In January, we added world-renowned and locally loved cardiac surgeon, J. Michael Smith, MD, a pioneer in the development of robotic cardiac surgery, to The Christ Hospital team. Dr. Smith is credited with bringing robotic-assisted surgery to Greater Cincinnati in 2003, and, on top of personally performing about 3,000 robotic heart surgeries, has trained surgeons from some of the top hospitals in the United States, Europe and Australia.

Advancements in robotic-assisted surgeries have a direct impact on patient wellbeing. The months that accompany traditional open-heart surgeries are not so much about the heart itself recovering, but rather the body recovering from a sternum incision. "Overall, with robotic surgeries you have better outcomes. They are less invasive, which means less bleeding and faster recovery time for the patient," says Dr. Smith. "As we advance to do more surgical procedures robotically, we can provide better results for our patients."