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Dawn Beland, Connecticut

Dawn Beland, MSN, RN, CCRN, ACNS-BC, CNRN and SCRN is the Stroke Center Coordinator for the Comprehensive Stroke Center at Hartford Hospital and a You're the Cure Advocate. 

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Dawn has been an active volunteer for the AHA/ASA since 2001 involved in BP screenings, health fairs, community talks, conference planning and legislative advocacy. Dawn is Co-chair of the Stroke Coordinators of CT group and has participated in research, published articles and presented topics related to stroke at local, regional and national meetings. 

I am so thankful to the AHA/ASA for the opportunities they provide to promote stroke prevention and symptom recognition.  Daily, patients and families experience the devastation that stroke can bring into their lives.  In the hospital setting, we work to minimize the effects of stroke once it has happened.    More importantly though, are the efforts we all can make toward preventing stroke in the first place.  Treating known risk factors has made stroke largely preventable.  Participating in health fairs or small community talks can help people understand the connections between their risk factors and stroke.  Helping communities stay healthy and out of the hospital is the goal. We can all contribute to this, everyone can do something. 

The other half of the equation is that hospitals need to be ready to care for patients with stroke whenever they present.  Improving the system of care between EMS and hospitals is why I’ve also advocated at the state legislature in favor of the recognition of stroke centers. As part of the CT Department of Public Health Stroke Task Force that developed the recommendations for this initiative, it was exciting to see that the legislation passed during the 2017 session! 

I got involved with the AHA/ASA to make a difference, whether that’s on an individual-level, hospital- or state wide-level.  There is a role for everyone to play, find how you can contribute too!

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