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A world where any woman can access preventive health services and gain
the wisdom to improve her health.
To provide low-income, under- or uninsured 40- to 64-year-old women with the
knowledge, skills, and opportunities to improve diet, physical activity, and
other lifestyle behaviors to prevent, delay and control cardiovascular and
other chronic diseases.
Why is WISEWOMAN Important?
- 80,700,000 American adults have one or more types of
- Cardiovascular disease includes stroke, high blood pressure,
congestive heart failure, birth heart defects, hardening of the
blood vessels, and other diseases of the circulatory system.
- One in 3 female adults have some form of cardiovascular disease.
- In 2004, cardiovascular disease caused about a death a minute
- In 2004, 460,000 female lives were lost due to cardiovascular
- More female lives were lost due to cardiovascular disease than
by cancer, chronic lower respiratory disease, Alzheimer’s disease,
accidents, and diabetes combined.
- 49% of Black/African-American women have cardiovascular disease.
- 35% of non-Hispanic white women have cardiovascular disease.
- 34.4% of Mexican-American women have cardiovascular disease.
Source: Heart Disease & Stroke Statistics – 2008 Update, American
How Does WISEWOMAN Work?
The WISEWOMAN program is administered through CDC's Division for Heart
Disease and Stroke Prevention (DHDSP). The WISEWOMAN program provides
low–income, under insured or uninsured women aged 40–64 years with
chronic disease risk factor screening, lifestyle intervention, and
referral services in an effort to prevent cardiovascular disease.
funds 21 WISEWOMAN programs, which operate on the local level in states
and tribal organizations. WISEWOMAN programs provide standard preventive services
including blood pressure and cholesterol testing. WISEWOMAN programs
also offer testing for diabetes. Women are not just tested and
referred, but can also take advantage of lifestyle programs that target
poor nutrition, physical inactivity, and smoking, such as healthy
cooking classes, fitness competitions, or quit-smoking classes. The
interventions may vary from program to program, but all are designed to
promote lasting, healthy lifestyle changes.
(Heart and Stoke A to Z Guide)
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*Links to non-Federal organizations are provided
solely as a service to our users. Links do not constitute an endorsement of any
organization by CDC or the Federal Government, and none should be inferred. The
CDC is not responsible for the content of the individual organization Web pages
found at this link.
Page last reviewed: November 5, 2008
Page last modified: November 5, 2008
Content source: Division
for Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention,
National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and
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Spotlight on a WISEWOMAN
It’s Never Too Late to Start Taking Charge of Your
Before learning about the Ladies First program in
Vermont, Lana Hanson would skip breakfast and have
cookies and potato chips for lunch. Her only
complete meal of the day would be dinner, which
consisted of hot dogs or hamburgers with a potato
and a vegetable. “I really had bad eating habits”
A friend told Lana about the Ladies First program
that provides free mammograms and a complete
physical exam including testing for high
cholesterol, high blood sugar, high blood pressure,
and weight. The idea of getting a free complete
physical exam that included a free mammogram excited
Lana, since she did not have health insurance. “I
never had a real good physical, and you are supposed
to have a mammogram done when you are 40 years old,
and I never had one.”
of This Success »