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Home News Encouraging New Mexicans to Listen to Their Heart
David Morgan
575-528-5197 Office
575-649-0754 Mobile

Encouraging New Mexicans to Listen to Their Heart

February 4, 2016 - EMS Stroke/STEMI - Awareness

National Wear Red Day is the first Friday each February.  It’s a special day created by the Go Red for Women organization designed to bring attention to this staggering fact. We encourage everyone to wear red, raise their voices, know their cardiovascular risk and take action to live longer, healthier lives.It’s American Heart Month this February, and the New Mexico Department of Health is raising awareness about everyone’s risk of heart disease and stroke.

Friday, February 5 is National Wear Red Day – a special day to bring attention to some staggering facts:

  • One out of every three women in America die from heart disease and stroke—more than all cancers combined.
  • Approximately 4,000 New Mexicans die every year from heart disease and stroke. 
  • Heart disease is consistently the first or second leading cause of death among both women and men in New Mexico annually. Stroke has been the 5th leading cause.

“New Mexicans need to know certain risk factors for heart disease and stroke are increasing as people live longer with more chronic diseases,” said Department of Health Secretary Retta Ward, MPH. “We encourage everyone to know their cardiovascular risk, wear red on National Wear Red Day, raise their voices, and encourage their friends and loved ones to take action to live longer, healthier lives.”

Among rising risk factors, the number of New Mexicans with high blood pressure has steadily increased, with almost 30 percent of adults reporting they had high blood pressure in 2013. Also too many adults in New Mexico are overweight or obese, and have high blood sugar. These and other factors may contribute to higher rates of cardiovascular disease and other chronic conditions.

The Department of Health’s Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention Program is committed to helping New Mexico adults improve their cardiovascular health, through The Million Hearts® Initiative. Million Hearts® is a national effort launched by the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) in 2011. Public and private partners across the country and here in New Mexico, are dedicated to preventing 1 million heart attacks and strokes nationwide by 2017. New Mexico Million Hearts® is working with providers and health systems to support improved clinical quality care and empower communities to make healthy choices.

The New Mexico Department of Health encourages you to see your primary care provider for proper identification and management. You can control many risk factors, which may help prevent or delay heart disease such as: 

  • High blood pressure
  • Smoking and second hand smoke exposure
  • Diabetes and prediabetes
  • High cholesterol
  • Unhealthy diet
  • Physical inactivity
  • Being overweight or obese
  • Excessive alcohol use

Other factors to consider are:

  • Older age. In men, the risk for coronary heart disease increases starting at age 45. In women, the risk for coronary heart disease increases starting at age 55.
  • A family history of early coronary heart disease is a risk factor for developing coronary heart disease, specifically if a father or brother is diagnosed before age 55, or a mother or sister is diagnosed before age 65.

Please visit the Million Hearts® Initiative, National Wear Red Day, and Environmental Public Health Tracking - Heart Attacks pages to learn more.

Media Contact

We would be happy to provide additional information about this press release. Simply contact David Morgan at 575-528-5197 (Office) or 575-649-0754 (Mobile) with your questions.

Versión en Español

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Animamos a los Nuevomexicanos a que Escuchen su Corazón