CA Access News

February 2008

In this Issue: Feature | Healthcare Update | Partner Spotlight | Calendar | Welcome New Partners | In the News | Interesting Information


Know Your Heart Health Risks

Larry LucasBy Larry Lucas, Deputy Vice President
Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America

In many ways, the day was like any other. Ben, who always ate a healthy diet and knew the importance of regular exercise, headed out for his usual morning jog. Sadly, when he returned home, my dear friend Ben Ruffin collapsed and died of a massive heart attack. He was just 64 years old.

Unfortunately, Ben’s story isn’t unique. We hear grim tales just like his every day in the news and through our friends and our families. Cardiovascular disease, which includes heart attack and stroke, is the leading cause of death for African American men and women. According to the American Heart Association (AHA), each year it takes more than 100,000 people from their loved ones and families far too soon. More than 40 percent of all African Americans have high blood pressure (hypertension), one of the most critical indicators of cardiovascular health. Read more about Your Heart Health Risks

Healthcare Update:
Senate Committee Votes NO on Healthcare Reform

Read Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger's statement after the Senate Health Committee failed to approve AB x1 1, the Health Care Security and Cost Reduction Act

Read the comments released by Liz Helms, Chair of the California Chronic Care Coalition, following the rejection of California's healthcare reform bill


Partner Spotlight

Sharp Chula Vista Medical CenterSharp Chula Vista Medical Center

It is our mission to improve the health of those we serve with a commitment to excellence in all that we do. Our goal is to offer quality care and programs that set community standards, exceed patients' expectations and are provided in a caring, convenient, cost-effective and accessible manner.

Sharp Chula Vista Medical Center is a 330-bed hospital with the largest array of health care services in San Diego's South Bay. Home to the region's most comprehensive cardiac program, it also has the area's only radiation oncology center, bloodless surgery program and certified Community Hospital Cancer Program. Together, the 400 physicians and 1,200 health care professionals at Sharp Chula Vista form a multidisciplinary team to provide patient-centered care with high quality treatments for more than 80,000 patients a year.

Web site



An Unhealthy America: The Economic Burden of Chronic Disease

Charting a New Course to Save Lives and Increase Productivity and Economic Growth

Guest Speaker: John Corea - Senior Director of Policy and Research, PhRMA

More than half of all Americans suffer from one or more chronic diseases. Despite dramatic improvements in therapies and treatment, the rates of disease have risen dramatically –- and that rising rate is a crucial but frequently ignored contributor to rising medical expenditures.

Join CPAT for this informative luncheon seminar.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008
12 noon – 2 p.m.
Sacramento, CA
Please check the CPAT Calendar for location information


Be sure to check out the CPAT Calendar of Events to find out about upcoming partner conferences, seminars, fundraisers, and other activities in your area. If you would like your event listed, please contact Kristen at


Welcome New Partners
  • Abraham Low Institute
  • AIDS Prevention Action Network
  • Alzheimer's Association San Diego/Imperial Chapter
  • Amazon Heart
  • California Latino Medical Association
  • Casa Familial
  • COFEM - Consejo de Federaciones Mexicanas en Norteamerica
  • Crenshaw Chamber of Commerce
  • First Chance Y. Chow
  • Hand-N-Hand New Media Fellowship/Young CEO Academy
  • The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society
  • The Links, Inc - Sacramento Chapter
  • Lupus Foundation of Southern California
  • The Minority Health Institute
  • National Multiple Sclerosis Society - Northern California Chapter
  • National Multiple Sclerosis Society - Pacific South Coast Chapter
  • National Multiple Sclerosis Society - Southern California Chapter
  • New Leader's Council
  • Oakland Black AIDS Alliance
  • Ovarian Cancer Coalition of Greater California
  • Parkinson's Disease of San Diego
  • QueensCare Health & Faith Partnership
  • San Diego Autism Society of America
  • Sharp Chula Vista Medical Center
  • St. Anne's
  • WISEPlace

Join Now


In the News

Heart, Stroke Death Rates Decline in U.S.
Anna Boyd
The AHA and CDC report that death rates have made the most dramatic declines ever recorded, though not all minorities are experiencing the same benefits. Read the full article

Ethnicity A Risk Factor For Heart Disease
Sally Squires - Washington Post
January 24, 2008
At first, the 36-year-old South Asian immigrant didn't seem a typical candidate for a heart attack. Read the full article

Getting in Shape Reduces Death Risk
Jamie Stengle – Associated Press
The more fit you are, the longer you're likely to live, according to a large study of veterans that applies to black men as well as white men. Read the full article

Patient Mistrust Extends Racial Divide in Research: Lingering doubts and fears hamper participation by African-Americans
David March – Johns Hopkins Medicine
More than three decades after the shutdown of the notorious Tuskegee study, a team of Johns Hopkins physicians has found that Tuskegee's legacy of blacks' mistrust of physicians and deep-seated fear of harm from medical research persists and is largely to blame for keeping much-needed African- Americans from taking part in clinical trials. Read the full article



Interesting Information

Heart disease disproportionately affects African Americans in the United States:

  • 36.3 percent of all African American deaths are caused by cardiovascular disease, more than any other cause of death.
  • Nearly half of the African American population has some type of cardiovascular disease.
  • The death rate from coronary heart disease is 23 percent higher for African Americans than for non-Hispanic whites.
  • African Americans are more likely than non-Hispanic whites to have high blood pressure, be overweight or obese and to have diabetes – three major factors in the development of cardiovascular disease.

From: American Heart Association - “Heart Facts 2007: African Americans”


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