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NIH MedlinePlus the Magazine, Trusted Health Information from the National Institutes of Health

Celebrities Gather to Fight Heart Disease

Get Involved!

Here's how you and/or your organization can help organize and promote the Red Dress Campaign and its National Wear Red Day next year — February 1, 2008.

  • Use a Heart Truth Speaker's Kit to offer community education programs on women's heart disease.
  • Organize heart-health screening events and health fairs at businesses, faith-based organizations, hospitals, clinics, and health centers and distribute Heart Truth materials.
  • Plan a "Wear a Red Dress Day" for your place of worship. You can put a notice in the bulletin, hold an educational session using the Speaker's Kit and distribute Heart Truth brochures and fact sheets.
  • Ask your local library to set up a special heart health exhibit or organize a special reading center focused on women and heart disease.
  • Partner with local large businesses and corporations in your community or state to promote heart health awareness in the workplace.
  • Request that your state or community government launch The Heart Truth campaign and celebrate National Wear Red Day
  • For more information about The Heart Truth, including an online toolkit to help you plan activities, campaign materials, Red Dress pin, and a registry to submit your women's heart health activities, visit the campaign Web pages at
Participants in this year's NHLBI The Heart Truth campaign

Participants in this year's NHLBI The Heart Truth campaign, highlighted by the Red Dress Collection Fashion Show in New York City in early February, included (from left to right) Kimberly Guilfoyle Villency, Kim Cattrall, Katharine McPhee, Sheila Johnson, Danica Patrick, Angela Bassett, Mae Jemison, Lauren Hutton, Phylicia Rashad, Paula Zahn, Marlee Matlin, Zuleyka Rivera, Natalie Morales, Helena Christensen, Betsey Johnson, Kelly Ripa, Kristin Chenoweth, Billie Jean King, Jane Krakowski, Rachael Ray, and Mary Hart.
Photo courtesy of NIH/NHLBI

Red Dress Campaign marks steady progress

The number of heart disease deaths in American women is decreasing, according to recent research by NIH's National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI). Newly analyzed data show that the number of women who die from heart disease has shifted from 1 in 3 women to 1 in 4 — a decrease of nearly 17,000 deaths from 2003 to 2004. Cardiovascular disease, the leading cause of death for men and women in the United States, kills nearly 500,000 women each year.

NHLBI, through The Heart Truth campaign, continued its awareness efforts by returning to New York Fashion Week the first week in February for the fifth year, with its signature platform — the Red Dress Collection Fashion Show.

"We have much to celebrate with the release of this data. It is very good news indeed," says Elizabeth G. Nabel, M.D., director of NHLBI. "To see such a significant reduction in deaths underscores that the efforts of many individuals and organizations to raise awareness, improve treatment and access, and inspire women to take action are truly saving lives."

Spring 2007 Issue: Volume 2 Number 2 Page 3