Embargoed for release November 17, 2019 2:30 p.m. ET

PHILADELPHIA, November 17, 2019 — Millions of people are living with structural heart disease in the United States, and many may be unaware or lack effective diagnoses and treatments. It is with these patients in mind that today, the American Heart Association® is announcing a new quality improvement initiative. With support from Edwards Lifesciences, the patient-centered initiative is dedicated to effective identification and appropriate treatment with an initial focus on a prevalent structural heart disease, aortic stenosis.

The comprehensive and scalable program from the Association will raise patient awareness and deepen patient engagement while delivering guideline-directed, optimal-care standards education. 

“We are excited to be collaborating with an organization who shares our passion for helping transform patients’ lives,” said Todd J. Brinton, M.D., F.A.C.C., Corporate Vice President of Advanced Technology and Chief Scientific Officer, Edwards Lifesciences. “Together with the Association, we are confident we can have a positive impact on people living with structural heart disease. The Association is uniquely positioned to lead this initiative given its representation of not only the scientific community, but also patients and the full spectrum of care providers, all aimed at helping people live longer, healthier lives.”

Aortic stenosis is a common public health problem affecting more than 2.5 million people in the U.S. The condition is caused by a narrowing of the aortic valve – one of four valves within the heart – which reduces blood flow to the rest of the body. If left untreated, the condition worsens, and patients with severe aortic stenosis have a survival rate as low as 50 percent at two years.

“Our shared vision of ensuring all structural heart disease patients are identified and appropriately treated is no small undertaking,” said Nancy Brown, chief executive officer of the American Heart Association. “With the support of Edwards Lifesciences and working with our clinical network on our patient-centered public outreach programs, we can better help the millions of Americans impacted by structural heart disease each year.” 

The bold initiative will begin with an intensive approach to aortic stenosis in a select number of communities that will be identified in the first phase of the initiative. These locations will be the front lines to identify best practices for in-patient and out-patient settings alike. The goal is to improve the patient experience from symptom onset to appropriate diagnosis and follow-through, to timely treatment and disease management. The program consists of evidence-based measurement development to better identify and treat patients, as well as multi-media educational resources and self-management care plans for people living with structural heart disease. 


About the American Heart Association

The American Heart Association is a leading force for a world of longer, healthier lives. With nearly a century of lifesaving work, the Dallas-based association is dedicated to ensuring equitable health for all. We are a trustworthy source empowering people to improve their heart health, brain health and well-being. We collaborate with numerous organizations and millions of volunteers to fund innovative research, advocate for stronger public health policies and share lifesaving resources and information. Connect with us on heart.org, Facebook, Twitter or by calling 1-800-AHA-USA1.

About Edwards Lifesciences

Edwards Lifesciences, based in Irvine, Calif., is the global leader in patient-focused medical innovations for structural heart disease, as well as critical care and surgical monitoring. Driven by a passion to help patients, the company collaborates with the world's leading clinicians and researchers to address unmet healthcare needs, working to improve patient outcomes and enhance lives. For more information, visit www.Edwards.com and follow us on Twitter @EdwardsLifesci.

Edwards, Edwards Lifesciences and the stylized E logo are trademarks of Edwards Lifesciences Corporation. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. This statement is made on behalf of Edwards Lifesciences Corporation and its subsidiaries.

Media Contact Info:

Karen Springs; C: 972.259.0350; karen.springs@heart.org