AstraZeneca - Connections for Cardiovascular Health announces $195,809 grant to Christiana Care Health System

Tuesday, 5 February 2013

The AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation program Connections for Cardiovascular HealthSMtoday announced a grant of $195,809 to the Christiana Care Health System in support of the Cardiovascular Outreach Prevention Program (C.O.P.P.). This is the second consecutive year in which Christiana Care Health System has received funding from the AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation, totaling $348,463.

C.O.P.P. is targeted toward underserved, low-income African-American teens and adult women. The goal of the program is to engage teens to increase their knowledge and confidence in their ability to make healthy lifestyle changes, as well as to teach them skills to improve the heart health of their mother or other important adult female in their lives.

“This program features two distinct advantages,” said Dr. Omar Khan, Medical Director of Community Health and Preventive Medicine at the Eugene duPont Preventive Medicine & Rehabilitation Center at Christiana Care Health System. “The biggest advantage is intervention – we are reaching these teenagers while they are still exhibiting some healthy behaviors and before they have developed unhealthy habits. The second advantage is that today’s teenage generation is very adept at networking, meaning they have the opportunity to promote the message of good health to both their peers and their families.”

AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation’s new grant will support C.O.P.P. at the school-based health centers of four New Castle County high schools – Howard High School of Technology in Wilmington, Hodgson Vocational Technical High School in Newark, Christiana High School in Newark, and William Penn High School in New Castle. The program is run by Christiana Care’s Department of Family and Community Medicine – which operates 14 
school-based health centers – and Christiana Care’s Eugene duPont Preventive Medicine & Rehabilitation Institute, which offers a range of programs designed to promote health, prevent disease and minimize disability.

During the first year of C.O.P.P:

  • 107 teenagers were educated on the risk factors and warning signs of heart disease and equipped with tools to coach a significant adult in their life to adopt healthy lifestyle habits.
  • Adult participants on average doubled the number of days they engaged in 30 minutes or more of physical activity, from only two days a week at the beginning of the program to four days a week at the end.
  • A survey conducted at the end of the program found that 97 percent of the adults and 85 percent of the teenagers learned new information about how to prevent heart disease.

“Cardiovascular disease continues to be the nation’s number one killer, which is why we must work to decrease the risks of this devastating disease," said James W. Blasetto, M.D., MPH, FACC chairman of the AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation. "The AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation is proud to provide funding to innovative, grassroots programs like Christiana Care Health System’s C.O.P.P, which work to help prevent and control the effects of cardiovascular disease in their community."

The Connections for Cardiovascular Health program awards grants of $150,000 and up to US-based non-profit organizations that are doing innovative work in the field of cardiovascular health. This year, the Foundation has awarded over $4.4 million in grants to 22 organizations. Since its inception, the Foundation has awarded nearly $11 million across the United States to help improve cardiovascular health.

Organizations can learn more and apply online for a Foundation grant at Applications must be submitted online no later than 5 p.m. EST on Feb. 28, 2013.

About Christiana Care Health System

Christiana Care Health System, headquartered in Wilmington, Delaware, is one of the country's largest health care providers, ranking 21st in the nation for hospital admissions.

Christiana Care is a major teaching hospital with two campuses and more than 250 Medical-Dental residents and fellows. Christiana Care is recognized as a regional center for excellence in cardiology, cancer and women's health services. The system is home to Delaware's only Level I trauma center, the only center of its kind between Philadelphia and Baltimore. Christiana Care also features a Level 3 neonatal intensive care unit, the only delivering hospital in the state to offer this level of care for newborns.

A not-for-profit, non-sectarian health system, Christiana Care includes two hospitals with more than 1,100 patient beds, a home health care service, preventive medicine, rehabilitation services, a network of primary care physicians and an extensive range of outpatient services.

With more than 10,400 employees, Christiana Care is the largest private employer in Delaware and the 10th largest employer in the Philadelphia region. In fiscal year 2011, Christiana Care had more than $2.1 billion in total patient revenue and provided the community with approximately $28.1 million in charity care (at cost).

About the AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation

Established in 1993, the AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation is a Delaware not-for-profit corporation and a 501(c)(3) entity organized for charitable purposes including to promote public awareness of healthcare issues, to promote public education of medical knowledge and to support or contribute to charitable and qualified exempt organizations consistent with its charitable purpose. Connections for Cardiovascular Health was launched in 2010 through a charitable contribution of $25 million from AstraZeneca.

Media Inquiries

AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation Media Line 302-885-2677
Hiran Ratnayake, Christiana Care ealth System 302-327-3327,
Lauren Wilson, Colonial School District 302-323-2753,