Ultimate Medical Academy Joins American Heart Association’s Campaign to “Go Red for Women”
Tampa, Fla. – February 10, 2020 – Ultimate Medical Academy is teaming up with the American Heart Association (AHA) in Tampa Bay to “Go Red for Women,” an AHA signature movement aimed at eliminating heart disease and stroke in women.
Cardiovascular disease is the number-one killer of women, claiming one in three lives annually, according to the AHA.
Ultimate Medical Academy, a nonprofit healthcare education institution offering hands-on learning at its Clearwater campus as well as online programs, has more than 2,000 team members and more than 14,000 students nationwide, the vast majority of whom are female.
“The purpose of our institution is to equip and empower students to excel in healthcare careers,” said Alexandra Schaffrath, Chief Strategy Officer for UMA. “Helping our team members, students and the communities we serve nurture their own well-being is pertinent to that mission. More than 70% of our team members are women, and more than 90% of our students are, as well. Knowing the impact that cardiovascular disease has on the female population, we felt compelled, as an organization, to be a part of this campaign to raise awareness of this critical issue.”
Throughout February, which marks American Heart Month, UMA is sharing, with students and team members alike, vital information about risk factors for heart disease and how to recognize signs and symptoms of a cardiac event. For example:
• While some risk factors for heart disease are beyond control, such as age and family history, there are plenty that can be influenced, such as increasing physical activity and maintaining a healthy weight.
• Symptoms of a heart attack often present differently in women than in men. Women are more likely to experience shortness of breath, nausea or vomiting, and back or jaw pain.
In addition to providing educational materials to students and staff, UMA is hosting a series of events and activities for team members at its Tampa-area locations. On Friday, Feb. 7, the institution took part in National Wear Red Day, and this week it is offering heart-healthy snacks, guest speaking sessions and biometric screenings.
AHA estimates nearly 80 percent of cardiac events can be prevented, yet cardiovascular diseases continue to be the greatest health threat to women.
“We all lead busy lives and are focused on so many important things, but sharing information, building a sense of community around healthcare, and prioritizing health – these are relatively easy things to do,” said Schaffrath. “We hope these efforts help our students, our team members and our community, and we hope others are inspired to spread the word.”
In addition to “Going Red for Women,” Ultimate Medical Academy strives to raise awareness of other issues related to healthcare and education. In October 2019, UMA had the largest team in the country for the American Cancer Society’s “Making Strides Against Breast Cancer” walk with more than 1,100 participants comprised of students, employees and their friends and family members.
“Our team members and our students choose these initiatives and choose to participate,” said Beth Garland, UMA’s Senior Vice President of Human Resources who helped to organize the institution’s Making Strides team. “They’re committed to making a difference and creating positive outcomes. It’s inspiring to be part of such a community.”