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Sacred Heart Press Release


Sacred Heart Hospital Nurse Wins 'Women of Heart' Award

February 20, 2009
Contact: Lauren Fetterman
Publications Specialist – Marketing and Public Relations
610.776.4590 / lfetterm@shh.org

Sacred Heart Hospital Nurse Wins Women of Heart Award

ALLENTOWN, PA – Theresa Polenchar, RN, BS, Director of the Cardiovascular Center at Sacred Heart Hospital, received the Women of Heart “Expert” award. The Women of Heart awards are given in partnership with the American Heart Association’s Go Red for Women movement. Polenchar was honored along with the winners of the “Caregiver” and “Heart Survivor” awards at a Go Red for Women luncheon at the Hotel Bethlehem on February 18, 2009. Go Red for Women is the American Heart Association’s national campaign to raise awareness that heart disease is the number one killer of women, and women’s greatest health threat.

The “Expert” category honors a female professional in the fields of health care, nutrition, exercise, or education who has made an outstanding contribution to promote heart health among women. As the winner of the “Expert” award, Polenchar received a prize package that includes a spa day from American Hairlines, limousine transportation to and from the spa courtesy of Adamo Limousine, and a Go Red for Women prize bag.

Polenchar has worked at Sacred Heart Hospital for 35 years, spent 27 of those years in the Cardiovascular Center, and has been the Center’s Director since 1999. Her mother’s diagnosis of cardiovascular disease inspired Polenchar’s passion to care for and educate women about heart disease. A volunteer with the Go Red for Women campaign since 2004, Polenchar has coordinated many different initiatives, sales, and events to raise awareness about heart disease in women. Within the past six years, she has sold red dress pins, developed a weekly lecture series at Sacred Heart Hospital about different heart topics, organized a themed basket raffle, displayed Go Red for Women and heart disease informational posters at various hospital locations, and facilitated the design of a “Real Men Wear Red” t-shirt for male employees to wear on National Wear Red Day.

To further encourage her fellow employees to get involved, Polenchar has helped coordinate and has participated on a Sacred Heart Hospital team for the Lehigh Valley Heart Walk. She coordinated efforts with Lehigh Valley Mall and Macy’s for a special Go Red for Women fashion show held every February. Polenchar has also been involved in radio panel discussions and public speaking engagements with Sacred Heart Hospital and the American Heart Association in order to raise awareness and help fight cardiovascular disease. Since 2004, Polenchar has helped raise a total of $24,100 for the Go Red for Women campaign.

Sacred Heart Hospital is a 233-bed Catholic medical center located in central Allentown, Pa. Founded in 1912, Sacred Heart Hospital offers a wide range of advanced medical services ranging from acute rehabilitation to bariatric services to adult psychiatric services. A network of physician practices throughout Lehigh and Northampton Counties provide complete primary and pediatric medical care to the region’s residents. Sacred Heart Hospital is nationally recognized in case management, as a Center of Excellence in Bariatric Surgery, and its Transitional Care Facility was granted a Five-Star rating by the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Additional information is available at www.shh.org.

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