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Front Page - Friday, February 16, 2018

MinuteClinic providing free heart-health screenings for women

As part of its support of the American Heart Association’s Go Red for Women movement, CVS Health will offer free “Know Your Numbers” heart-health screenings at its walk-in MinuteClinics on Feb. 21 and Feb. 28.

A growing number of women in the U.S. are aware of the dangers of heart disease and recognize it as their number one killer, a recent national poll commissioned by CVS Health shows, but few acknowledge their personal risk factors that contribute to heart disease.

Women can visit their local MinuteClinic on Feb. 21 and 28 and receive a heart health screening at no-cost to learn the five key personal health numbers that can help them determine their risk for heart disease: total cholesterol; HDL (good) cholesterol; blood pressure; blood sugar; and body mass index.

“The more a woman knows about cardiovascular disease, the more likely she is to be able to beat it. Eighty percent of cardiac and stroke events are preventable through education and action,” says Genia Shaver, nurse practitioner with MinuteClinic in Chattanooga.

The no-cost heart health screenings at CVS are in recognition of the American Heart Association’s Go Red for Women movement, a national campaign to raise awareness of heart disease and stroke in women and to taking control of one’s health.

“These screenings are especially important this year following the recent launch of new blood pressure guidelines from the American Heart Association to improve blood pressure control and reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease,” says Shaver. “Many patients who may not have needed intervention before may now be instructed to adopt lifestyle changes or even prescribed medication.”

High blood pressure is defined as high pressure in the arteries, which are the vessels that carry blood from the heart to the rest of the body.

Blood pressure readings are given as two numbers: The systolic blood pressure (the top number) equals the pressure in the arteries as the heart contracts. The diastolic pressure (the bottom number) is the pressure in the arteries as the heart relaxes.

In 2017, the American College of Cardiology released new guidelines for high blood pressure. Normal blood pressure is below 120/80. Blood pressure between 120/80 and 129/80 is elevated blood pressure, and a blood pressure of 130/80 or above is considered high.

Source: CVS