Mahalo to You’re The Cure Advocate Jackie Ng-Osorio, DrPH, MPH, of Honolulu, for representing Hawaii and the American Heart Association at a national “Value in Healthcare Initiative” in Washington D.C. on Sept. 7.
The meeting’s goal was to help identify and eliminate barriers to care— those that limit provider and patient ability to access the best and most appropriate care and medicines. While risk factor modifications have proven to reduce the odds of cardiovascular disease (CVD) by 80 percent, a majority of preventable deaths remain attributable to CVD. At the same time, access to optimal medical therapies is increasingly influenced by an individual’s economic situation and financial resources.
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Dr. Ng-Osorio, is an assessment coordinator, assistant specialist and Ike Ao Pono graduate student advisor at the School of Nursing and Dental Hygiene, University of Hawaii at Manoa. She also conducts research focusing on Native Hawaiian adolescents, healthy lifestyle behaviors including physical activity and eating habits, as well as the relationship between education and health outcomes.
At the meeting she shared her personal journey of treatments to overcome a heart condition that can cause her heart to race to more than 200 beats per minute. She has undergone two ablation operations (a medical procedure that works by scarring or destroying tissue in the heart that triggers or sustains an abnormal heart rhythm), and later received a pacemaker to maintain a proper heart rhythm. Her unique perspective as both a patient, and a public health educator and researcher, will help guide the national discussion on ways to improve healthcare for all.