Objective: The purpose of this study was to improve the fund of knowledge, reduce cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk, and attain Healthy People 2010 objectives among women in model women's heart programs. Methods: A 6-month pre/post-longitudinal educational intervention of high-risk women (n=1310) patients at six U.S. women's heart programs consisted of comprehensive heart health counseling and use of American Heart Association/American College of Cardiology (AHA/ACC) Evidence-Based Guidelines as enhancement to usual care delivered via five integrated components: education/awareness, screening/risk assessment, diagnostic testing/treatment, lifestyle modification/rehabilitation, and tracking/evaluation. Demographics, before and after knowledge surveys, clinical diagnoses, laboratory parameters, and Framingham risk scores were also determined. Changes in fund of knowledge, awareness, and risk reduction outcomes and Healthy People 2010 objectives were determined. Results: At 6 months, there were statistically significant improvements in fund of knowledge, risk awareness, and clinical outcomes. Participants attained or exceeded >90% of the Healthy People 2010 objectives. Proportions of participants showing increased knowledge and awareness of CVD as the leading killer of women, of all signs and symptoms of a heart attack, and calling 911 increased significantly (11.1%, 25.4%, and 34.6%, respectively). Health behavior counseling for physical activity, diet, and diabetes as CVD risk factors increased significantly (28.3%, 28.2%, and 12.5%, respectively). There was a statistical 4.1% increase in participants with systolic blood pressure (SBP) <140/90mm Hg, a 4.7% decrease in participants with total cholesterol (TC) >240mg/dL, a 4.5% decrease in participants with TC >200mg/dL, a 5.9% decrease in participants with high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) <50mg/dL, a 4.4% decrease in participants with HDL-C <40mg/dL, and an 8.8% increase in diabetics with low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) <100mg/dL. Conclusions: CVD prevention built around a comprehensive heart care model program and AHA/ACC Evidence-Based Guidelines can be successful in improving knowledge and awareness, CVD risk factor reduction, and attainment of Healthy People 2010 objectives in high-risk women. Thus, these programs could have a dramatic and lasting impact on the health of women.
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