Community leaders to co-chair American Heart Association’s initiative to improve women’s heart health
The American Heart Association, a global force for healthier lives for all, announces Nneka Chiazor, Vice President of Government & Public Affairs for Cox Communications and Dana Beckton, Chief Diversity Officer for Sentara Healthcare as the community volunteer co-chairs of the 2022-2023 Hampton Roads Go Red for Women movement. Go Red for Women is a worldwide initiative of the American Heart Association designed to increase women’s heart health awareness and serve as a catalyst for change to improve the lives of women locally, nationally, and globally.
Cardiovascular disease is the No. 1 killer of women in the United States, claiming more lives each year than all forms of cancer combined. Cardiovascular disease continues to be a woman’s greatest health threat, taking the life of one in every three women. As an area with the largest cities in the state based on population and size, women are at major risk. Across the region, at least 30% of all women have at least one risk factor for heart disease.
“Having the right resources and access to affordable technology can make all the difference in living a healthier life,” said Chiazor. “That’s why we’re so proud to join hands with Sentara on this Go Red campaign. Even if only one person is motivated to take steps that result in a healthier life, this cause is worth it.”
The primary focus of this year’s Hampton Roads Go Red for Women campaign is inclusivity of education, research, quality of care and access for all women. The disparities and increasing experiences that women face in the community, related to lack of concern and acknowledgement or dismissive behaviors associated with medical visits or emergencies related to cardiovascular disease, stroke, the risk factors or underlying conditions limits the opportunity to live a healthier lifestyle.
“Too many of us have women in our lives who have been touched by health conditions, that are either undiagnosed or misdiagnosed—which unfortunately leads to critical or fatal outcomes,” said Beckton. “Personally, Go Red is an opportunity to educate and empower women to get the health care they need and deserve.”
“I’m so excited about our incoming chairs. The funds we’ll raise together will help to advance education and research that will help save the lives of moms, wives, daughters, sisters and all the women we know and love in Hampton Roads. I look forward to what more we can accomplish together,” said MeShall Hills, Executive Director of the American Heart Association Hampton Roads.
Returning for a third year is the Woman of Impact initiative. Women are nominated by their peers to participate. The nominees will recruit champions from their networks to form a fundraising team and have a direct impact on women’s health and the Go Red for Women vision of creating a passionate community dedicated to addressing health issues unique to women. The nominee whose team makes the largest impact in each market will be named the local Woman of Impact Award Winner.
This year’s Go Red for Women movement and its local achievements will be celebrated on February 3, 2023, National Wear Red Day at the Go Red for Women Luncheon, sponsored by Cox Communications and Sentara Healthcare.
About Go Red for Women®
The American Heart Association’s signature initiative, Go Red for Women®, is a comprehensive platform designed to increase women’s heart health awareness and serve as a catalyst for change to improve the lives of women globally. While nearly 80 percent of cardiac events can be prevented, cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in women, claiming the lives of 1 in 3 women. For 18 years, Go Red for Women has encouraged awareness. The movement harnesses the energy, passion and power of women to band together and collectively wipe out heart disease. It challenges them to know their risk for heart disease and take action to reduce their personal risk. It also gives them tools they need to lead a heart healthy life. The Go Red for Women movement is nationally sponsored by CVS Health, with additional support from national cause supporters. For more information, please visit GoRedforWomen.org or call 1-800-AHA-USA1 (242-8721).
About the American Heart Association
The American Heart Association is devoted to saving people from heart disease and stroke – the two leading causes of death in the world. We team with millions of volunteers to fund innovative research, fight for stronger public health policies and provide lifesaving tools and information to prevent and treat these diseases. The Dallas-based association is the nation’s oldest and largest voluntary organization dedicated to fighting heart disease and stroke. To learn more or to get involved, call 1-800-AHA-USA1, visit heart.org or call any of our offices around the country. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.
Communications Director, Hampton Roads, VA
Encouraging people to live fierce and be relentlesses forces for a world of longer, healthier lives.