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American Heart Month and Beyond: National Organization Offers Support at a Local Level

Quality Care | Monday, March 5, 2018

Contact: Andrea Sellers

Heart disease is the leading cause of death in both men and women. To increase awareness of its effects on patients, families and caregivers, Leesburg Regional Medical Center and its Mended Hearts group – Chapter 298 – proudly participated in American Heart month during February and will continue to advocate for heart health for the remainder of the year.

Mended Hearts is a nonprofit group that raises awareness of heart disease and lends support to the families that are affected. It is the world's largest cardiovascular peer-to-peer support network.

Throughout the year, Mended Hearts works closely with Leesburg Regional Medical Center to help heart event survivors have a positive patient care experience. "Our visiting program provides support to families in the hospital when they need it most," says Michele Klaben, president of the Leesburg Chapter 298 of Mended Hearts.

"Although patients and families can connect with each other online anytime they want, nothing can replace the in-person, peer-to-peer connection that Mended Hearts provides to heart patients, caregivers, and their families," said Norm Linsky, Executive Director for Mended Hearts, Inc.

Going through open heart surgery and living with heart disease can be emotionally and physically challenging, but the Mended Hearts team offers a lifeline of support when patients need it most. Volunteers visit with patients at Leesburg Regional Medical Center five days a week. "Last year, we visited 903 patients and 283 families," continues Klaben.

The Leesburg Chapter 298 of Mended Hearts offers a monthly support meeting October through April, on the second Thursday of the month. To find out more about Mended Hearts and its programs, please visit www.mendedhearts.org or call Michele Klaben at (352) 365-6937.