THE FIRST CHARITY FOR THE SICK IS SCIENCE. Giancarlo Rastelli, a heart surgeon passionate about man
Curated by Giovanni Lucertini, Andrea Pace, Veronica Sandroni, Gerardo Vito lo Russo
The exhibition on the cardiac surgeon Giancarlo Rastelli was born from a group of medical students of the University of Bologna who came across different ways in his human and professional life. The dott. Rastelli (1933-1970) graduated and graduated in medicine in Parma and in 1961, for the merits acquired thanks to the publications of his early career, he won a Nato scholarship with which he went to the Mayo Clinic (Rochester , Minnesota). In a few years he became responsible for cardiovascular research and made revolutionary discoveries in the field of congenital heart disease. In particular, they remember him because of of the classification of the Ventricular Complete Channel (1966) and the Rastelli Procedure.
Gian, as his friends called him, united a profound humanity with great professionalism and capability . From a young age he was educated in the Oratory of the Jesuits of San Rocco in Parma. From charitable activities that marked his way towards patients. In 1965 He was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma which cut his life short in 1970. The years of the illness were the most productive for him and even in those moments he paid attention to the patients : “Even if you know you have a few minutes to the visit to the sick, go in, sit next to him, smile, take his hand in. Meet him as a brother of a common destiny, not as a number or as a hospital convict. ”the sick is other to serve”.
In the last months, even if he could no longer follow his little patients in the operating room because he was consumed by the disease, he accompanied them anyway helping the families to find the funds to take their children from Italy to the Mayo Clinic and host them in his home in Rochester .
The work of the exhibition, presented for the first time on 9 May 2017 at the University of Bologna, was a great opportunity for the curators to meet and communicate with classmates and teachers. After the first exhibition , was set up in various hospitals and except: the Bambino Gesù Pediatric Hospital in Rome, the University of Parma, the Institute of Pathological Anatomy of Padua and some high schools of Fidenza and Bologna. From this experience a book was published by Itaca entitled “The first charity to the sick is science Giancarlo Rastelli, a heart surgeon passionate about the humans “.