PHA Canada eNewsletter: Vol.4 #12 Dec 2014

November Awareness Month wrap-up

November Awareness Month 2014 was chock-full of member events and achievements! Here are just a few:

-PHA Canada’s Ambassadors achieved 49 proclamations in cities and towns across Canada  

-The ‘Breathe the Night Away’ gala in Edmonton was an incredible success with many attendees and a terrific silent auction, thanks largely to event organizers Lynn-Marie, Stephanie, Terri, Millie and Marcin!

-The first annual Trivia Pub night by Toronto Chapter, held at the Pic-a-deli restaurant in Oakville, ON raised more than $11,300 through a 50/50 draw, silent auction and donations!

-The Masquerade Ball in Calgary (photo above), hosted by Ambassador Gail Nicholson, raised over $10,000 and an enormous amount of awareness for those living with PH.

-We witnessed two very successful awareness events in Ottawa: the 2nd annual “Dine for a Cause”, and 3rd annual 6-minute walk at the Ottawa Heart Institute!

-Nicole Dempsey was featured on CTV for her PHight with PH, Kerry Pierce achieved a deputation in her home community of West Lorne, ON, and Ruth Dolan held a Swim/Walk-a-thon at the Bradford leisure centre, all to educate the public about PH. These ladies are incredible PHA Canada Ambassadors!

In addition to these events, members have raised $7395 through personal pages over the month of November, and Actelion will be contributing $5000 in matching donations! Thank you to everyone for using your PH stories to encourage others to become involved in the cause. This year's Awareness Month was the best yet, and we couldn't have done it without you.

Conference Countdown: Registration opens on January 5th! 
Our May 2015 Conference in Montreal will be here before you know it. Registration will open on January 5th, and brochures are being mailed out mid-December. If you have questions about Conference, please visit our updated Conference website and FAQ page.

One of the best parts of conference is getting to meet, network and learn from others living with PH. To help facilitate this PHA Canada is planning a special networking breakfast where everyone will be able to participate in discussions surrounding various topics of interest. Each table will focus on a particular PH-related topic, and attendees will be able to sit at the table with the discussion in which they’re most interested. If you have topic ideas for this breakfast, please send them to us at

We look forward to seeing you in just 5 short months!

Closed over the Holidays
Please note that PHA Canada’s office will be closed from Wednesday, December 24th through Friday, January 2nd to allow our staff to spend some much needed family time in recognition of the winter holidays. We will not be answering emails or calls during this time. We will be thrilled to get back in touch with you and look forward to continuing to grow with our community in the New Year!

Website task force
PHA Canada is continually working to improve our web presence, because our website provides important PH information and resources to newly diagnosed patients and the wider community. However, we can't do this alone. We're looking for individuals who have visited our website to comment on how easy it is to use, what is difficult about it, and how we can make it better. As we make improvements we are also looking for members of the task force to navigate the updated site to ensure it is user-friendly. You don't have to be a computer expert to contribute: if you have thoughts on how we can improve, we want to hear from you! Please email Bronwyn at to help.   

Introducing our Ambassadors: Sandy

This month’s PHA Canada Ambassador is Sandy from Boisbriand. “I was diagnosed with idiopathic PH in 2012 after being told for almost 5 years that I was probably tired and short of breath because of my pregnancies. I was only 27.  I am mother to Loryane, 6, and Ludovik, 2. Prior to diagnosis, I was a daycare teacher and specialized educator for 10 years. I now enjoy raising my own children, although I miss my work almost every day. I am very fortunate to be a true responder to calcium channel blockers, which means my PH is under control with high doses of nifedipine. I am glad to be involved with our Québec PH Foundation, HTAPQ , and on my daughter’s school Council and foundation. I spend a lot of time looking for new patients in need of encouragement and support, and trying to send them to the right places. I look forward to learning new ways to raise awareness of PH.”

Novel Surgical CTEPH Treatment Approach Cures Disease
Vanderbilt Heart & Vascular Institute (VHVI) is offering a novel and specialized surgical approach for treating patients suffering from chronic thromboembolic pulmonary hypertension (CTEPH)

Magnetic resonance imaging may aid detection of pulmonary hypertension
Cardiac MR imaging represents a diagnostic alternative to echocardiography in the evaluation and diagnosis of PAH, and is associated with a high sensitivity and specificity in the evaluation of other cardiac conditions.

PH Awareness at the Leisure Centre
Pulmonary Hypertension is a rare, debilitating, progressive and potentially fatal disease, affecting up to 10,000 Canadians – although it’s hard to know for sure.

Stocking stuffers from the PHA Canada store! 
If you’re looking to give meaningful gifts this Christmas, why not visit PHA Canada’s online store? We have beautiful beaded bracelets, keychains, lapel pins and many more items, all of which promote PH awareness and also benefit PHA Canada. Check out our offerings today at

Want to make a bigger impact this holiday season? Some of our phriends like PHA Canada Ambassador Tarya are requesting donations to be made to PHA Canada in lieu of gifts. The truth is that most of us don’t need more stuff, but our community always needs more connection. Gifts to PHA Canada’s scholarship or research fund can be made online at or through your own personal fundraising page.

Sensational sauces! 

Learn more about low sodium, plant-based eating at

Yummy Sauce
1 15 oz. can of cannellini beans – rinsed and drained 
¼ C lemon juice and zest skin
½ C water
2 Tbs salt-free stone ground mustard
¾ oz pitted dates (I use Medjool dates)
1 clove of garlic
Combine all ingredients in blender until smooth. Heat and serve over steaming veggies and rice!

Purple Passion Sauce
1 lb purple cauliflower –washed, trimmed, cored and steam in microwave for ~ 7 mins
Place cauliflower in blender with:
½ C lemon juice with zest
1 clove of garlic
3 Deglet Noor dates or Medjool dates
2 tBsp of stone ground mustard
Up to ½ C Water (depending on desired thickness)
Blend until creamy and store in mason jar for refrigeration after use.

The Pulse 

Happy Holidays to all! More community events to come in the New Year.

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