Dr. Barst’s commitment to advancing the field of pediatric PH. It is a mission she not only lived throughout her lifetime — she invested in its future by donating the generous gift that founded this important fund. We invite you strengthen PHA’s ability to educate and train even more pediatric PH specialists in Dr. Barst’s memory and learn more about the work of Barst Fund Award Winners.

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Why research in pediatric pulmonary hypertension matters

Three decades ago, pediatric cardiologist Dr. Robyn Barst and other pioneer researchers helped to move pulmonary hypertension toward its first treatment in 1996. Before the FDA approved that first drug, survivability was 2.8 years for 50% of patients. Research has led to now 14 treatments for pulmonary hypertension. Unfortunately, there is still no approved treatment for children with PH.

During the past decade of extraordinary research and clinical activity, the number of physicians treating this disease has increased from about 100 to an estimated 12,000. Driven by research, this medical field is in rapid formation.

In this video, hear what Dr. Barst and others in the field have to say about the importance of pediatric research.

Why PHA?

PHA is committed to placing the issue of pediatric PH squarely at the forefront of the PH research agenda. PHA has a proven track record in supporting research through four leveraged partnerships which, to date, have enabled the organization to commit more than $15 million to PH research. Moreover, through PHA's Scientific Leadership Council — a body of 28 world-renowned PH researchers and clinicians — PHA has the structure in place to establish and oversee an effective pediatric PH research program. The SLC's Research Committee will play a critical role in the development, management, and oversight the pediatric research program.

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The National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD) awarded PHA the Abbey S. Meyers Leadership Award in 2012 for outstanding service to PHA members in advocacy, education and other key areas.