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Preeclampsia Foundation Cuff Kit wins Health and Human Services Office on Women’s Health prize for HHS Hypertension Innovator Award Competition

December 1, 2021 – Melbourne, FL – The Preeclampsia Foundation announced that its Cuff Kit™ program is a Phase 1 winner of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office on Women’s Health (OWH) Hypertension Innovator Award Competition.

OWH created a national competition to identify effective, pre-existing programs that care for women with hypertension who are pregnant and/or postpartum. Hypertension, or high blood pressure, increases risk for heart disease and stroke - the leading causes of death in the United States. According to recent data from the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), hypertension affects 1 of 10 pregnancies in the United States.

“This challenge aims to address hypertension because cardiovascular disease continues to be the leading cause of maternal death and is responsible for over 33 percent of pregnancy-related deaths,” said Deputy Assistant Secretary for Women’s Health and Director of the Office on Women’s Health, Dorothy Fink, M.D. “The challenge awardees that we are announcing have implemented programs in their communities and clinical settings that have improved blood pressure control both during pregnancy and postpartum.  In the upcoming year, we are excited to have these innovative programs impact more women.”

The Preeclampsia Foundation started providing the Cuff Kit™ in June 2020 to women at highest risk of developing preeclampsia and other hypertensive disorders of pregnancy – especially to our most vulnerable populations. The kit includes a validated automatic BP device, educational tools around signs and symptoms, postpartum risk, “How to take your own blood pressure” information sheet and video, BP log tracker, “still at risk” postpartum reminder bracelets, and additional evidence-based information online.

“The ability for all women to access healthcare during and after pregnancy has been further challenged by COVID-19, but the application of home monitoring and telehealth as an important option has garnered considerable attention,” stated Preeclampsia Foundation CEO Eleni Z. Tsigas. “The recognition of this program alongside many other worthy programs focused on hypertension in women who are pregnant or postpartum represents a strong first step to ensuring all women are routinely screened and educated about their blood pressure.

More detail about the Cuff Kit program is available at preeclampsia.org/the-cuff-kit.

About the Preeclampsia Foundation

The Preeclampsia Foundation is a U.S.-based 501(c)(3) non-profit organization established in 2000 to improve the outcomes of hypertensive disorders of pregnancy by educating, supporting, and engaging the community, improving healthcare practices, and finding a cure. We envision a world where preeclampsia and related hypertensive disorders of pregnancy no longer threaten the lives of mothers and babies. For more information, visit www.preeclampsia.org.

About the Office on Women’s Health

Established in 1991, the Office on Women’s Health (OWH) works to improve the health of women and girls in the U.S. through policy, education, and innovative programs. OWH also coordinates women’s health efforts across HHS, working collaboratively with federal agencies and external partners to address important women’s health topics. OWH is part of the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health (OASH) within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. To learn more about OWH visit womenshealth.gov.

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