Dr. Ashwani Bedi, Cardiac Electrophysiologist, the Heart Group ; the Heroes

Article excerpt

Waits tend be long outside of Dr. Ashwani Bedi's office at The Heart Group. The 43-year-old physician from India never hurries when speaking with patients, and if his next one must read a magazine a few extra minutes, so be it. "No matter how far behind we are, he devotes time and interest to each patient. It doesn't do much for our schedule," said Nina Rooney, a nurse at The Heart Group. "They may have to wait. But it's going to be worth their wait."

Bedi, a specialist in both cardiology and cardiac electrophysiology, wants to know his patients as individuals and not as medical charts.

"When you're talking to patients, it's very important that you listen to them. Sometimes it's very easy to make a decision (and say) this is what we're going to do," he said.

"But when you listen to them, you can find out things that are going on with a patient, and every one is different. It's not guidleline-based therapy. You don't have to treat everybody the same... I'm a good listener with my patients, and sometimes that takes some more time."

Bedi only gets to do outpatient appointments at his Newburgh office two days a week. Other days, he's either performing procedures or traveling to Olney, Ill., where The Heart Group has an outreach clinic.

The native of Chandigarh, India, said he had family friends growing up who were physicians, and he became interested in the craft. Bedi first considered joining India's military after high school. He enrolled in medical school there instead.

After graduating, he came to the United States in 1997 for residency at New York Methodist

Hospital in Brooklyn. His cardiac residency was at the University of Missouri Hospital in Columbia, followed by a fellowship in electrophysiology at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. Electrophysiology is the study of heart rhythms.

Bedi and his family came to the Evansville area seven years ago. His daughter, an Indiana University student, and his son, who is in middle school, are never far from his mind.

"Even though he's that busy and in a busy practice, his priority is still his family and children," said Rooney, who was among those who nominated Bedi for a Health Care Heroes award. …