Good Samaritan to Celebrate American Heart Month

Good Samaritan is dedicating the month of February to your heart. Heart health is an important aspect of a person’s overall well being and should be a top priority. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), heart disease kills about 610,000 people in the United States each year; amounting to one in every four deaths in this country. It is also the leading cause of death in men and women. Knowing your risk for heart disease is the first step in keeping your heart healthy. That is why Good Samaritan is providing free screenings and heart health information throughout the month of February.

Good Samaritan will offer free stroke screenings on Tuesday, February 19 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Utilizing a scorecard, an individual’s risk for stroke is formulated by the results of different tests. These tests include: blood pressure, body mass index (BMI), lipid profile, carotid artery screening, atrial fibrillation and glucose screening. Educators and registered nurses will also be providing valuable information and hand-outs on different ways to decrease your risk of stroke.

“We are pleased to offer stroke screenings again this year as we celebrate heart month,” said Julie Thomas, Director of the Dayson Heart Center at Good Samaritan. “Stroke is one of the leading causes of death and 80% of strokes are preventable. Taking time to get screened can help you identify risk factors that may lead to a stroke, and ultimately save your life.”

Appointments are required for the screenings. Those interested in making an appointment can call Community Health at 812-885-8753.

In addition to the free stroke screenings, the Community Health Department is also offering multiple free lipid profile screenings throughout the month of February. To see the dates and times, visit Good Samaritan’s website at and click on the events calendar.

The Dayson Heart Center at Good Samaritan is also raising heart health awareness by celebrating National Cardiac Rehabilitation Week from February 11-17.

Cardiac rehabilitation aides in the reduction of potentially devastating effects of heart disease and improves the quality of life for patients and their families. Cardiac Rehabilitation Week, initiated by the American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation (AACVPR), coincides with both Valentine’s Day and American Heart Month in an effort to draw greater national attention to heart health. This year’s theme, “Do Your Part for Your Heart,” honors the patients, families, and health care professionals who are dedicated to cardiac rehabilitation as a vehicle for a healthy lifestyle.

“Many people think of cardiac rehab as just an exercise program. Although exercise is very important, there are other key factors that play important roles on your road to recovery,”said Hilary Cecil, MS, Cardiac Rehab Exercise Specialist. According to Cecil, cardiac rehab has three equally important parts:

Exercise Counseling and Training: Exercise gets your entire cardiovascular system working and gets your heart pumping. You will learn ways that are safe for you to get your body moving.

Education for Heart Healthy Living: How can you manage your risk factors? How can you quit smoking? How can you make heart healthy lifestyle changes? Educating yourself about heart disease and the changes needed are key elements to your recovery.

Counseling to Reduce Stress: Stress can put added strain on your heart. This part of Cardiac Rehab helps identify and tackle everyday sources of stress.

“You don't need to face heart disease alone. Cardiac rehab is a team effort and together we can help you take charge of the choices, lifestyle changes and habits that affect your heart”, she added.

In celebration of National Heart Month, Good Samaritan’s Dayson Heart Center will be providing free heart month pins to all hospital employees attached to a card with information on the signs and symptoms of a heart attack. Dr. Abigail Qin-Nelson, Good Samaritan’s newest interventional cardiologist, will also be out in the community sharing heart health information to the public. She will be presenting at “Dine With a Doc in Lawrenceville, Illinois on February 1 and in Evansville, Indiana on February 22. Her program is titled, “Atherosclerosis and Your Heart.” She will also be the walk leader during the February 2 Walk With a Doc at Vincennes University’s Student Recreation Center Track from 9 to 10 a.m.

Another way Good Samaritan is promoting heart health is by participating in National Wear Red Day®. On Friday, February 1, Good Samaritan employees will be wearing their red in support of raising awareness of women and heart disease.

The American Heart Association created National Wear Red Day in 2004 with a mission to dismiss myths and raise awareness of heart disease and stroke as the number one killer of women. To support heart health in women locally, Good Samaritan employees are encouraged to wear red. Photos of employees will be shared on the hospital Facebook page throughout the day. Community members are also welcome to wear red and share their photos on social media using the hashtag #WearRedandGive.

Categories: News