FORT MADISON – Today Fort Madison Community Hospital (FMCH), in conjunction with the American Heart Association, The Children’s Heart Foundation, and hospitals across the state, launched the 3rd year of Iowa’s Little Hats, Big Hearts initiative. The program outfits newborns with knitted red caps during Heart Month in February to raise awareness of heart disease, the number one killer of Americans, and congenital heart defects, a condition that affects 1 in every 110 babies born in the US. All babies born at participating hospitals during the month of February will receive a hat.
“The FMCH Birthplace is excited to partner with the American Heart Association and the Children’s Heart Foundation to raise awareness to the many ways heart disease affects our community. Little Hats, Big Hearts brings attention to congenital heart defects, the most common type of birth defect in Iowa” says Angie Budnik, Community Relations Director, FMCH. “The volunteers who pull this program together, including making the red hats, are to be commended for their dedication to bringing attention to heart disease in Iowa.”
The FMCH Birthplace staff perform a noninvasive Congenital Heart Disease screening on all of the newborns they deliver after 24 hours of age.
The American Heart Association plans to deliver over 3,000 hats to the following participating hospitals across the state of Iowa this year.
Little Hats, Big hearts began in Chicago in 2014. The project has grown to include 660 hospitals in 40 states handing out more than 100,000 hats. In addition to using red hats to raise awareness of heart disease and congenital heart defects, Little Hat, Big Hearts also drives awareness for the American Heart Association’s Support Network, an online forum for families affected by heart disease and stroke.
About The Children’s Heart Foundation
Established by Betsy Peterson in 1996, The Children’s Heart Foundation (CHF) is the country’s leading national organization solely committed to congenital heart research funding. CHF is a national 501(c)(3) tax‐exempt charitable organization, whose mission is to fund the most promising research to advance the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of congenital heart defects. Since 1996, CHF has funded millions of dollars of research across the U.S. and Canada. For more information, please visit: www.childrensheartfoundation.org. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.