Guest Blogger: Vance Lobe
On April 8 and 9, I again attended “You’re the Cure on the Hill” in Washington DC. This was the 2nd time that I was honored to represent AHA as a survivor and advocate for AHA.
I am a two-time heart attack survivor and 3 years ago decided that I needed to give back to AHA for all that they have done for people like me through research and healthy living advice.
This event in Washington DC is important for all of us, as it helps our elected officials put a face to a statistic that may otherwise be just an abstract number. This year we were given the task to ask that the funding for the National Institute of Health be again funded at the 2012 levels (before the cuts from the sequester) and I believe that myself and the other three advocates from our state made a difference talking to our elected officials about this important issue. In addition to that, we also asked them to support an allocation of $35 million to the Million Hearts campaign (already appropriated) to support an education campaign for the 67 million of us who have high blood pressure. Here again, I think we all made a difference.
Along with the meetings that we had ‘on the hill’, the best part of this trip is the friendships we make with other advocates. We all come from different backgrounds and have different health issues, but the recurring thing about us all is our dedication to health issues. Most of us have been dealt some setbacks in our lives, but I can’t help but think that this is the most POSITIVE group of people I have ever met and am proud to be associated with all of them.