AstraZeneca - AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation awards more than $2.6 million in grants to improve cardiovascular health

Monday, 2 February 2015

The AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation’s Connections for Cardiovascular HealthSM program is awarding more than $2.6 million in grants to 13 organizations working to improve cardiovascular health in their communities.

The grants are being awarded to nonprofit organizations across the country – from East Coast to West and in between – to support targeted approaches to improving cardiovascular health at the local level, using everything from telemedicine to mobile health units. The programs reach out to people in the community through schools, churches, grocery stores and more, and partner them with community health workers, health promoters or personal coaches to encourage healthy behaviors.

“The organizations receiving Connections for Cardiovascular HealthSM grants have demonstrated a strong commitment to helping people in their communities reduce their risk for cardiovascular disease, which is a leading cause of death in our nation,” said James W. Blasetto, MD, MPH, FACC, chairman of the AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation. “Through innovative grassroots programs, they will work to help people take control of their heart health.”

Since 2010, the Connections for Cardiovascular HealthSM program has awarded more than $17 million in grants to 43 organizations nationwide. More than 40,000 people have participated in a variety of programs funded through Connections for Cardiovascular HealthSM and, as a result, are making healthier food choices and exercising more. They are reducing their body mass index, lowering their blood pressure and hemoglobin A1C levels and learning more about nutrition and how to lower their cardiovascular risk factors.

Organizations can learn more and apply online for a Connections for Cardiovascular HealthSMgrant at www.astrazeneca-us.com/foundation. Applications must be submitted online no later than 5 p.m. EST on Feb. 26, 2015.

This year’s Connections for Cardiovascular HealthSM awardees are:

  • Ashland-Boyd County Health Department in Ashland, Ky.; $223,000: “Appalachian Partnership for Positive Living and Eating (A.P.P.L.E.)” aims to promote healthy childhood and youth development and control obesity among 750 children and their caregivers through a voluntary, community-based case management program in Boyd and Greenup, Ky.
  • Catherine’s Health Center in Grand Rapids, Mich.; $160,916: “Heart Smart Connections” aims to build on the successful “Live Heart Smart” program (identifying risk factors and using targeted interventions to encourage and support healthy lifestyle choices) and improve the cardiovascular health of 2,000 low-income community residents by assisting with accessing services including health insurance via the Affordable Care Act.
  • Elkhorn Logan Valley Public Health Department in Wisner, Neb.; $250,000:“Operation Heart to Heart” aims to reduce the incidence of cardiovascular disease through education and health screening for agricultural laborers and rural citizens in Nebraska’s Burt, Cuming, Madison and Stanton Counties by increasing knowledge of cardiovascular health, reducing blood pressure and weight and improving cardiovascular biometric measures.
  • Manna Ministries Inc. in Picayune, Miss.; $152,763: “Heart 2 Heart Initiative” aims to engage the community and collaborate in raising awareness about cardiovascular disease, while improving the quality of care and patient education through community outreach in delivery of screening, patient education, self-management, treatment, heart-healthy lifestyle support and education for the communities of southern Mississippi and Louisiana.
  • North Georgia HealthCare Center, Inc. in Ringgold, Ga.; $204,435: “POWER (Patient Outreach with Educational Resources)” aims to provide testing and education to help prevent, diagnose and treat diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity and heart disease among underserved residents in North Georgia HealthCare Center’s area. The program brings these free services directly to participants in their own communities.
  • OASIS Institute in St. Louis, Mo.; $223,501: “Get Pumped!” aims to improve the health behaviors of adults living in nine high-risk ZIP codes in the St. Louis area who have at least one risk factor for cardiovascular disease (hypertension, physical inactivity or diabetes) by providing health screenings, education and exercise programs at community locations using mobile health and evidence-based programs.
  • Presence Covenant Medical Center in Urbana, Ill.; $168,492: “The Cardiovascular Awareness and Risk Reduction Program” aims to engage the community and Presence Covenant Medical Center's community health partners to improve the quality of cardiovascular care in the greater Champaign County area through screening, education, treatment and support of healthy lifestyles, targeting uninsured and underinsured individuals.
  • Saint Agnes Hospital Foundation, Inc. in Baltimore, Md.; $215,647: “Heart-to-Heart” aims to empower its faith-based partners to effectively reduce cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors in communities with severe healthcare disparities. Through an evidence-based CVD intervention program, St. Agnes is reaching African American women at high risk of CVD, providing screenings and assessments and establishing systems such as support networks, peer community health workers and resource development that will ultimately make “Heart-to-Heart” self-sustaining within the community.
  • HSHS St. John’s Hospital in Springfield, Ill.; $205,564: “Launching a ‘Tele-Heart Pathway’ in Disadvantaged Illinois Communities: Providing health literacy and personalized interventions to fragile and at-risk heart failure patients in their homes to support self-management, independence and optimal health” aims to address the Healthy People 2020 objective Heart Disease and Stroke-24, by identifying and partnering with heart failure patients and their caregivers in 13 disadvantaged communities using daily telehealth remote monitoring, support, education and evidence-based medication adjustments.
  • St. Mary’s Health Wagon in Wise, Va.; $250,000: “Heart Health 1, 2, 3. Comprehensive Cardiovascular Disease Initiative for Diabetes Mellitus, Metabolic Syndrome and Obesity” aims to identify, minimize and prevent cardiovascular disease in individuals with these conditions and Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver disease (NAFLD) through the use of health education, screening and medication management, using a holistic medical approach and evidence-based practices.
  • Sundance Research Institute, Inc. in Wind River Indian Reservation, Wyo.; $197,952: “Honoring Your Heart on the Wind River Indian Reservation” aims to build on and expand a coordinated clinical-community health education program to increase cardiovascular health knowledge and reduce cardiovascular disease risk factors among American Indian adults and families with children through a two-part program consisting of classes offered concurrently with a 12-week Lifestyle Balance Program focusing on physical activity and healthy diet.
  • West Virginia Health Right, Inc. in Charleston, W. Va.; $191,028: “SCALE (Sustainable Changes and Lifestyle Enhancement)” aims to achieve - through personal coaching, group support, nutritional education and improved diet coupled with exercise - sustained weight loss in 50 obese patients to improve their health status and reduce cardiovascular risk factors.
  • Westminster Free Clinic in Thousand Oaks, Calif.; $192,994: “Corazones Sanos para Mi Familia (Healthy Hearts for My Family)” aims to improve the health outcomes of low-income, uninsured Latinos suffering from or at high risk for heart disease and/or diabetes through culturally competent, patient-centered services including: early detection through community outreach and health screenings; access to preventive care and medical specialists; healthy lifestyle support, such as cooking demonstrations and physical activity; and empowerment through improvement of eating environments.

2014 Grant Award Total: $2,636,292

About 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 HealthSM was launched in 2010 through a charitable contribution of $25 million from AstraZeneca.

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