Tuesday, February 20, 2024 - 11:00pm

North Dakota Lt. Gov. Tammy Miller today recognized American Hearth Month with a state Heart Health Month proclamation, and celebrated the North Dakota State Capitol Complex’s Cardiac Ready Campus designation at the North Dakota You’re the Cure Day at the Capitol.

“Now that our State Capitol Complex is ‘Cardiac Ready,’ we can share the benefits and lead as an example to other public and private entities,” Miller said. “Having AEDs easily accessible and making sure that more people have knowledge of CPR across our Capitol Complex, allows us to be more ready than ever to deal with cardiac-related emergencies. We encourage all employers in North Dakota to have resources available to help enhance workplace safety, which is a key to success for both employers and their team members.”

Miller applauded the multi-agency team that worked to make the Capitol the second-ever Cardiac Ready Campus in the state, noting the extensive criteria needed to obtain the distinction.

“Too many lives are lost to heart disease, which is the leading cause of death in North Dakota and the U.S.,” said State Health Officer Dr. Nizar Wehbi, who stressed that heart disease can be prevented. “I applaud the work done to support access to lifesaving equipment and remind all that prevention is also crucial to saving lives. I encourage North Dakotans to get back on track with preventive health screenings and checkups, to know their risk factors, and learn how they can improve their health by stopping smoking, making other healthy lifestyle changes and staying physically active.”

Speakers at the North Dakota You’re the Cure Day included:

  • American Heart Association State Government Relations Director Tony Burke
  • State Health Officer Dr. Nizar Wehbi
  • Health and Human Services Cardiac and Stroke Systems Coordinator Christine Greff
  • Capitol Cardiac Ready Campus Lead, and Facility Management Administrative Assistant Julie Strom
  • Valley City High School Athletic Trainer Tabitha Muncy

The American Heart Association also invited Miss North Dakota Sydney Helgeson and Miss Teen North Dakota Ellie Ahlfeldt to facilitate live demonstrations of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and use of an automated external defibrillator (AED), and Medicaid Clinical Services Analyst Nicole Weigel to administer blood pressure screenings during the event.

“Everyone, everywhere across the state of North Dakota deserves the opportunity to survive a cardiac emergency,” said Tony Burke, government relations director for the American Heart Association in North Dakota. “The Cardiac Ready Communities and Campuses programs seek to strengthen the chain of survival across our state. We’re grateful to leadership from the Governor’s Office and administration for making the heart health of North Dakotans a priority.

The American Heart Association is celebrating its 100th anniversary of living fiercely with Bold Hearts this year. The association works to bring awareness to cardiovascular diseases and stroke and disease prevention.