THRIVE: A Wellness Program for Women

Heart disease is the leading cause of death of American women and kills 32% of them. Mortality in women from heart attacks is six times greater than breast cancer, most common in women and second to lung cancer as the leading cause of death for women. African American women with heart disease is 72% higher than for white women and between ages of 55-64 are twice as likely as white women to have a heart attack and 35% more likely to suffer from coronary artery disease. Yet death in itself isn't the biggest problem for women with heart disease. The real trouble is in premature death and disability.

Hunched backs, back pain, and frailty used to be things older women had to accept before doctors knew anything more about osteoporosis. Now, there are steps women and girls can take to avoid such problems.

Depression appears to affect more women than men. The National Institute of Mental Health reports that about 12 million women are affected by a depressive disorder each year.

Autoimmune diseases are a group of disorders in which the immune system attacks the body and destroys or alters tissues. There are more than 80 serious chronic illnesses in this category, including lupus, multiple sclerosis, and type 1 diabetes.

THRIVE (Translating Health Risks and InterVEntions: Women Surviving through Education), a women’s health and wellness program is developed to examine how women may be affected differently by disease symptomology, discuss the uniqueness of diseases and conditions in women, and address disease management and health related issues within the female population through consumer and professionally focused educational and informational programs. The components within the THRIVE program are developed to promote awareness about risk factors, prevention, treatment, research, policy, and advocacy.

Program content is created for participating cities to engage public, private, non-profit, and faith-based sectors to:

  • stimulate research participation;
  • identify, motivate, educate, empower, and join communities; and
  • create sustainable health and wellness collaborative programs.

The programs are developed in collaboration with professional and consumer communities. THRIVE seeks to create academic, private and public partnerships that bring together organizations and individuals whose participation demonstrates that intense community involvement can produce dynamic interaction between the program and community. The programs are developed to measure the benefit derived from participating in these activities, the level of understanding about women’s health, family history, gauge interest levels in participating in clinical research, and to improve health seeking behavior.

THRIVE is a component of the S-THRIVE (Sustained Translation of Health Risk and Interventions to SurVive through Education) Initiative which also includes STRIVE (Sustaining Translation about Health Risk and Interventions to SurVive through Education) a men’s health and wellness program that addresses contributing health factors in the gap in men’s life expectancy and the culture of being male-glorified risky behaviors, values, power, entitlement, and control. The S-THRIVE Initiative aims to publish information gathered around the influence of educational and information programs – utilizing community-based programs that coincide with national efforts – to successfully promote health and wellness awareness and disease prevention and management control. We believe there is an affirmative association between community-based programs and the promotion of health, wellness, and health seeking behavior.