Veli-Pekka Harjola is an Associate Chief Physician and cardiologist at the Medical ICU, Division of Emergency Care, Helsinki University Central Hospital, Finland. Dr Harjola has been an investigator in several heart failure trials, including eight studies on both intravenous and oral levosimendan, including LIDO, SURVIVE and PERSIST. He is the chairman of the heart failure working group of the Finnish Cardiac Society, a member of the ESC's working group on acute cardiac care and a member of the European Heart Failure Association. His research interests include the management and prognostic factors of acute heart failure. Dr Harjola is the primary investigator of the FINN-AKVA National Acute Heart Failure Study, which includes 620 patients from 14 Finnish hospitals. He is also a member of the expert committee of the Euro Heart Failure Survey II.