Throughout the year, our blog will feature AHA volunteer stories of survival and hope. We know there are thousands of stories like these - thats why we want to say “Thanks” to all of you for giving your time and sharing your lives with us. You can’t spell CURE without U! Thank you for all you do to build healthier lives free of cardiovascular disease and stroke. YOU’RE THE CURE!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Thousands of Minnesota Women Closer to Accessing Heart Screenings

Women's Heart Health Promotion Act Passes House Committee

On Wednesday, April 1, the House Health and Human Services Policy Committee listened as experts testified about the benefits of the Women's Heart Health Promotion Act (HF 504) and screening uninsured and under-insured women for heart disease.

Natasha Fleischman, a cardiac arrest survivor and WomenHeart volunteer, shared her poignant story about experiencing sudden cardiac arrest at the age of 33. She emphasized the importance of women of all ages better understanding their risk factors and how to address them. Judine Pattinson, from the NorthPoint Health/Wellness Center in Minneapolis, shared her experience as the Director of Community Outreach whose clinic currently screens women for heart disease and the dire need to expand this program.

Because of these great testifiers and letters from grassroots advocates, the committee members agreed to consider including this important funding in the House Public Health Omnibus bill! Thanks for your help!

The Women's Heart Health Promotion Act provides funding to invest in early detection and management of risk factors by increasing funding to the state program that provides screenings for low-income and uninsured women. This program currently screens about 1,000 women. We could increase this to as many as 15,000 to truly make an impact and save lives with the Women's Heart Health Promotion Act.

Next steps: working with our Senate and House champions to ensure this funding is included in both the House and Senate Public Health Omnibus bill. We will keep you posted!

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