Congress honors heart doctor DeBakey
Washington | October 19, 2007 12:01:13 AM IST
The U.S. Congress has approved issuing a Congressional Gold Medal to Michael DeBakey, a heart surgeon who pioneered multiple techniques.
The House of Representatives unanimously voted Monday to approve giving the nation's top civilian honor to the 99-year-old doctor, who performed the first successful coronary bypass in 1964, the Dallas Morning News reported Wednesday.
The Senate approved the award in March, and President George Bush is expected to sign the provision into law.
If we did not have a Congressional Gold Medal, we would have to create one to honor the honorable Dr. Michael DeBakey, said Rep. Al Green, D-Texas, one of the bill's sponsors.
His contributions to medicine and his breakthrough surgery and innovative devices have completely transformed our view of the human body and of our longevity, said another sponsor, Rep. Michael Burgess, R-Texas.
DeBakey's techniques were used to save his own life two years ago when he underwent surgery to repair a torn aorta -- a condition that was nearly always fatal before DeBakey's breakthroughs. (UPI)
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