The University of Ottawa Patient Alumni Association held its third very successful Meet the Expert* session on September 26th. Entitled START THE CONVERSATION – A Woman’s Heart Health Across her Lifespan, nearly 100 people attended the session at the Canal Ritz to hear featured experts and patients share their knowledge and experience on prevention of women’s heart diseases and ways to develop a heart healthy lifestyle.

Reception desk

The evening was started by a very energetic and talented MC, Ms. Jane Brownrigg, Clinical Manager at Cardiac Rehabilitation who first introduced Dr. Thais Coutinho, Chief, Division of Prevention and Rehabilitation at the Institute. She offered a passionate, informative and revealing presentation, where she outlined that men and women are very different when it comes to matters of heart health. She provided an overview of women with heart disease across their lifespan, and a state of affairs in women heart health in Canada.

Jane Bronwrigg, MC and speaker, arriving at the event 

Following her, Ms. Lisa McDonnell, Program Manager at the at Prevention & Wellness Centre and Canadian Women’s Heart Health Centre, Division of Prevention and Rehabilitation, presented a very detailed overview of available programs and services offered by the Centre.

Jean Bilodeau, President of the UOHI Alumni, and Jane Brownrigg, welcoming guests

Jane Brownrrigg then shared her knowledge about the prevention and rehabilitation program she manages, including an overview of the impacts and barriers for access to women.

Jane Brownrigg, introducing the speakers

We were also very fortunate that two former Heart Institute Patients agreed to share their lived experience with generosity and emotion. They explained what programs they participated in and what value they got out of them, and advocated for women’s heart health.

Dr. Thais Coutinho, making her presentation.

Dr. Thais Coutinho, making her presentation.

Numerous questions asked by guests demonstrated a strong interest in the featured topic. The informal setting allowed for a vibrant exchange between guests and speakers. Women’s heart health is a matter that is attracting high interest, as demonstrated by the success of this evening. Thank you to all who attended this session.

Lisa McDonnell, speaking on the Canadian Women’s Heart Health Centre

For the occasion, a healthy menu was presented to guests who gathered in the scenic room to hear the University of Ottawa Heart Institute experts and former patients, enjoying a very informative evening and nice weather.

Stay tuned for the announcement of the next Meet the Expert event, which could also include live social media interaction.