New MUHC clinic will cut cardiac death toll improve heart health for high-risk women
Once thought of as a man’s disease, heart disease is actually an equal opportunity killer. In fact, heart disease and stroke kill more than seven times more Canadian women than breast cancer. To help change those sobering statistics, the McGill University Health Centre (MUHC) recently opened its Women’s Healthy Heart Clinic.
Headed by Cardiac Nurse Clinician, Wendy Wray, the clinic will help women who are at a high risk of heart disease to reduce their risk of disease through medical and lifestyle interventions. The clinic will serve women aged 45 or older, who are at high risk because of their medical or family history.
“At our clinic, women will have their risk of heart disease assessed, and will receive intensive evidence-based treatment, follow-up and support to reduce their risk,” explains Wray. “For extra peace of mind, patients will have direct access to a nurse five days a week.”
“Our goal is to ‘head off’ heart disease in women at high risk for cardiac problems,” adds Dr. Jacques Genest, Chief of Cardiology at the MUHC. “This nurse-led initiative will allow the MUHC to provide care that can quite literally mean the difference between life and premature death. The clinic will operate as a collaborative nurse-physician practice. Making this kind of care available to a high-risk population represents a major step forward for cardiology at the MUHC.”
The Women’s Healthy Heart Clinic was made possible by founding sponsor, Novartis Pharmaceuticals Canada, in partnership with MUHC Foundation. "The risk of heart disease in women is widely underestimated,” explains David Meek, President of Novartis Pharmaceuticals Canada. “Historically, there has been a treatment gap between men and women in cardiac care. As a leader in cardiovascular health, it is our responsibility to close this gap by supporting leading-edge community programs such as this. We applaud the MUHC for making this vital service available.”
Support from Novartis helped the MUHC bring this community resource on-line quickly. According to Wendy Wray, who is also Director of Women's Healthy Heart Initiative, Cardiology Division, "We are very grateful for the generous support from Novartis. Their $50,000 contribution gave life to this important and innovative project, and without this funding I am not totally sure that this initiative would have been realized".
On Thursday, May 14 at 12:00pm, members of the media are invited to attend the launch of the Women’s Healthy Heart Clinic. The event will begin at the JSI Browne Amphitheater on M3 at the Royal Victoria Hospital. Dr. Sonia Anand, visiting professor and researcher from McMaster University, will give a talk entitled “The Rise and Fall of Hormone Replacement Therapy: The Case for Rigorous Epidemiology and Unbiased Interpretation.”
At 1:00pm, there will be a reception and a brief ribbon-cutting ceremony on H4 in the Nurses’ Lounge, at which time the media are invited to interview one of our specialists and to get film footage or photos of a clinic in action.
The McGill University Health Centre (MUHC) is a comprehensive academic health institution with an international reputation for excellence in clinical programs, research and teaching. Its partner hospitals are the Montreal Children's Hospital, the Montreal General Hospital, the Royal Victoria Hospital, the Montreal Neurological Hospital, the Montreal Chest Institute and the Lachine Hospital. The goal of the MUHC is to provide patient care based on the most advanced knowledge in the health care field and to contribute to the development of new knowledge. www.muhc.ca