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WISEWOMAN honored with Alaska Rural Health Award

SITKA, April 25, 2012 — The SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC) WISEWOMAN Program received the Alaska Rural Health Award for Outstanding Rural Health Program during a luncheon today (April 25) at the Alaska Rural Health Conference in Anchorage.

 The Outstanding Rural Health Program award “recognizes a community, regional or statewide program involving one or more health professionals or entities that promotes or facilitates the development of rural health delivery systems,” according to the Alaska Primary Care Association which presents the awards. “Factors considered include coordination of services, networking, collaboration, innovation in development and implementation and lasting impact of program on populations served.”

 “The SEARHC WISEWOMAN Program is pleased to be recognized by the Alaska Rural Health Conference as an Outstanding Rural Health Program,” said Litia Garrison, SEARHC Women’s Health Program Manager. Since 2000, our WISEWOMAN Program has helped women learn more about preventing heart disease and stroke, as well as supporting them to eat healthier, be more active and quit using tobacco. This award reflects the dedicated staff efforts, local partnerships and organizational support from SEARHC that led to the WISEWOMAN Program’s successes. We accept this award in honor of the many women of Southeast Alaska who have made positive, heart-healthy changes in their lives, improving their health along with the health of their families and communities.”

 The SEARHC WISEWOMAN Program, or Yaa Kudzigéiyi Shaawát, is one of 21 WISEWOMAN (Well-Integrated Screening and Evaluation for Women Across the Nation) programs around the country sponsored by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Through these 21 programs (two in Alaska), WISEWOMAN provides screening for heart disease and stroke risk factors and lifestyle interventions for many low-income, uninsured, or under-insured women aged 40–64 years.

 The SEARHC WISEWOMAN Program works with local and statewide partners to serve Alaska Native/American Indian and non-Native women in 18 Southeast Alaska communities. The program provides screening for blood pressure, glucose, cholesterol and other lipids testing, as well as the opportunity to receive individualized healthy lifestyle counseling. In addition, the SEARHC WISEWOMAN Women’s Health Program also provides support for breast and cervical cancer screening as part of a comprehensive approach to women’s health. For info about the SEARHC WISEWOMAN Program, go to http://www.searhc.org/womenshealth/.

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