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American Heart Month Puts Spotlight on Heart Healthy Habits

February 17, 2021

During American Heart Month, HAP joins organizations across the commonwealth drawing attention to the importance of heart health and the need to improve health outcomes for all Pennsylvanians.  

This year, American Heart Month has another layer of significance, as researchers begin to study the way COVID-19 impacts heart health and the cardiovascular system. President Joe Biden issued a proclamation this month emphasizing the importance of American Heart Month.

“During American Heart Month, we recommit to fighting this disease by promoting better health, wellness, and prevention awareness in our communities,” President Biden said.

Heart health begins at an early age and continues throughout the lifespan. The American Heart Association recommends the following heart healthy tips:

  • Choose a healthy eating plan featuring foods that are lower in saturated and trans fats and sodium
  • Build healthy exercise habits into your weekly schedule
  • Always be aware of the warning signs for heart attacks and strokes
  • Don’t smoke and avoid secondhand smoke
  • Know your family history
  • Establish a relationship with a physician and receive regular wellness exams

This month, the federal Office of Minority Health (OMH) has highlighted the way COVID-19 has impacted African Americans and other minority communities, especially those with underlying conditions, such as uncontrolled high blood pressure. OMH and the Health Resources and Services Administration’s Bureau of Primary Health Care have launched an initiative to improve blood pressure control among the nation’s most vulnerable populations, including racial and ethnic minority groups.

HAP joins organizations across the nation recognizing American Heart Month. Pennsylvania’s hospitals and health systems are proud to play an integral role to promote heart healthy habits and address disparities within their communities. During 2021, HAP and Pennsylvania’s hospitals are committed to continuing this important work.

Additional resources from the American Heart Association and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are available online.