Alison Meadows, MD

Cardiology, San Francisco

Adult Congenital Heart Disease Care

“It has been a privilege to develop a program that helps so many people, that gives them hope and guidance in living their lives as richly as possible.”

In prior generations, children with congenital heart disease rarely survived to reach adulthood; today, up to 90% of them will. But the number of physicians trained to care for this new population of patients has not grown accordingly, leaving many Adult Congenital Heart Disease (ACHD) patients across the country struggling to receive adequate care.

Dr. Alison Meadows has devoted her career to caring for this vulnerable patient population, a mission that led her to join KP San Francisco in 2010. Hired simply to provide office consultations for adults with congenital heart disease, Dr. Meadows instead created a world class ACHD program that provides comprehensive care for 13,000 patients across Northern California – the largest program of its kind in the country.

One of few formally trained ACHD specialists in the U.S., Dr. Meadows took charge of teaching her colleagues how to care for this high-risk population. She established a network of ACHD champions so that patients receive expert care no matter where they are seen. By leveraging our own providers and support staff, Dr. Meadows freed herself to focus on the most complex patients while reducing travel needs for others.

Her tireless educational efforts laid the groundwork to internalize ACHD care at every level. Surgeries are now performed in-house, as are cardiac MRIs, which are the gold standard for monitoring ACHD patients. Our high-risk obstetric group helps patients conceive and carry their pregnancies to term.

“At Kaiser Permanente every physician is committed to providing high quality care, which makes it easy to partner across specialties,” says Dr. Meadows. “We couldn’t have built this comprehensive of a program anywhere else.”

Nor could KP Northern California have created our second-to-none Adult Congenital Heart Disease program without Dr. Meadows’ unrivaled expertise, unceasing dedication, and relentless passion for patient care.