Yoshifumi Naka, M.D., Ph.D.
Cardiac Surgery
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Yoshifumi Naka, M.D., Ph.D.

Cardiac Surgery

Profile Photo of Yoshifumi Naka, M.D., Ph.D.
Accepts New Patients
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Gender: Male
Language: English


Personal Statement

I decided to be a cardiac surgeon when I met one of the pioneer cardiac surgeons in Japan during the first year of medical school who later became my mentor.  And I moved to PhD course after graduating from Osaka University Medical School to study transplantation biology since he wanted to resume cardiac transplantation after decades of silence.  The study during the PhD course led to the opportunity for me to continue studying transplantation biology at Columbia University.  Since then I had stayed at Columbia University and NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital (NYP), Columbia University Irving Medical Center till I moved to Weil Cornell Medicine in Feb 2021.  I am excited to be an official member of Weill Cornell Medicine where I have been serving as the bi-campus Director of Mechanical Circulatory Support program since 2008. I have been involved in the care of extremely sick patients and enjoyed seeing their recovery from advanced cardiac surgeries including but not limited to heart transplantation and implantation of artificial heart devices.  Now I am extremely excited to start the heart transplantation program at the Weill Cornell campus, and carry the responsibility of leading NYP's entire heart failure surgery activities.  My goal is to push the heart failure program at NYP to the top international level with regard to not only its volume but it's quality. 

Specialties and Expertise


  • Cardiac Surgery
  • Heart Surgery
  • Cardiothoracic Surgery


  • Heart Transplantation
  • Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting
  • Aortic Valve Replacement
  • MVR (Mitral Valve Replacement)
  • Cardiac Tumor
  • Aortic Root Replacement
  • Aortic Aneurysm Repair
  • Valve Replacement, Aortic and Mitral
  • Heart Valve Surgery
  • Open Heart Surgery
  • Mitral Valve Disease
  • MVR (Mitral Valve Repair)
  • Mitral Valve Repair (Complex)
  • Mitral Valvuloplasty
  • Ventricular Assist Device
  • Repair, Tricuspid Valve
  • Repair, Tricuspid Valve, Open
  • Aortic Valve Surgery
  • Aortic Valve Repair
  • Heart Valve Repair
  • Annuloplasty, Tricuspid Valve
  • Excision, Myxoma
  • Aortic and Mitral Valve Surgery
  • Cardiac Bypass Surgery
  • Cardiac Valve Surgery
  • Pericardial Disease
  • ECMO Procedure


Dr. Yoshifumi Naka is a Professor at Weill Cornell Medicine and the Surgical Director of Heart Failure, Heart Transplantation, and Mechanical Circulatory Support programs at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital. Dr. Naka is an internationally renowned heart transplant surgeon and a pioneer in mechanical assist therapy for heart failure. Under his leadership, The Heart Transplantation and Mechanical Circulatory Support Programs at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, Columbia University Medical Center have earned international recognition for their contributions in developing and testing new cardiac devices and in training cardiothoracic surgeons around the world. The heart transplant program is the largest U.S. heart transplant program by volume.

Dr. Naka completed his medical education at Osaka University Medical School (MD) and Osaka University Graduate School of Medicine (PhD).  He completed his residency in general, and cardiovascular surgery at Osaka Police Hospital, an affiliated hospital of Osaka University. He did a post-doctoral research fellowship at the department of physiology, Columbia University, and a foreign clinical fellowship at the division of cardiothoracic surgery, NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, Columbia University Medical Center.  He stayed at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, Columbia University Medical Center for 22 years before moving to Weill Cornell Medicine. 

Dr. Naka has authored more than 400 articles published in peer reviewed medical journals, 22 book chapters and two books.  He has been invited to present his work at national and international meetings.  He is a member of the American Heart Association, American Association for Thoracic Surgery, Society of Thoracic Surgeons, Society of University Surgeons, American Society of Transplant Surgeons, International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation, and ASAIO.  He is committed to training the next generation of heart failure surgeons and has taught numerous surgeons under his supervision. A Majority of them became chiefs of cardiac surgery divisions or directors of heart transplantation programs.  He has served as a member of Annals of Thoracic Surgery Editorial Board, ad hoc reviewer for numerous medical journals,  a member of American Association for Thoracic Surgery Graham Travel Fellowship Committee and Leadership member of Society of Thoracic Surgeons

In his leisure time, Dr. Naka enjoys golfing.


Honors and Awards

Honors and Awards

Young Investigators Award. Japanese Association for Thoracic Surgery, 1988

Cournand and Comroe Young Investigator Prize, 68th Annual Meeting of American Heart Association, 1995

Award for Achievement in Cardiovascular Science and Medicine, American Heart Association, NY chapter, 2010

Thoracic Surgery Residents Association (TSRA) Socrates award, 2016

Top Doctors
Yoshifumi Naka, M.D., Ph.D. has been named one of America's Top Doctors by Castle Connolly. Across 65 medical specialties, 404 Weill Cornell Medicine physicians have been awarded this designation.

Learn more


Clinical and Academic Positions

  • Adjunct Professor of Surgery - Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons
  • Attending Cardiothoracic Surgeon - NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital
  • Professor of Cardiothoracic Surgery - Weill Cornell Medical College, Cornell University
  • Stephen and Suzanne Weiss Professor in Cardiothoracic Surgery #1 - Weill Cornell Medical College, Cornell University

Education and Training

  • Ph.D., Osaka University Medical School (Japan), 1988
  • B.M., Osaka University Medical School (Japan), 1984


Insurance Plans Accepted

The following represents most of the managed care plans accepted by this doctor. If your insurance carrier does not appear here please contact the doctor’s office as they may have individual contracts not included on this site.

* indicates this doctor is no longer accepting new patients with this insurance plan.

  • AETNA - Medicare
  • Aetna Weill Cornell Employee Managed Care Plan
  • Aetna Weill Cornell Employee PPO Plan
  • Aetna-NYP - EPO/POS
  • Affinity Access
  • Affinity Health Plan
  • AgeWell New York
  • Amida Care
  • Emblem Select Care
  • Empire Blue Cross/Blue Shield - Blue Access
  • Empire Blue Cross/Blue Shield - Blue Connection
  • Empire Blue Cross/Blue Shield - EPO
  • Empire Blue Cross/Blue Shield - HMO
  • Empire Blue Cross/Blue Shield - Mediblue (Senior)
  • Empire Blue Cross/Blue Shield - PPO
  • Empire Blue Cross/Blue Shield HealthPlus
  • Empire Blue Cross/Blue Shield HealthPlus - CHP
  • Fidelis Care
  • GHI - CBP
  • Health First
  • Health Insurance Plan of NY (HIP)
  • Health Insurance Plan of NY (HIP) - Medicaid
  • Health Insurance Plan of NY (HIP) - Medicare
  • Medicaid
  • Medicare
  • Oxford Health Plans - Freedom
  • Oxford Health Plans - Liberty
  • Oxford Health Plans - Medicare Advantage
  • Oxford Health Plans - Metro/Core/Charter
  • Rockefeller University - Trustmark
  • United Empire
  • United Healthcare
  • United Healthcare - Community Plan
  • United Healthcare - Medicare
  • United Healthcare Compass
  • VNSNY CHOICE - Medicare
  • WellCare of NY
  • WorldWide Medical

Locations and Appointments

News and Media


External Relationships

External Relationships

Relationships and collaborations with for-profit and not-for profit organizations are of vital importance to our faculty because these exchanges of scientific information foster innovation. As experts in their fields, WCM physicians and scientists are sought after by many organizations to consult and educate. WCM and its faculty make this information available to the public, thus creating a transparent environment.

No External Relationships Reported