PCNA's Suzanne Hughes to be presented with AHA Healthcare Volunteer of the Year Award

PCNA Clinical Education Project Director to receive national AHA award on June 27th

Akron, Ohio -  Suzanne Hughes, RN, MSN, FAHA, FPCNA, Clinical Education Project Director at the Preventive Cardiovascular Nurses Association (PCNA), will be presented with the American Heart Association's Healthcare Volunteer of the Year Award on June 27th at the AHA's June 2012 Award Luncheon in Dallas, Texas. The American Heart Association's Healthcare Volunteer of the Year recognizes one health care volunteer annually who has rendered outstanding contributions to or achievements in CVD/stroke patient care or improvements in the quality of health care delivery.

Hughes has been the Clinical Education Project Director at the PCNA since 2011 and served as president of the board of directors in 2001. Hughes holds a fellowship in both PCNA and AHA.

Hughes has been an active AHA volunteer for more than three decades. According to Nicole Aiello Sapio, EVP, Great Rivers Affiliate and nominator of this award, Hughes sees her AHA involvement as an extension of her 38-year career in cardiovascular nursing.

“Suzanne Hughes is a highly respected professional who has made many contributions to cardiovascular health and education at the local and national levels,” noted Sapio.

Through her work, Hughes creates a strong link between PCNA and AHA. At PCNA, Hughes leads the development of patient education pieces that follow established plain language and readability standards and features that give patients and the public what they need and want to know in language they can understand. She presented at the 2010 AHA Scientific Sessions where she shared her passion for health education and the critical importance of clear communication- both spoken and written- between health care professionals and patients. She served as a media spokesperson at the event, participating in several interviews about the importance of “patient-centered” communication.

In her community, Hughes has championed the AHA’s Go Red for Women” campaign since the campaign was launched, serving as the speaker at the inaugural Go Red luncheon in Akron in 2007.  Hughes has served on the board of trustees for the Akron Metro chapter for 15 years, and was the first female president of the board from 2007 to 2009.  In 2011, she was honored at the American Heart Association’s gala in Akron as a “Heart Champion” for her contributions to the field. 

Hughes also received the AHA Cardiovascular Nursing Council’s “Clinical Article of the Year” award for her paper “Novel risk factors for cardiovascular disease: emerging connections” in 2000. She also served on the AHA’s Cardiovascular Nursing Council National Subcommittee on Prevention from 2000-2007, chairing the committee from 2003-2006.

About PCNA:
PCNA is the leading nursing organization dedicated to preventing cardiovascular disease through assessing risk, facilitating lifestyle changes, and guiding individuals to achieve treatment goals.  This is accomplished through the integration of public and professional education and advocacy.  For more information visit www.pcna.net