In alphabetical order by last name
Ahmed Al Odeh

Senior Perfusonist, Sheikh Khalifa Medical City

Rosalie Bernardo

Rosalie Bernardo

ECMO Coordinator

Employed at Sheikh Khalifa Medical City since 2007 and working in the Cardiac and General PICU as charge nurse.

An active member of the SKMC ECMO team since 3 years back with numerous ECMO runs. Currently co-coordinator with Jennifer Maralit with ECMO team expanding with new specialists being trained. Previously worked at the Philippine Heart Center pediatric ICU.

Christophe Calesse

Christophe Calesse

Organizing Adviser and Consultant Marketing

Christophe Calesse graduated in 1989 from Ecole Nationale Supérieure de Techniques Avancées, in Paris. He then joined the industrial world first in the field of high tech research & development engineering, before moving on to Program Management, where he developed an extensive experience over the last two decades, both with Governmental and non-Governmental customers, partners and suppliers.

He currently holds a senior management position within the UAE branch of a major European company in the field of Aerospace and Defence.

With a keen interest for medicine, he graciously joined the ELSO SWAC 2016 Organizing Committee, providing support and advice on organizational matters on a voluntary basis.

Balazs Hetharsi

Balazs Hetharsi

Consultant Pediatric Cardiac Intensivist
Sheikh Khalifa Medical City managed by Cleveland Clinic
Pediatric Cardiac IC

Dr. Hetharsi received his MD at Semmelweis Medical University in Budapest, Hungary. He accomplished the curriculum of Pediatrics in 1992. Later on he took his board exam on Anesthesia and Intensive Care Medicine in 1999 also in Hungary.

First he worked as a general pediatrician for several years before joining to the general pediatric anesthesia-intensive care department of a general children hospital in Budapest/Hungary. Few years later his interest turned to the pediatric cardiac anesthesia-intensive care field and took up a new job in the Hungarian Pediatric Heart Center where he worked as cardiac anesthetist-intensivist until 2008.

He joined SKMC in 2008 to an already established new tertiary-care pediatric cardiac service for the UAE. Since 2007 - the start of this program - there have been over 2500 pediatric cardiac surgeries performed with outstanding results. Many of new surgical modalities (e.g. extracorporeal life support, complex neonatal open-heart surgery, hybrid surgery, modified Norwood procedure, Ross operation, double-switch operation etc.) have been introduced to SKMC’s Pediatric Cardiac Services for the first time in the UAE.. The Pediatric Cardiac Program has now been recognized as the national provider for congenital heart disease from neonatal to adolescent (GUCH) age. SEHA, Abu Dhabi Health Services Company has elected SKMC Pediatric Cardiac Surgery as one of its eight “Center of Excellence” programs. Dr. Hetharsi has been working in the Pediatric Cardiac ICU as a team member in a fruitful collaboration with the whole pediatric cardiac multidisciplinary team.

Tomas Krivosik

Consultant, CPICU, Sheikh Khalifa Medical City

Jennifer Maralit

Jennifer Maralit

ECMO Coordinator
Charge Nurse
Pediatric Cardiac Educator
PALS Instructor
PFCCS Instructor
ECMO Educator (SKMC)


Bachelor of Science in Nursing, Southern Luzon Polytechnic University

1995 Masters in Nursing, University of the Philippines


Certified ICU nurse by American Critical Care Nurse Association

2009 Certified Neonatal ICU Nurse by Indiana University

2010 Certified ECMO Specialist by Glennfield Hospital; Leicester UK

2010 Certification in Maquet ECMO Training Netherlands, 2014

Malaika Mendonca

Maria Mendonca

Division Chief Paediatric Cardiac Critical Care
ECMO Program Director
Sheikh Khalifa Medical City, managed by Cleveland Clinic – Abu Dhabi – UAE

Dr Malaika Mendonca graduated from the Essen Medical School University (Universitäts Klinik Essen) in 1996. During her residency training for anaesthesia and critical care, she encountered her first practical experiences in the field of Extracorporeal Life Support (ECLS), while rotating through the ICU.

She acquired International experience and knowledge through electives and observership in the Sick Kids Hospital, Toronto, Canada, and the Boston Children’s Hospital, Harvard University, Boston, USA

After completing her Board Certification (Facharzt) in 2001, she joined the Ludwig Maximilian University Hospital in Munich to lead the Cardiac Paediatric Critical Care Unit, and in this capacity had major exposure to ECMO, ventricular assist devices and heart transplant.

Always interested in new perspectives and challenges, she was offered in 2004 to support the creation of the Paediatric Critical Care Unit in Sheikh Khalifa Medical City (SKMC) in Abu Dhabi. After an initial set up phase limited to 6 beds, the Unit expanded to the current 27 beds, and serves the whole UAE. Dr Malaika Mendonca is the Division Chief of the Cardiac PICU since 2010.

As ECMO Program Director, she established the foundation and growth of the program so that SKMC is now the reference centre in the UAE and leading centre in the Gulf region.

Her dedication to education, teaching, knowledge exchange and update has made her a frequently invited speaker in local and international conferences, and Dr Malaika Mendonca is delighted to have been given the honour to organize and chair the 3rd SWAC ELSO Conference

Kerstin Mutze

Kerstin Mutze

Consultant, CPICU, Sheikh Khalifa Medical City

Dr. Kerstin Mutze is a German board certified Anaesthesiologist with subspecialty board certifications in Critical Care, Emergency Medicine and Special Pain therapy. She graduated from Humboldt University of Berlin in 1990.

She was assigned to different ICU’s and was able to gain some special experience in weaning off long term ventilated patients.

As her special interest was always heart diseases in infants and children, she joined the German Pediatric Heart Centre in St. Augustin to expand her knowledge in pediatric cardiac anaesthesia and pediatric cardiac intensive care, which she gained during her training at the university hospital Charite’.

Before working in Abu Dhabi she went back to Berlin to build up pediatric anaesthesia in a tertiary hospital with a perinatal centre including a multidisciplinary concept for postsurgical analgesic therapy in children. At the same time she was entrusted with the management of the operating theatre, consisting of 15 operating rooms and 3 external clinics. In Mai 2007 she joined SKMC as pediatric cardiac intensivist to support the beginning of the first pediatric cardiac program in UAE. That provides support to all congenital cardiac conditions, both pre-and postsurgery including ECMO.

Judit Till

Consultant, CPICU, Sheikh Khalifa Medical City

Eberhard Westweber

Chief Perfusonist, Sheikh Khalifa Medical City

In alphabetical order by last name