I hope you had a wonderful holiday break and your new year is off to a great start. We jumped back in to one of our busiest, and exciting, times at the AHA/ASA and across the Mid-Atlantic Affiliate. The 2015 AHA Guidelines Update for CPR & ECC were released, and are based on the most current and comprehensive review of resuscitation science, systems, protocols, and education. Also, the American Heart Association’s 2014-2015 Annual Report is now available online. National Wear Red Day is Friday, February 5, and we hope you’ll share our online toolkit, www.GoRedForWomen.org/WearRedDay, with businesses, schools, places of worship, clubs… anyone in your community who might #GoRed with us and help spread awareness about heart disease and stroke.
We have exciting news in the area of cardiovascular research! First, a $2 billion dollar increase in National Institutes of Health (NIH) research funding was passed by Congress mid-December. In addition, you may have seen Nancy’s update on our groundbreaking $50 million research collaboration between AHA and Verily (formerly Google Life Sciences). We have now closed a commitment of $25 million from AstraZeneca to provide additional significant support to this research investment, in the hopes of accelerating a cure for coronary heart disease and saving many more lives. We have implemented a broad scale marketing and advertising campaign under the brand “One Brave Idea,” encouraging innovators, scientists, thought leaders and researchers to submit their vision and team to our Web site to compete for the research grant.
Check out the cover story in the newest issue of Stroke Connection featuring volunteers from the GWR, Mark and Brenda Moore. A stroke nearly took Mark Moore’s life, but his wife Brenda knew the questions to ask to get the care he needed. Read their full story There Are No Accidents, Even Cerebrovascular Ones in the recent issue of Stroke Connection digital edition or on the web.
Last month, the CDC released its report of 2014 mortality data to show that even though there is a decline in deaths, heart disease remains the No. 1 killer by absolute numbers and age-adjusted death rate. Stroke remains No. 5 by both measures. From the most-recent data available in the American Heart Association’s 2016 Heart Disease and Stroke Statistics Update , one of every three deaths in the U.S. in 2013 were from heart disease, stroke and other cardiovascular diseases. Here are some additional statistics:
- cardiovascular diseases claimed 801,000 lives;
- heart disease killed more than 370,000 people;
- stroke killed nearly 129,000 people;
- about 116,000 of the 750,000 people in the U.S. who had a heart attack died;
- about 795,000 people had a stroke, the leading preventable cause of disability;
- among African-Americans adults, 48 percent of women and 46 percent of men have some form of cardiovascular disease; and
- African-Americans have nearly twice the risk for a first-ever stroke than whites.
As you can see, there is still much work to do, people to reach and lives to save. As we embark on a time of transformational growth and significant community impact throughout the MAA, I want to thank you for your many efforts to advance our mission.
Our mission is to be a relentless force for a world of longer, healthier lives. For nearly 100 years, we’ve been fighting heart disease and stroke, striving to save and improve lives. Heart disease is the No. 1 killer worldwide, and stroke ranks second globally. Even when those conditions don’t result in death, they cause disability and diminish quality of life. We want to see a world free of cardiovascular diseases and stroke.