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Mega Events in September, Including Chicago Event This Sat./Sun., Allow Heart Health Campaign to Reach Tens of Thousands of Hispanics During Cholesterol Awareness Month
Date:9/12/2007

CHICAGO, Sept. 12 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A series of mega events in Hispanic communities around the country will showcase the 2007 Heart Health Campaign during September, Cholesterol Awareness Month. The next major Heart Health event in Chicago will be this Saturday and Sunday, September 15-16 between 12:00 and 6:00 pm. The Festival de la Villita will feature this urgent Cholesterol Screening program, which will take place at the Health Supersite at 26th and Kostner in the Little Village neighborhood of Chicago.

The National Alliance for Hispanic Health is in the midst of its 2007 Heart Health Campaign which is bringing life-saving health education information and cholesterol screenings to communities across the nation with a particular focus on four major cities: Chicago, Illinois; Miami, Florida; New York, New York; and Houston, Texas. More than 1,000 people have already had their cholesterol screened and prominent elected officials have participated in screening events, helping to bring the message to their communities.

Thousands of people will participate in Hispanic community events this month where a team of health professionals will be on-hand to provide important information about heart health and provide thousands of free cholesterol screenings on-location.

Community Urgency

According to studies published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Hispanics are the group least likely to have been screened for high cholesterol, with between one-third and one-half of all Hispanics not screened within the past 5 years. Of those found to have high cholesterol in clinical research, only half were aware they had high cholesterol. High cholesterol does not have physical symptoms, a fact that makes this campaign's public education and screening events so important.

"The free cholesterol screenings we have brought to communities have saved lives," said Dr. Jane L. Delgado, President and CEO of the National Alliance for Hispanic Health and author of SALUD -- A Latina's Guide to Total Health. "We have an urgent message, one that has already reached millions of Hispanics through our work this summer and we are committed to doing even more to deliver screening and education as part of Cholesterol Awareness Month."

Important Timing for This Campaign

Cholesterol Awareness Month, which coincides with Hispanic Heritage Month (September 15 - October 15) was designated by the National Institutes of Health's National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute and provides news media with a unique opportunity to share information about hearth health, including the importance of cholesterol screenings.

The Alliance effort is part of the Alliance's Para un corazon saludable (translation: For a healthy heart), a new educational initiative funded by an educational grant from AstraZeneca aimed at improving awareness and understanding of heart disease risk factors, including high cholesterol, among Hispanics.

As part of the screening and educational campaign, Alliance organizations have been jointly conducting a major four-city survey on health issues to gauge additional community challenges. The results of the survey will be released in November at a meeting of leaders in Hispanic cardiology in Orlando, Florida.

"The more we can understand the health challenges Hispanic communities face the better equipped our doctors and other professionals in the health care system will be to provide appropriate care and advice to our patients," said Jack Lewin, M.D., CEO of the American College of Cardiology.

Contacting the Alliance

Given our community's high use of mobile technologies, the Alliance's Heart Health Campaign is also reaching Hispanic families through an innovative two-part campaign that will publicize both a new text message campaign (send the message "CORAZON" or "HEART" to the text message number 30644) and the 1-866-SU-FAMILIA Family Health Helpline.

The national helpline (1-866-783-2645 or 1-866-SU-FAMILIA) offers free, reliable and confidential health information in Spanish and English. The Su Familia Helpline is available from 9:00 am to 6:00 pm, Eastern Daylight Time, Monday through Friday.

Callers speak with bilingual and culturally proficient health promotion advisors. Callers can receive basic health information and consumer-friendly fact sheets on cholesterol, heart health, and a range of health issues. Also, by providing their zip code, callers can receive referrals to one of over 26,000 local health providers, including community and migrant health centers.

About the National Alliance for Hispanic Health

The National Alliance for Hispanic Health is the nation's foremost source of information and trusted advocate for the health of Hispanics in the United States. The Alliance represents thousands of Hispanic health providers across the nation providing services to more than 14 million each year, making a daily difference in the lives of Hispanic communities and families. For more information, visit http://www.hispanichealth.org or call the Alliance's Su Familia National Hispanic Family Health Helpline at 1-866-783-2645.

About Chicago Hispanic Health Coalition

The Coalition's mission is to promote healthy behavior and prevent chronic disease. The Chicago Hispanic Health Coalition advances health education and disease prevention in the Hispanic community. Coalition members are drawn from local agencies, community based organizations, universities, churches and regional offices of national health organizations. There are currently more than 600 health and service agencies actively participating. For more information visit http://www.chicagohispanichealthcoalition.org.

About the Hispanic Federation

The Hispanic Federation is a service-oriented membership organization of 94 Latino health and human service agencies dedicated to promote the social, political and economic well-being of the Latino community. The Federation provides a wide-range of services geared towards strengthening Hispanic families and supporting Latino institutions serving over two million Hispanics living in the Northeast region. For more information, please visit http://www.hispanicfederation.org.

About the Houston Hispanic Health Coalition (HHC)

The Hispanic Health Coalition is a non-profit organization established in 1996. Operating under a fifteen-member volunteer board, HHC carries out its mission by supporting those core goals and activities determined to be essential to the success and growth of the organization. Their primary mission is to promote the health and well being of Houston's Hispanic and Latino community. We pursue this mission through the assessment of community health and social needs, education and community advocacy on behalf of and with our Hispanic community. For more information, please visit http://www.hispanic-health.org.

About Little Havana Activities and Nutrition Centers

Founded in 1972, the Little Havana Activities and Nutrition Centers of Dade County, Inc. has grown into one of the area's largest providers of social services to socially isolated and economically disadvantaged persons in the South Florida area. Today, the Little Havana Activities and Nutrition Centers operate not only a new, spacious and functional building, but also 21 multi- service centers with congregate meals program in Miami, Miami Beach, Hialeah and other unincorporated Dade County area, which serve over 54,000 people annually. For more information visit http://www.lhanc.org.

About AstraZeneca

AstraZeneca is one of the world's leading pharmaceutical companies. For nearly three decades, AstraZeneca has offered drug assistance programs side by side with its medicines, and over the past five years, has provided over $3 billion in savings to more than 1 million patients throughout the US and Puerto Rico. AstraZeneca has been named one of the "100 Best Companies for Working Mothers" by Working Mother magazine and is the only large pharmaceutical company named to FORTUNE magazine's 2007 list of "100 Best Companies to Work For." In 2006, for the fifth consecutive year, Science magazine named AstraZeneca a "Top Employer" on its ranking of the world's most respected biopharmaceutical employers. For more information about AstraZeneca, please visit: http://www.astrazeneca-us.com.


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SOURCE National Alliance for Hispanic Health
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