National Women’s Health Week May 8 – May 14 -- Focus on Older Women's Heart Health

As part of National Women’s Health Week, May 8 – May 14, 2011, a new initiative of the HHS Office of Women’s Health called, “Safety, Health for Older Women (SHOW),” will focus attention on older women’s heart health.

SHOW’s goal is to anticipate and plan for services to address health disparities of older women, an important one of which is that women experience a higher 30-day mortality rate after heart attack than men.

Here are some statistics on women’s heart attack risks from the National Women’s Health Information Center of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services:

  • A woman suffers a heart attack every 90 seconds in the United States. Every minute-and-a half, a woman dies from heart disease. It is the No. 1 cause of mortality in women. Awareness of typical symptoms of heart disease is low.
  • Women experience a significant time delay in receiving heart attack diagnosis and care, which may contribute to a higher 30-day mortality rate in women as compared with men.
  • Only 53% of women would call 911 if they thought they were having a heart attack, according to a 2009 American Heart Association survey. Yet, 79% percent of women said they would call 911 if someone else were having a heart attack.

In February 2011, the HHS Office of Women’s Health launched its newest national women’s health awareness campaign: Make the Call. Don’t miss the Beat. The campaign’s purpose is to educate women on the symptoms of a heart attack and encourages women who may be having a heart attack to call 911 for immediate, potentially life-saving care. The two-year campaign is targeted to women aged 50 and over, and their family, friends and co-workers.

The HHS Office of Women’s Health invites women and women’s organizations to join in the Make the Call. Don’t miss the Beat Campaign and help HHS spread the word to all women aged 50+ during National Women’s Health Week:

“Know the signs and symptoms of heart attack, and call 911 immediately if you or someone else is experiencing these signs.”

Attached is a catalog of materials being distributed by the HHS Office of Women’s Health for use in the “Make the Call. Don’t Miss a Beat” campaign.

For more information or to explore a role in this special National Women’s Health Week effort, please contact mary.worstell2@cms.hhs.gov or Suzanne.haynes@hhs.gov.

For more information or promotional materials, visit the website of the Make the Call. Don’t miss the Beat Campaign, or to register for National Women’s Health Week activities, please go to http://www.womenshealth.gov/whw or contact Jill Wasserman at Jill.Wasserman1@hhs.gov or 202.260.9275.

For more information on National Women’s Health Week, see our earlier post: National Women’s Health Week May 8-14, 2011 and links found there.

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