LUCOM co-sponsors Second Annual HeartChase
Heart Disease is the leading cause of death in the United States for both men and women. It is estimated that over 600,000 die of heart disease every year. That is the equivalent of one in every four deaths being heart related. This past Saturday, May 2, Liberty University and the College of Osteopathic Medicine (LUCOM), along with Centra Health’s Stroobants Cardiovascular Center, co-sponsored the American Heart Association’s (AHA) Second Annual Lynchburg HeartChase; a community event to raise heart health awareness.
Held on Liberty’s main campus, HeartChase is an adventurous event with challenging games, points for prizes, and scavenger hunt elements spread throughout the campus. The objective of HeartChase is to successfully complete those challenges while searching for hidden “tags” that contain extra points. Each challenge was designed with the heart muscle in mind, be it exercise (to get the heart pumping) or through a series of trivial pursuits. All were designed for players to have fun and be educated on maintaining a healthy heart.
Nearly 70 participants arrived this year raising over $13,000 in an effort to fight against heart disease. LUCOM student-doctors, faculty, and staff operated nine of the ten challenge stations with several competing teams consisting of people from LUCOM, LU, Centra Health, and the Lynchburg community.
Chad Hoyt, M.D., one of the lead cardiologists with the Stroobants Cardiovascular Center, said, “HeartChase is an exciting event. It is growing each year. We’ve doubled the amount of funds from last year, and we’ve increased in our participation. It’s good to know that the word about heart awareness is getting out.”
Dr. Hoyt, not only was a donor for the event, but he and his family entered the event as a team. “This event was a great way to spend time with my kids and have fun. The games encouraged teamwork and they got to learn more about how the heart functions.”
Ronnie Martin, D.O., Dean of LUCOM, was one of the main speakers of HeartChase. “The American Heart Association has accomplished a significant amount of work over the years. HeartChase is an opportunity for us to partner with them as they continue to make strides in battling heart disease. Everyone has a loved one, family member, or friend that is affected by something heart related. Because it affects them, it affects us. And that is why we are here today.”
HeartChase will return Spring 2016.