AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation awards nearly $1 million to 10 innovative heart health programs & announces open call for applications

The AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation’s Connections for Cardiovascular HealthSM (CCH) program is awarding nearly $1 million in grants to 10 organizations working to help improve cardiovascular health in their communities and is also announcing the availability of additional grants in 2018.  

The organizations receiving grants this year will work to help improve the heart health of people in their communities through innovative programs for at-risk groups that tailor activities and information to the needs and culture of the people they are serving. Many of these programs use community health workers, provide peer-to-peer support, or adapt curriculum, materials and activities based on the needs of participants. The organizations also will draw on past experiences to share lessons learned from their programs through activities such as publications, presentations and program toolkits to assist other nonprofit organizations interested in helping prevent and manage cardiovascular disease in their communities to do the same across the country.

James W. Blasetto, MD, MPH, FACC, chairman of the AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation, said: “We’re committed to supporting organizations that are working in innovative ways to address cardiovascular disease at the community-level. The funding not only allows the programs to help make a difference in their own communities, but provides an opportunity for organizations to share their expertise with others, expanding their reach and impact.” 

Organizations interested in applying for funding for the 2018 CCH program can submit applications during the AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation’s open call for applications beginning at 9:00 a.m. on Monday, Feb. 5, through Wednesday, Feb. 28 at 5 p.m. EST. For more information on the Foundation and how to apply for a grant, please visit:

Since 2010, the Connections for Cardiovascular HealthSM program has awarded nearly $22 million in grants to 49 organizations nationwide. These grant recipients are addressing urgent, unmet needs in their communities to help improve heart health. More than 1.6 million people have been reached through activities such as a health fairs, screenings, educational materials and workshops, and over 56,000 of these people had their heart health progress tracked through a variety of programs funded through Connections for Cardiovascular HealthSM. As a result, program participants are making lifestyle changes and helping to improve their risk factors for cardiovascular disease such as losing weight, lowering blood pressure, eating healthier and exercising more, to name a few.

2017 Connections for Cardiovascular HealthSM Awardees
This year’s Connections for Cardiovascular HealthSM awardees are:

Catherine’s Health Center, Grand Rapids, MI -- $100,000
“Healthy Heart Team / Whole Hearts” aims to combine outreach, education and screening with team-based, patient-centered care and on-site counseling, treatment and support for underlying mental health issues in order to help low-income, underserved individuals overcome complex obstacles and achieve better cardiovascular and overall health.

Chesapeake Charities, Inc., Stevensville, MD -- $100,000
“Partnering for Youth Cardio-Fit Project” aims to provide participants with the opportunity to learn the value of a personal, lifelong commitment to fitness and nutrition via Partnering for Youth’s After School Program by increasing students’ physical activity and knowledge of cardiovascular health. The program also aims to provide other youth programs the opportunity to teach cardiovascular health using Cardio-Fit Project’s unique model and resources.

City Health Works, New York City, NY -- $100,000
“Extending care for hypertension, congestive heart failure and diabetes beyond the confines of the healthcare system via neighborhood-based coaching integrated with primary care” aims to expand a novel, evidence- and community-based health operation that is integrated with primary care providers and links with local services to sustainably improve hypertension and congestive heart failure control, reduce cardiovascular disease-related health disparities and demonstrate that the model is replicable and impactful in diverse settings.

Mercy Hospital Foundation, Inc., Buffalo, NY -- $100,000
“Heart Smart for Life” aims to improve the underlying causes of heart disease among a racially and ethnically diverse, underserved population of very low income people and to help them overcome barriers to health that exist in the community. The program uses a multi-disciplinary team approach and partners with a mobile clinic and community center to provide screenings and cardiovascular health, nutrition and behavioral health education, and to promote exercise and appropriate use of medications.

Mid Valley Family YMCA, Van Nuys, CA -- $99,980
“Activate Your Heart/Active Su Corazon” aims to improve knowledge about cardiovascular health and develop healthy behavior through exercise, grocery store tours, cooking demonstrations and clinical screenings, complementing these efforts by training staff at two neighboring branches and expanding community impact through exposure to 4,000 new households.

North Georgia HealthCare Center, Inc., Ringgold, GA -- $93,900
“POWER – Patient Outreach With Educational Resources” aims to provide testing, education and resources to prevent, diagnose and treat high blood pressure, body mass index-related health issues, obesity and heart disease among the most underserved and vulnerable residents in its community.

Sankofa Community Development Corporation, New Orleans, LA -- $100,000
“Healthy HeartBeats” aims to identify atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease risk and high blood pressure in individuals, with the main goal of improving their intake of fruits and vegetables by strengthening awareness of cardiovascular health and ways to prevent and manage chronic disease through community-based interventions.

St. Mary’s Health Wagon, Wise, VA -- $100,000
“Expansion of Heart Health 1, 2, 3. Comprehensive Cardiovascular Disease Initiative for Diabetes Mellitus, Metabolic Syndrome, and Obesity” aims to identify individuals with metabolic syndrome, diagnosed as dysmetabolic syndrome x, diabetes mellitus and Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease and correlate the risk for cardiovascular disease related to these diseases, ultimately minimizing and preventing the risk of a cardiac event through the use of health education, screening and medication management, and evidence-based practices, such as the Diabetes Prevention Program.

West Virginia Health Right, Inc., Charleston, WV -- $100,000
“SCALE (Sustainable Change and Lifestyle Enhancement)” aims to achieve sustained weight loss in 100 obese patients through personal coaching, group support, nutritional education, improved diet and regular exercise, to improve their health status and reduce their cardiovascular risk factors.

Westminster Free Clinic, Thousand Oaks, CA -- $100,000
“Corazones Sanos (Healthy Hearts) Program” aims to reach indigent, underserved Latino communities with heart healthy services that support the whole person, are culturally competent, create healthy environments in communities of color and engage youth of the low-income community in promoting heart health and serving their neighbors.

2017 Grant Award Total: $993,880

About AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation
Established in 1993, the AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation is a Delaware not-for-profit nonstock 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 contribute to charitable and qualified exempt organizations consistent with its charitable purpose.

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