Evidence Base in Design
Cardiovascular disease (CVD) encompasses a group of heart and blood vessel disorders, such as coronary artery disease (CAD), that can cause heart attacks and strokes and lead to death (World Health Organization, 2017). According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) (2020), cardiovascular disease remains the leading cause of death for women in the United States despite increased awareness over the past decades. About half of all people have one of three key risk factors for heart disease, which include high blood pressure, high LDL (low-density lipoprotein) cholesterol, and smoking (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2020). In the current 117th Congress, Representative Jaime Herrera Beutler introduced the H. Res. 88 into the House of Representatives on February 2, 2021. The purpose of this resolution is to identify women’s cardiovascular health as a critical health care issue and supports gender-specific cardiovascular health research, prevention, and treatment (Recognizing women’s cardiovascular health, 2021).
There is evidence to support this proposed policy because many different national agencies/organizations have information and statistics on their websites to support women’s cardiovascular health and there are numerous research articles that examine advances in women’s cardiovascular health. In addition to the WHO and CDC mentioned in the first paragraph, the Mayo Clinic and American Heart Association (AHA) are two other organizations that promote the importance of cardiovascular health, risk factors and symptoms associated with heart disease, and how to prevent cardiovascular disease. Some lifestyle changes that the Mayo Clinic suggests to prevent heart disease include smoking cessation, medically managing and controlling other health conditions, exercising at least 30 minutes a day on most days of the week, eat a low salt and saturated fat diet, reduce and manage stress, maintain a healthy weight, and practice good hygiene (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 2021). According to the American Heart Association (2021), heart disease and stroke cause 1 in 3 deaths among women each year and 80 percent of cardiac and stroke events may be prevented with education and action. The AHA’s Go Red For Women community works to improve the health of all women by inspiring them to make lifestyle changes, mobilize communities, and shape policies to save lives (American Heart Association, 2021). Furthermore, Raeisi-Giglou et al. (2018) states, “with increased awareness, partnership with national organizations, sex-specific research, and changes in policy, the morbidity and mortality of CVD in women can be further reduced” (p. 128).
Policies are designed to motivate individuals to do what they might ordinarily do by influencing behavior. Organizations and agencies that are unable to solve healthcare problems look toward policymakers for possible solutions due to their ability to impact legislation. Furthermore, health services researchers can inform policy by identifying a problem, weighing risks and benefits of possible solutions, and providing government and society cost estimates for possible solutions (Milstead & Short, 2019). As you can see, there are many ways that health policies can be addressed and influenced in legislation, which can heavily impact the healthcare-related issues that citizens of the United States face on a daily basis.
American Heart Association. (2021). About heart disease in women. Go Red For Women.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2020, January 31). Women and heart disease.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. https://www.cdc.gov/heartdisease/women.htm
Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research. (2021, February 9). Heart disease. Mayo
Milstead, J. A., & Short, N. M. (2019). Health policy and politics: A nurse’s guide (6th ed.).
Burlington, MA: Jones & Bartlett Learning.
Raeisi-Giglou, P., Volgman, A. S., Patel, H., Campbell, S., Villablanca, A., & Hsich, E. (2018).
Advances in cardiovascular health in women over the past decade: Guideline
recommendations for practice. Journal of Women’s Health, 27(2), 128-139. https://doi.org/10.1089/jwh.2016.6316
Recognizing women’s cardiovascular health as a critical health care priority that affects every
State and contributes to increased health care costs, and promoting the necessity of
increased awareness of and education on the symptoms for heart disease among women, gender-specific cardiovascular disease research, and policy action to
alleviate the risks of heart disease among women, H. Res. 88, 117th Congress. (2021). http://www.congress.gov/bill/117th-congress/house-resolution/88
World Health Organization. (2017, May 17). Cardiovascular diseases (CVDs). World Health