President's Message Archive

June 2015

Congratulations on yet another successful VASA Practicum! I would like to thank everyone who participated in the 5th Vascular Access Practicum held at Duke University from May 14th to 16th, 2015. It was a roaring success and I congratulate the organizing committee led by Dr. Jeffrey Lawson. Jeff and his team did a marvelous job planning this event. Thank you to the VASA office for providing oversight and logistical support.

For those who did not have the opportunity to attend, we had one full day of hands on activities that covered every facet of vascular access for physicians and allied health personnel. This was followed by a stimulating interaction with several patients on dialysis. The evening dinner was delightful, complete with a visit to downtown Durham and the ball park! The following day was filled with a good mixture of didactic lectures and talks on important practical topics. This meeting is indeed the only one of its kind that provides practical hands-on training for a wide array of vascular access personnel. Needless to say, such a program could never become a reality without the magnanimous support from our industry partners.

I am excited to relate some other activities in which VASA is involved. VASA members are playing active roles in most dialysis access related endeavors in the US and internationally. Kidney Health Initiative (KHI) which was started by the American Society of Nephrology is a public-private partnership of all stakeholders in the field of nephrology. A working group within KHI is actively evaluating endpoints in dialysis access related trials. VASA is also playing an active role in the initiative to revise and revisit KDOQI guidelines on vascular access, an effort led by the National Kidney Foundation (NKF).  On international grounds, VASA has a memorandum of understanding to further relationships that are mutually beneficial to advance the field of vascular access with leading multidisciplinary vascular access societies worldwide such as the Vascular Access Society of Europe (VAS) and the Japanese Society of Dialysis Access (JSDA). Two JSDA exchange delegates attended the VASA practicum at Duke.

Keeping with the vision of representing vascular access in the Americas, VASA is growing its presence in the continent. VASA participated in the first vascular access symposium held under the auspices of the VIII International Surgical Course organized by Dr. Hector Orozco. The vascular access focus of the program was coordinated by two of VASA’s active members, Dr. Carlos Hinojosa from Mexico City and Dr. Jaime Velez from Columbia.

VASA is already preparing for the upcoming symposium in 2016. It will be held in the beautiful and vibrant city of Chicago on May 12th -14th, 2016.  The program committee under the leadership of Dr. Jack Work has already gotten to work.  I am sure it will be yet another remarkable conference with educational activities geared toward allied health personnel, physicians and surgeons.

Needless to say, I am truly excited about all these far-reaching activities. The society continues to strive to represent vascular access in the Americas. Your valuable support in increasing our visibility is of great importance. I encourage each and every VASA member to reach out to your colleagues and strive to increase VASA membership and the diversity it represents.  

I look forward to meeting you in Chicago!!

Surendra Shenoy, MD, PhD
VASA President

May 2014

Greetings from Dallas! And thanks to everyone who made the XIV Biennial Dialysis Access Symposium a success. We had a great meeting with 24 faculty lectures and 39 abstract presentations. This was also the ten-year anniversary of VASA.

VASA XIV Biennial Symposium

For those of you who were unable to join us, Dr. Fred Schild, the first president of the organization, delivered a short presentation on the history of VASA. We had a variety of faculty presentations that provided state of the art information on contemporary topics in dialysis access. We ended the first day of the conference with a video session, which as always was the highlight of the day.

I assumed responsibility as president of the organization on the second day. It was my pleasure to honor Dr. Mitchell Henry and present him with a plaque in recognition of his service as one of the founding members of VASA and later as President of the society for the years 2010-2012. Mitch exits the VASA Board after serving for 2 years as the immediate past president.

Dr. Jeffrey Lawson delivered the Mitchell Henry lecture on the origin and use of bioengineered vascular conduits with insights into preliminary outcomes.  This is yet another breakthrough in the field of vascular surgery that has its origin in the field of vascular access.

The best resident abstract award for this symposium was shared by Angela Gucwa, MD, Greenville Health System, and John Yerxa, Duke University. A close third was Emma Aitken, MD, National Health Service, UK. You will soon find more details of the meeting on our website.

The conference overall was a great success and attended by national and international delegates. We had a wonderful time in Dallas at the Gaylord Texan resort. We recognize the excellent organization and planning by our new management organization - Agentis and its staff. The next Dialysis Access Practicum is going to be held at Duke University; notably, 10 years ago, this was the birthplace of the Practicum. I hope you will seize this opportunity and join us at this exciting event in May 2015. More information will be forthcoming soon.

Immediately following the conclusion of the symposium, I conferred with the leadership of the society at a strategic planning meeting. We readdressed our focus, vision and mission as the only multidisciplinary organization representing the field of vascular access. You will continue to hear about our efforts in my next message.

Thanks for your support. I intend to send you monthly updates to keep you abreast of our activities. I always welcome your suggestions and comments at

Surendra Shenoy, MD, PhD
VASA President