Mental Health KC Presents…

Mental Health KC Presents is a series of free webinars intended to extend the education and training provided by the Mental Health KC Conference.

Trainings and Webinars

Heart Health: Understanding the connection between physical and mental health

Presenter: Dana Fifer

Thursday, February 9, 2023 12:00-1:00pm Central Time (US and Canada)

February is American Heart month. Did you know that every year more than 600,000 Americans die from heart disease? Heart disease affects all people, regardless of age, gender and ethnicity. People who experience mental health illness, are at increased risk of developing heart related issues, including heart disease. Research has shown that a person diagnosed with depression, as an example, are twice as likely to develop heart disease. Understanding the need for taking care of the whole person is essential in reducing risk factors for heart disease. Identifying the risk factors, leads to improved preventative care measures and increases life expectancy. In addition to identifying risk factors, learning how to manage heart health can help lower the risk of heart disease. Healthier eating, increasing physical activity, lowering stress, managing blood pressure and lowering cholesterol are beneficial ways to protect the heart and treat a person holistically.

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Dana Fifer

My name is Dana Fifer. I have my Master’s in Nursing and have been a Registered Nurse for 25+ years. In my nursing career, I have worked as a floor nurse, home health nurse, and for the past 15 years, I have been in nursing management. My recent experience includes being a Chief Nursing Officer (CNO) for a local, metro hospital. This experience has provided me opportunities to lead a team of nurses and work with many physicians to provide optimal care and outcomes for patients.

In my career, I have worked with many patients with varied health histories. Patients with cardiovascular issues, as well as diabetes, for example, has prompted me to explore more nursing research and ultimately led me into management where I have the opportunity to teach nurses and patients about preventative measures and to ensure we are treating patients holistically. Understanding that many patients are also dealing with stressors, such as anxiety, depression, or a serious mental illness, has prompted me to teach nurses and patients about the importance of treating the “whole person”.

My desire to work with a team of nurses who work with clients with chronic health conditions and mental health illness brought me to Tri-County as the Director for Healthcare Home. Treating a person holistically is a true passion of mine. Healthcare Home (HCH) is part of an interdisciplinary approach to care and integrating care for chronic health conditions. Healthcare Home promotes and encourages wellness, healthy lifestyles, preventative care and help clients manage their chronic health conditions along with their mental health with the “whole person” healthcare approach.

Outside of my nursing career, I am married, and I have five children. I currently have four grandchildren and we are expecting our fifth grandchild in April! I am also a certified Zumba instructor! I truly enjoy dancing and helping others find their inner dancer and enjoy a healthier lifestyle, all while having a great time!

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