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Statement by American Heart Association President Timothy Gardner, M.D. on Congressional Approval of Economic Stimulus Package
Date:2/16/2009

WASHINGTON, Feb. 16 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The following is a statement by American Heart Association President Timothy Gardner, M.D. on congressional approval of the economic stimulus package:

Key provisions in the economic stimulus package are a win-win for Americans as they struggle to balance healthcare challenges with increased financial burdens. Americans suffering from chronic disease are facing harsh realities in this economic crisis -- see a doctor or pay for food and shelter. We're pleased that this legislation will help alleviate some of their financial concerns and provide resources to help prevent and treat heart disease, stroke and other life-threatening illnesses. Several provisions supported by the American Heart Association will significantly improve quality of care, including those that advance medical research at the National Institutes of Health, promote health information technology to improve healthcare quality, support state-based prevention programs and allows for the renovation of school facilities to address our nation's childhood obesity epidemic. With more Americans losing jobs and health benefits as a result of the economic downturn, we're also encouraged that the unemployed will receive assistance for extended health insurance.

Among the provisions supported by the American Heart Association:

Funding for the National Institutes of Health

The $10 billion investment is a significant down payment on President Obama's pledge to double science funding over the next decade. We thank Senators Specter and Harkin and the conferees for recognizing that NIH funding can help cure the economy as well as disease.

Funding for Health Information Technology

Our broken health care system desperately needs the technology and clinical-decision making tools to prevent medical errors, reduce health disparities and improve quality o
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SOURCE American Heart Association
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