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How your lab can participate in Heart Month

  • by Kevin Driggers
  • Mar 2, 2020, 13:49 PM

February is American Heart Month: How Your Lab Can Participate

Every February, the American Heart Association (AHA) sponsors American Heart Month. It's an opportunity for medical professionals and laboratories to help patients take control of their health with increased heart health awareness.


  • The goal of American Heart Month is to motivate Americans to adopt healthier habits and lifestyles.

American Heart Month can be a thoughtful time for families who have lost a loved one to heart disease (the leading cause of death in the US per the CDC). This makes fundraising and special events meaningful to your patients. Nearly everyone has lost someone special to heart disease. 


  • It's also a chance to glean some inexpensive marketing and social media awareness for your organization.

American BioTech Supply is here to help. From corporate fundraisers to coloring contests, let's cover some ideas to help you get your staff and your customers involved!


Company Fundraisers & Department Challenges

Host a Heart Walk

If you're looking for a team-building experience (and some low-cost positive publicity) why not host an Official Heart Walk? Per the AHA website "The Heart Walk is the American Heart Association's premiere event for raising funds to save lives from this country's No. 1 and No. 5 killers - heart disease and stroke."


  • Even if you can't host the event this February, it's an ideal time to start planning and promoting one for spring.

  • Reach out to AHA for all the materials you need to get started.

  • Large hospitals and organizations can create some good-hearted competition for funds raised, miles walked or sponsors reached.

  • Involve your patients! Keep registration materials handy in lobbies and check-in stations. 

  • Your marketing staff will love the opportunity for free local news coverage and radio publicity.

We realize medical professionals can be overburdened.


  • Adding the task of event planning to anyone's roster can seem overwhelming.

  • If you don't have a marketing or PR department in-house, or if you're short-staffed, hosting a Heart Walk might be too much to handle right now.

Fear not! We know plenty of other ways to celebrate American Heart Month!


Host a Local Community Event

Schools, worship centers and seniors centers make ideal venues for a heart-healthy demonstration. Consider these ideas:


  • Plan a heart-healthy cooking class.

  • Organize a community-based blood pressure check outside a local grocery store or department store.

If your staff is too busy to host anything outside, we have more ways to get your lab involved.


Create a Tribute Page

Heart disease is so prevalent there's a solid chance you've lost a beloved patient or staffer to the disease. Create a Tribute Page with AHA to honor their memory and raise funds in-house. 


Sign up for a free page, personalize it, and invite your coworkers and patients to donate online. Every dollar raised will help folks in your local community live longer, heart-healthier lives.


  • Tribute pages can be as straightforward or as complex as you'd like them to be. 

  • A web-savvy staffer can put one together in minutes.

  • Sharing the memory of your associate can earn you social media "shares" and "likes," earning your lab positive publicity while you fundraise!

Heart health awareness is not only crucial to your organization. It's vital to your patients. Get their attention!


Get Your Patients Involved

Candid discussions between medical professionals and their patients are the most effective way to help patients learn about heart health and American Heart Month. Here are more ideas to help you get patients involved whole-heartedly.


Heart Health for Adults

As the leading cause of death among adults, heart disease should be a significant concern among your mature patients. 


  • Encourage them to join the #OurHearts Movement.

  • Provide educational materials that focus on healthy diets and exercise as key steps towards heart disease prevention. 

  • Talk to them directly about their unique risks, like smoking and a genetic predisposition for the disease.

  • Tweet about American Health Month, or create other fun social media posts.

Addressing the Youth

No one looks forward to having their blood drawn or getting vaccinations. No secret there. Children and adolescents in particular suffer from needle-related fear and needle phobias, which present as significant needle-related distress and avoidance behavior. Implement some lighthearted concepts at your lab to educate youngsters and make their blood-draw experience positive. Consider these ideas:


  • Host a coloring contest. It's easy to run a few hundred copies of a blank heart and provide a few sets of crayons in the lobby.

  • Decorate your lab with the colored hearts, and select a winner at the end of February. 

  • Hold a heart design contest. This is the same idea as a coloring contest, but for teenagers. Supply teens with blank copy paper and colored pencils. 

  • Provide your littlest patients with heart-shaped stickers, suckers or little trinkets they can keep. (Always check with their parents first and explain that candy is a special treat for special days, like when they "get a shot" of course.)

While these methods are all meaningful, and some can be fun, make American Heart Month a focus throughout your entire organization by decorating and dressing for the cause.


Decorate For the Win!

February is American Heart Month and it's no coincidence that Valentine's Day falls within this month! Take this opportunity to stock up on heart-themed decor for your entire operation! 


  • Start the month with your coloring and design challenges, and hang entries on the walls all month long. 

  • Load up on inexpensive "dollar store" decor on February 15. You'll use it for years.

  • Red is generally associated with hearts, encourage your staff to wear red clothing and heart jewelry or trinkets.

Your lab, your staff, your patients, and even your entire community will benefit if your lab takes part in American Heart Month. If your organization has taken part before, feel free to leave a comment on our blog about your success! Whether it was a simple Tweet or a full-blown Heart Walk, we'd love to hear about it!


 


Related Reading & Resources:


National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute: About American Heart Month: Ways to Get Involved


HealthFinder.gov: American Heart Month


CDC.gov: Prevent Heart Disease


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