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Posted by By Kathleen Bennett February 23, 2024 on Mar 3rd 2024

Forever Marilyn goes red to raise awareness for American Heart Month

Forever Marilyn goes red to raise awareness for American Heart Month
February is American Heart Month. And the American Heart Association is urging all Coachella Valley families to learn the lifesaving skill of CPR. Join the Nation of Lifesavers during American Heart Month and go from bystander to lifesaver. With more than 350,0000 people experiencing cardiac arrests outside of a hospital, including 23,000 children, CPR is a critical skill that kids as young as 9 years old can learn.

National Wear Red Day is the icon day of the American Heart Association. It’s when the nation comes together, igniting a wave of red from coast to coast. From landmarks to news anchors, neighborhoods to online communities, this annual groundswell unites millions of people for a common goal: the eradication of heart disease and stroke.

This year, the Forever Marilyn statue in downtown Palm Springs went red at sundown on Feb. 2 in honor of National Wear Red Day. The Palm Springs High School cheerleaders were in attendance and cheered for the attendees, and Dr. Edith Jones-Poland from Desert Oasis Healthcare spoke on behalf of the American Heart Association for media interviews with local TV stations KESQ and NBC.

Why Go Red?

Awareness is critical. Everyone needs to know that cardiovascular disease is the No. 1 killer of women. Nearly 45% of women over age 20 are living with some form of cardiovascular disease. Heart disease is the No. 1 killer of new moms. Women are less likely than men to receive bystander CPR and are less likely to survive an out-of-hospital sudden cardiac arrest. As of 2020, only 38% of cardiovascular clinical research trial participants were women. Know your numbers. Key personal health numbers that help determine risk for heart disease include total cholesterol, blood pressure, blood sugar and body mass index.

The Association is committed to turning a nation of bystanders into lifesavers. The multi-year initiative will ensure teens and adults can learn about CPR and AED use, share that knowledge with friends and family and engage employers, policymakers, philanthropists and others to create support for a nation of lifesavers. The long-term goal, to ensure that in the face of a cardiac emergency, everyone, everywhere is prepared and empowered to perform CPR and become a vital link in the chain of survival.

“If you are called to respond in a cardiac emergency, knowing CPR may save the life of someone you love,” said American Heart Association Orange County/Inland Empire and Coachella Valley board president Pranav M. Patel, M.D., Chief, Division of Cardiology, UC Irvine. “We are committed to extending the chain of survival in the Coachella Valley through education because the power to save a life is in each of our hands.

When the American Heart Association was founded in 1924, heart disease was considered a death sentence. The best option for many people, they were told, was bed rest. There was no treatment, no hope. But the AHA’s founders didn’t believe that. They felt that if we only understood heart disease, treatments would follow. And they were right.

Fast-forward to today and there are not only treatments, but proven ways to lower your risk for heart disease as well as stroke. Through scientific research and the power of millions of volunteers and supporters, we have a deeper understanding of the many factors that contribute to these diseases: from traditional medical issues such has high blood pressure to societal problems, structural racism and discrimination.