The American Heart Association (AHA) has recognized February as American Heart Month since President Lyndon B. Johnson’s 1964 proclamation made it an annual occurrence. At the time, more than half of all deaths in the United States were caused by cardiovascular disease. Today, that number has come down, but heart disease is still the leading cause of death in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control.
To help educate NCI and Frederick National Lab employees about the dangers of heart disease, Occupational Health Services (OHS) held its 3rd annual Healthy Heart Fair on February 16. The Recreation and Welfare Club of Frederick also attended and had a booth at the event. The fair covered physical fitness, stress, and diet, and OHS staff offered educational resources as well as an opportunity for employees to ask a healthcare provider questions. Screenings for blood pressure, body mass index, and cholesterol were available to employees.
OHS staff also supported the newest addition to Heart Health month, National Wear Red Day. The event, which is part of AHA’s “Go Red for Women” campaign, took place on February 3 and encouraged people to wear red in support of women with heart disease and stroke. Studies have shown that approximately one in every three women will be diagnosed with heart disease, so AHA hopes to educate women at an early age and save more lives.