Missouri Baptist Sullivan Hospital Cardiac Rehab department is celebrating American Heart Month by having weekly activities in its unit throughout February to promote heart health.
Cardiovascular disease is the leading global cause of death with more than 17.9 million deaths annually. That number is expected to increase to more than 23.6 million by 2030. In the United States alone, 2,200 individuals die of cardiovascular disease each day, an average of 1 death every 40 seconds.
American Heart Month is intended to raise awareness about cardiovascular disease and lifestyle changes that can improve heart health and lower risk. There are things that can’t be changed like age and family history, but even modest changes in diet and lifestyle can lower risk by as much as 80 percent.
MBSH Cardiac Rehab encouraged all employees to wear red on dress down Fridays throughout the Month. During the first week of February, patients in their department were given the opportunity to guess the number of conversation hearts in a decorated jar. The contest ended on February 8 with Barb Heinle having the closest guess without exceeding the total. She guessed 719 hearts for the jar that contained 756 candy hearts. In addition to winning the jar of candy, Barb received a MBSH back-pack and a MBSH fleece jacket.
Patient Nutrition Day was held on Friday, February 15. Rehab patients were treated with various refreshments and fruit and cheese trays. Nutritional advice was shared with the patients. Bottled water and apples were given to the patients on February 22 to conclude the promotions for the month.
“We hope that our Heart Month celebrations helped increase our patients awareness of how important a healthy lifestyle is to promote heart health,” commented Mike Whitaker, Outpatient Diagnostic Services Manager.
The feature photo shows Denise Ettinger, RN and Mike Whitaker, Outpatient Diagnostic Services Manager with Barb Heinle, the winner of the "Guess the Candy in the Jar contest"