IRVINE, California, August 10, 2023 — The American Heart Association, a global force for longer, healthier lives, announces a new initiative with the Santa Ana Public Libraries (SAPL). Because hypertension is a leading risk factor for cardiovascular disease, the organizations are meeting people where they are to help improve blood pressure. The Libraries with Heart initiative will offer support to community members focusing on their health journey by providing blood pressure kits that can be checked out as part of its Library of Things collection.

According to the American Heart Association, nearly half of U.S. adults have high blood pressure, a major risk factor for heart attacks, strokes, and other health issues, including dementia and kidney disease. In Orange County, 26 percent of adults have been diagnosed with high blood pressure. More than two-thirds of people with uncontrolled high blood pressure are impacted by structural inequities that limit their access to health care. 

“There is a high prevalence of high blood pressure, but most individuals don’t know they have it,” said American Heart Association OC Board President, Pranav M. Patel, MD., Chief, Division of Cardiology, UC Irvine. “By having blood pressure kits accessible to library patrons, we are meeting people where they are with resources to encourage regular blood pressure checks, better hypertension management and healthy habits.”

By making life-saving devices, like blood pressure monitors, more accessible to the public, this program will expand efforts to improve the lives of individuals, families, and the community.

“Public Libraries are important community partners when it comes to improving health literacy,” Library Services Director Brian Sternberg said. “The Santa Ana Public Library is proud to partner with the American Heart Association to make health equity a priority in Santa Ana.”

The health resource fair, called Libraries with Heart: A Healthy Start to a New School Year, is offered in collaboration with the American Heart Association and the Orange County Health Care Agency. The health fair will take place from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Santa Ana Public Library, 26 Civic Center Plaza, Santa Ana. The event is free and open to all ages.


About the American Heart Association

The American Heart Association is a relentless force for a world of longer, healthier lives. We are dedicated to ensuring equitable health in all communities. Through collaboration with numerous organizations, and powered by millions of volunteers, we fund innovative research, advocate for the public’s health and share lifesaving resources. The Dallas-based organization has been a leading source of health information for nearly a century. Connect with us on heart.orgFacebookTwitter or by calling 1-800-AHA-USA1.   

For Media Inquiries:  

Daniel Ruacho 480-773-2355 or

For Public Inquiries: 1-800-AHA-USA1 (242-8721) and