Representatives From Nicklaus Children’s Hospital to Lead American Heart Association’s Miami-Dade Heart Challenge 

The initiative aims to save lives in Miami-Dade County.

In Miami-Dade County, cardiovascular disease is one of the primary causes of death. To address this challenge, Perry Ann Reed, COO and SVP of Nicklaus Children’s Health System and president of Nicklaus Children’s Hospital, and Dr. Redmond Burke, Director of Cardiovascular Surgery at Nicklaus Children’s Hospital, are collaborating with the American Heart Association to improve this statistic. Reed and Dr. Burke (pictured) will lead the 2023 Miami-Dade Heart Challenge, a community campaign to encourage local companies, corporations and their employees to join hands in the fight against heart disease and stroke.

“This year’s Heart Walk has extra special meaning for me,” Reed says. “I have always had a deeply held commitment to heart health both personally and for our community. This year, my own personal journey heightened my awareness and reminded me of the importance that we must all band together and take steps to battle heart disease. I implore everyone to join me and my Nicklaus Children’s Hospital family by lacing up, leading the way and alleviating heart disease at this year’s heart walk.”

The 2023 Miami Heart Walk will take place at 8 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 2 at Regatta Park in Coconut Grove, 3500 Pan American Dr. This year’s theme is ‘I Walk to Save Lives.’ Participants are encouraged to take ownership of their Heart Walk campaign by connecting with the reasons they walk and the movement to save lives and promote better heart and brain health.

“The reason to participate looks different for each walker,” Dr. Burke says. “I walk for all my patient’s families, who fight so hard for their babies with congenital heart disease.”

Reed and Dr. Burke, who are co-chairs of the Heart Challenge, will lead a group of executives from Miami-Dade County to encourage companies and organizations to participate in various Heart Challenge initiatives, such as Heart Walk®, Field Day, and Executives with Heart. These initiatives will help raise funds for the American Heart Association while facilitating discussions about employee health, corporate engagement, community health, and transformation.

“We are incredibly grateful for these leaders who are stepping up to move the needle when it comes to heart disease and stroke,” Marisol Garcia says, Executive Director for the American Heart Association’s Greater Miami and Fort Lauderdale Market. “Through the various Heart Challenge initiatives, we are able to drive maximum impact through employee engagement and corporate fundraising. Together, we can save lives right here in Miami-Dade.”

Preventing heart disease and stroke is mainly possible by adopting healthy eating habits, exercising regularly and managing stress levels. Heart Challenge offers a variety of resources, tools, and activities to support the mental and physical well-being of employers and employees.

For more information about the Heart Challenge or to get involved, contact Juanita Giraldo-De La Paz at [email protected] or visit MiamiDadeHeartWalk.org to register for free.

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