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Coalition to Prevent Deep-Vein Thrombosis (DVT) Seeks New Icon to Raise Awareness and Increase Dialogue

- Fifth- annual program to convey vital messages about reducing risks of a condition with a complication that is the most common cause of preventable hospital death -

- Coalition declares National DVT Screening Day in March -

NEW YORK, March 4 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- As part of the fifth-annual National DVT Awareness Month, the Coalition to Prevent Deep-Vein Thrombosis (DVT) encourages healthcare professionals, hospitals, communities and individuals across the country to go beyond building general awareness of signs and symptoms of DVT. The Coalition is actively involving the public and physicians to engage in a dialogue about DVT and to demonstrate their support by designing socks to showcase what DVT means to them. Through its DVT Awareness by Design program, the Coalition has reached more than 2,700 hospitals nationwide.

"Since DVT Awareness Month began five years ago, we have raised the public's understanding of the condition and its complications. In fact, a survey conducted in 2007 indicates that 40% of Americans had recently heard of DVT," said Melanie Bloom, Coalition to Prevent DVT National Patient Spokesperson, whose husband, NBC correspondent David Bloom, died of complications of DVT while covering the war in Iraq. "We have made strides in communicating that DVT can and does happen to people from all walks of life. Working together, we can bring attention to the prevailing need for reducing risks and treating DVT."

DVT Awareness by Design 2008 brings the world of fashion to local communities and encourages people across America to learn more about DVT and a potentially life threatening complication, pulmonary embolism (PE) through a nationwide challenge to design DVT-themed socks. In addition, through the Coalition's partnership with Parsons The New School for Design, one of the world's leading centers for design education, Parsons students will use DVT Awareness by Design socks as inspiration to create new leg wear designs. Leg wear designs will be unveiled in May in connection with the Parsons 2008 AAS Line Debut, an exhibit of work by graduating students. One of the student designs unveiled will be used as an inspiration for the new DVT Awareness icon.

Each year, up to two million people in the United States suffer from DVT and approximately 600,000 Americans are hospitalized for the condition and the complication PE. In fact, DVT-related PE is the most common cause of preventable hospital death. Certain individuals may be at increased risk for developing DVT, but it can occur in almost anyone.

"Several years ago, we lost faculty member and alumna Stacie Nipps to pulmonary embolism (PE) caused by DVT, so raising awareness of this disease is important to the Parsons community," said Pamela Klein, Chair, Associate in Applied Science Degree Programs, Parsons The New School for Design. "Our partnership with the Coalition reflects Parsons' long history of engaging students in projects that address social issues through design."

As part of DVT Awareness by Design, the Coalition's National Patient Spokesperson, Melanie Bloom, will be traveling across the country on a nationwide hospital - and policy-based campaign created to educate Americans and boost awareness through a hands-on design approach.

In addition, to ensure that the Coalition is also affecting changes to support early detection and diagnosis, the Coalition is declaring National DVT Screening Day this March. This serves as a call to action to challenge hospitals across the country to assess patients' risk for DVT and its primary complication, PE. Raising awareness of this condition is the first step to reducing the risk of death and disability that DVT and its complications may cause.

"The Coalition's success in raising awareness of DVT among the general public has been encouraging thus far," said Dr. Geno Merli, Coalition to Prevent DVT Steering Committee member and Chief Medical Officer, Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, Philadelphia. "Now we need to shine a spotlight on the critical need to increase awareness and action within hospitals and statehouses."

By designing a pair of socks, then wearing them proudly throughout DVT Awareness Month, participants will become models of DVT information and education, helping colleagues, patients, friends and family learn more about DVT risk reduction and treatment. Some will go a step further and take DVT awareness to the runway, showing off their designs in fun and informative local fashion shows.

The DVT Awareness by Design campaign also includes a recently launched public service announcement featuring Melanie Bloom, as well as Web and interactive components accessible at

For more information about DVT Awareness by Design, visit

About DVT and DVT Awareness Month

DVT occurs when a thrombus or blood clot forms in one of the large veins, usually in the lower limbs, leading to either partially or completely blocked circulation. A DVT blood clot has the potential to move into the lungs and block circulation to this vital organ, creating a life-threatening condition - PE - that requires immediate medical attention.

DVT Awareness Month is being sponsored by the Coalition to Prevent DVT to raise awareness of this serious medical condition among consumers, healthcare professionals, government and public health leaders. The Coalition is composed of more than 50 members from nationally known medical societies, patient advocacy groups and other public health organizations.

About the Coalition to Prevent DVT

The mission of the Coalition to Prevent DVT is to reduce the immediate and long-term dangers of DVT and PE, which together comprise one of the nation's leading causes of death. The Coalition will educate the public, healthcare professionals and policy-makers about risk factors, symptoms and signs associated with DVT, as well as identify evidence-based measures to reduce the risk of morbidity and mortality from DVT and PE. The Coalition to Prevent Deep-Vein Thrombosis is funded by sanofi-aventis U.S. LLC.

For more information, visit

About Parsons The New School for Design

Located in New York City, Parsons The New School for Design is one of the most prestigious and comprehensive colleges of art and design in the world. As a vital part of The New School, Parsons students learn to rise to the challenges of living, working, and creative decision-making in a world where human experience is increasingly designed. The Associate in Applied Science degrees in fashion, fashion marketing, graphic design and interior design are intensive one- to two-year programs where professionals can launch new careers in design.

For more information, please contact

SOURCE Coalition to Prevent Deep-Vein Thrombosis
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