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UW Center on Aging to Provide Educational Programs for American Heart Month

February 2, 2022

To help people lead longer and healthier lives, the University of Wyoming Center on Aging (WyCOA) is offering several educational opportunities to support American Heart Month.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, people were less likely to engage in healthy lifestyle behaviors that reduced the risk of heart disease. These behaviors included eating enough fruits and vegetables, getting enough exercise and limiting alcohol consumption.

According to the American Heart Association’s heart disease and stroke statistics, heart disease continues to be the greatest health threat to Americans and is still the leading cause of death worldwide. Nearly 18.6 million people across the globe died of cardiovascular disease in 2019, which is a 17 percent increase over the previous decade.

“Heart disease is the No. 1 killer in Wyoming,” says Kevin Franke, a regional coordinator for WyCOA. “It is our belief that ongoing education will ensure providers here in Wyoming have the tools they need to support the health of their patients.”

As part of the celebration of Heart Month, Dr. Thomas Repas, of Gillette, will present “Your Heart Matters” via Zoom at noon Thursday, Feb. 24. The session for health care providers will focus on cardiovascular and lipid disease to help improve patient outcomes.

“Target: BP Webinar -- Measuring Blood Pressure Accurately -- Step 1 in Hypertension Control,” an online training course, also will be offered through the American Heart Association Lifelong Learning platform. The goal of this training is to obtain an accurate measure of blood pressure to help ensure that all patients, with any form of high blood pressure, are both diagnosed and treated while minimizing the number of patients who may be misdiagnosed.

The blood pressure-focused webinar will provide certification that meets yearly education requirements for blood pressure monitoring.

“We are excited to continue work with the Wyoming Department of Health Chronic Disease Prevention Program to improve the cardiac health of Wyoming residents,” Franke says.

For more information about both programs and to register, go to

For more information about American Heart Month, call Jenny Wolf at (307) 766-2829 or email

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