News from the Office of Women’s Health
Winter 2001


Third Annual Women's Health Conference a Success with Illinois Health Organizations

The third annual Women's Health Conference conducted by the Illinois Department of Public Health, Office of Women's Health, drew 400 participants many of them leaders of health organizations throughout Illinois who came to learn more about and to address women's health issues. The conference was held at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont, Illinois, on October 23-24, 2001. Train-the-trainer pre-conference workshops offered health professionals tips on how to use educational kits on topics such as smoking cessation, cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, arthritis and outreach in hair salons.

Plenary sessions included presentations by Dr. Carolyn Clancy of the Center for Outcomes and Effective Research on women's health access; by Dr. Craig Jordan and Dr. Monica Morrow of the Lynn Sage Breast Cancer Research Program on new advances in the treatment and prevention of breast cancer, as well as management options for ductal carcinoma in situ; and by Dr. Jean Kilbourne on the selling of addiction to women.   Dr. Kilbourne's humorous, but poignant message highlighted how advertisers and media selectively target women in selling addictive products and examined the use of sex role stereotypes to undermine self-esteem and to encourage addiction. This timely message came alongside the recent release of the U.S. Surgeon General's 2001 report on women and smoking, which reveals that lung cancer is now the leading cause of cancer deaths in women, not to mention the many other smoking-related deaths.

Women's Health Subject of Multi-County Symposium

In June, 150 women from across central and southern Illinois met in Effingham to hear about health issues particular to women. Choosing a healthy lifestyle, time management, stress reduction and physical activity were some of the topics covered at the symposium. Women of all ages participated in the free symposium, which also featured blood pressure, cholesterol and body fat screening. Local vendors displayed their products and services, including free massages for some participants!

National speaker and author Barb Bancroft, a nurse practitioner, spoke about the health of today's woman. "Women don't realize the leading causes of death in women are heart disease and lung cancer often diseases we behave ourselves into. So choosing a healthy lifestyle is one way to improve one's chances of living long and well," Ms. Bancroft said. She took a humorous look at the barriers women face in their busy lives and how they can overcome them and live life to the fullest.

In addition to the Illinois Department of Public Health, sponsors of the event were the Clay County Health Department, East Central Illinois Breast and Cervical Cancer Program, Effingham County Health Department, Fayette County Health Department, Jasper County Health Department, Marion County Health Department, Midland Area Agency on Aging, St. Mary's Good Samaritan Hospital, Shelby County Health Department and Washington County Health Department. 

Office of Women's Health Reaches Out to Latina Women

Latina women's health conference participants taste the vegetarian tamales prepared by Rosa Pedroza of Near North Health Service Corporation during a nutritious food preparation demonstration.

The first state-sponsored conference on Latina women's health presented in Spanish was hosted by IDPH in Chicago on September 28, 2001. The one-day conference, titled "Mejorando la Salud de la Mujer Latina" ("Improving the Health of the Latina Woman"), was conducted in collaboration with more than 15 Chicago Hispanic community organizations. Over 400 women from Hispanic neighborhoods throughout Chicago attended the free conference. The aim of the conference was to educate Latina women about health issues that are of particular concern to them through workshops, demonstrations and educational exhibits. Many are unaware that health disparities exist between ethnic groups and that diseases such as diabetes and HIV/AIDS affect a greater proportion of Hispanic women than the white population. Workshop topics included self esteem, nutrition, mental health, menopause, breast and cervical cancer, exercise and sexual health. Especially popular were the demonstrations by Luis L¢pez, president and chef of New Market Caterers, and Erlinda Binghay and Rosa Pedroza of Near North Health Service Corporation on how to cook tasty vegetarian tamales and low-fat rice and beans.  Yolanda V zquez of the Chicago Hispanic Health Coalition had all participants dancing to the beat of Latin rhythms to improve cardiovascular fitness. One conference participant summed it up in her conference evaluation by saying, "I learned the importance of health for a better life, not only for myself, but also for my family."

Organizations that partnered with IDPH on this event include Access Living, Community Health, Chicago Department of Public Health, Chicago Hispanic Health Coalition, Eli Lilly and Company, Erie Family Health Center, Illinois Department of Public Health - Office of Hispanic/Latino Affairs, Illinois Health Education Consortium/AHEC, National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Norwegian American Hospital, Pilsen-Little Village Community Mental Health Center, University of Illinois at Chicago - Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Health Research and Policy Centers, Midwest Latino Health Research and Policy Center, Urban Health Program, St. Anthony Hospital, St. Elizabeth Hospital, Swedish Covenant Hospital, federal Social Security Administration and Y-ME National Breast Cancer Organization- Chicagoland.


Did you know...

  • More women die from coronary heart disease (CHD) than any other disease. Heart disease claimed the lives of 503,927 U.S. women in 1998. In fact, almost twice as many women died from heart disease in 1998 than all cancers combined (259,467 cancer deaths; 64,475 from lung cancer; 41,737 from breast cancer; 153,255 other cancers).
  • One in five women has some form of heart or blood vessel disease.
  • Although heart disease has been declining sharply among men in the past 20 years, for women it has barely changed ("Harvard Women's Health Watch," Volume VIII, Number 5, January 2001).
  • Compared to men who have heart attacks, women often die quicker or are more prone to another heart attack. Women are more likely than men to die within the year following a heart attack (38 percent of women vs. 25 percent of men). During the first six years after a recognized heart attack, 35 percent of women will have a second heart attack, while only 18 percent of men will have a heart attack. (American Heart Association data)
  • From 1991 to 1995, black females had the highest death rates from heart disease among women, at 553 deaths per 100,000 women, followed by white women (388 deaths per 100,000), Hispanic women (265 deaths per 100,000), American Indian and Alaska Native women (259 deaths per 100,000) and Asian and Pacific Islander women (221 deaths per 100,000). (Casper M.L. et. al., Women and Heart Disease: An Atlas of Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Mortality, Second Edition, Office for Social Environment and Health Research, West Virginia University, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion and Centers for Disease Control, Morgantown, WV, December 2000.)

How does Illinois fare among states with regard to heart disease?

The table below shows how Illinois heart disease death rates compare to national death rates for all women and for each race or ethnicity. Next to each Illinois rate, the Illinois ranking among states is shown in parenthese.

State Profile - Illinois

Population 1995

Heart Disease Death Rate,1991-1995*

Race or Ethnicity




All Women 35 and over


429 (35)


American Indian and
Alaska Native Women
5,544 114 (4) 259
Asian and Pacific
Islander Women
81,436 179 (14) 221
Black Women 406,616 610 (40) 533
Hispanic Women 163,766 195 (19) 265
White Women 2,559,885 407 (35) 388
*Average annual age-adjusted rate (deaths per 100,000) for women
ages 35 years and older. Data for Hispanics are also included within
each of the four categories of race.
**The state having the lowest death rate was ranked 1, while the state
with the highest rate was ranked 51.

(Source: Casper M.L. et. al., Women and Heart Disease: An Atlas of Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Mortality, Second Edition, 2000.)

Knowing the Signs, Minimizing the Risks
(Excerpts taken from "Women and Heart Disease: Learn to listen to the subtle signs. They could save your life", by Todd Murphy, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, The Office on Women's Health, Feb. 2000)

The biggest killer. In an era when many women dread breast, ovarian, and uterine cancer, most don't recognize a jolting reality: As many women die from heart disease as from all cancers combined. One in eight women will develop breast cancer over the course of her life; one in 25 will die of it. But one in three women will die of coronary heart disease, or heart attack. Heart disease is, by far, the biggest killer of women 55 and older.

A woman's risk of heart disease is lower than a man's risk earlier in life (before menopause). But by the time she reaches 60, a woman has as much chance of having a heart attack as a man. Yet most women are surprised by these facts. They don't understand how dangerous heart problems can be or what can place them at risk for developing heart disease. Women also don't understand symptoms that suggest possible heart problems and how their symptoms can differ from those seen in men.  What's worse, many doctors don't know the facts, either. A national survey in 1996 found that nearly two-thirds of the nation's primary care physicians inaccurately reported there was no difference between women and men in the symptoms, warning signs and diagnosis of heart disease. And even when a woman's heart disease symptoms are similar to a man's, a primary care doctor is more likely to tell her that the symptoms are psychological or emotional. If the patient is a man, the doctor is twice as likely to send him on for further testing. "Everyone's level of suspicion is just, in general, lower for women even though it shouldn't be," says Dr. Rita Redberg, a cardiologist at the University of California-San Francisco Medical Center. The result is that women are treated for heart disease much later in their lives than men. And tragically, it shows. At older ages, women who have heart attacks are twice as likely as men to die within a few weeks, in many cases, because problems had been allowed to progress without treatment. Fortunately, more and more doctors are learning about the angers for women. And more heart research, most of which has traditionally been done only on men, now includes women. Still, the misconceptions abound. And they kill. A little knowledge can save your life.

A different kind of pain. The first thing women should know and which, too, many primary care doctors do not know is this: While some warning signs for heart problems in women can be the same as in men, women often experience symptoms that most people don't think to associate with heart attacks. "A woman may never have chest pain at all and still have serious heart disease," says Dr. Elizabeth Ross, a Washington, D.C., cardiologist and author of Healing the Female Heart.  There are other symptoms that are much more common in women. Often, since women don't associate some of these lesser known symptoms with heart problems, they don't do anything about them. Or, if they do see a doctor, their doctor doesn't associate the symptoms with possible heart problems. "Many women come in with these symptoms and go from doctor to doctor before finally being diagnosed," said Dr. Nieca Goldberg, chief of the Women's Heart Program at the Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City and a spokesperson for the American Heart Association. And the complications don't end there.

The treadmill cardiac stress test doctors often use as the first check for heart problems produces many more "false positives" in women than in men. That means the results seem to show heart problems where there are none. Because of this discrepancy, doctors sometimes discount positive results in women endangering those who have real heart problems. "A negative test is a good indicator the woman doesn't have heart disease; a positive test should be followed up with other tests that better check for heart disease in women," says Dr. Debra Judelson, a cardiologist and former president of the American Medical Women's Association. Too often, the follow-up test doesn't get done and the heart disease quietly progresses unchecked.

The risk factors. The solution is simple, experts say. Women need to know the signs of possible problems. And sometimes, you may need to help educate your physician and demand proper testing for heart problems if you have reason to suspect problems. But women need to understand more than just the symptoms of a crisis, of course. They need to know their risk factors for developing heart problems and to know how those risk factors can be dealt with or avoided. They need to know how to prevent problems before they develop. However, not all risk factors can be changed. The older you get, the more likely you are to develop heart disease. And postmenopausal women are much more likely to develop the disease than premenopausal women. Doctors have long believed that this is because estrogen provides women a natural premenopausal protection against heart disease. However, some recent studies on the use of estrogen for prevention of heart disease in postmenopausal women have led to a controversy on the role of estrogen with regard to heart disease. See box on page which discusses this controversy in further detail.

(Note to typesetter: Please put the correct page number into the paragraph above depending on where the box discussing the controversy of hormone replacement therapy is placed) Your risk of heart disease is greater if close family members have had it. Also, African Americans have the same risk of heart disease as white Americans, but they are more likely to have higher blood pressure. Hispanics have a lower risk of heart attack than whites. Women with diabetes have double the risk of having a heart attack than women who do not have the disease. But there's a lot women can do, either to compensate for risk factors or to steer clear of risk factors that can be avoided.

Stop smoking

Smoking is the single greatest cause of preventable death in the United States, and is more of a risk factor for heart disease in women than it is in men. A woman who smokes runs from two to six times the risk of having a heart attack and is more likely than a non-smoker to die from the attack. In addition, premenopausal women who smoke and use oral contraceptives are anywhere from 20 to 40 times more likely to have a heart attack than those who do not.

Oral contraceptives alone pose little additional risk for healthy, premenopausal women if they are of the low dose variety (< 50 micrograms of estrogen). However, taking any type of birth control pill may pose some risk for those with high blood pressure, diabetes or problems with blood clots, heart attacks or stroke. High dose oral contraceptives (> 50 micrograms of estrogen) do pose an increased risk of heart disease for women, especially those who smoke.

Eat right and monitor your cholesterol

A woman's total blood cholesterol level is less important in evaluating her risk of heart disease than a man's. But two other things are more important. One is the ratio of the level of her HDL cholesterol - the "good" cholesterol - to the level of her LDL cholesterol - the "bad" cholesterol. High levels of HDL, which seem to clear cholesterol out of your system, lower your risk for heart disease. Lower levels of HDL appear to be a stronger heart disease risk factor for women than for men.

The other important factor is the level of triglycerides, another fat substance in the body. The triglyceride level seems to play a greater role in determining the risk of heart disease for women than it does for men.

Watch your weight

About 55 percent of adult Americans or 97 million people are overweight or obese, according to figures released in June by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Obesity increases strain on your heart, raises blood cholesterol, blood pressure and triglyceride levels, and can induce diabetes.  The easiest and best way for women to deal with these issues is to eat smart. The American Heart Association recommends that adults get no more than 30 percent of their daily total calories from fat, and that they especially watch their intake of cholesterol and saturated fat. Women who have a high percentage of fat in their diet also have high levels of total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol and triglycerides. Some women, especially those who have already been diagnosed with heart disease, may need to take cholesterol-lowering drugs. To date, the most common cholesterol-lowering drugs have been free of serious side effects. But women shouldn't use one of the main classes of drugs, the statin drugs, if they are pregnant or have active or chronic liver disease.


Dr. Ross often conjures up for patients an imaginary "miracle cure" that lowers their blood sugar and blood pressure, improves their cholesterol levels, helps strengthen their bones, reduces stress and helps them lose weight and sleep better.   The miracle? "It's exercise," Dr. Ross says. Physical inactivity nearly doubles your risk for heart disease. And exercise doesn't have to mean running mini-marathons every month. You can gain substantial health benefits from doing just 30 minutes of a moderate-level activity, such as walking, gardening or yardwork, every day.

The Controversy of Hormone Replacement Therapy and Its Effect on Heart Disease

The use of estrogen replacement therapy (ERT) or hormone replacement therapy (HRT) for postmenopausal women to reduce the risk of heart disease is currently under debate.   Studies have recently researched the use of ERT/HRT for primary prevention, as well as secondary prevention of heart disease. Primary prevention is the prevention of heart disease in women with no previous history of heart disease, while secondary prevention is the prevention of heart disease in women who have a previous history of heart disease. Some of these studies of ERT/HRT show a reduction of the risk of heart disease in women who do not have established heart disease, while other studies show a non-significant increase in risk in the first year, but a lower risk in subsequent years. Recent studies of women who have established heart disease showed an increased risk for cardiovascular events in the first year, which then dropped off after the first year. Other recent studies also showed that ERT and HRT do not slow the buildup of fatty deposits in the coronary arteries in women who already have heart disease.  Since ERT and HRT have other beneficial effects such as relief of menopausal symptoms and the prevention of osteoporosis that can lead to fractures, including hip fractures, the current recommendations of the American Heart Association on the use of ERT and HRT are as follows:

For women who already have cardiovascular disease (CVD)

  • Estrogen replacement therapy (ERT) or hormone replacement therapy (HRT) should not be initiated for secondary prevention of CVD.
  • The decision to continue or stop ERT/HRT in women with CVD who have been undergoing long-term estrogen therapy should be based on established noncoronary benefits and risks and patient preference.
  • If a woman develops an acute CVD event, such as a heart attack or stroke, or is immobilized while undergoing ERT/HRT, there is an increased risk of blood clots. It is prudent to consider discontinuing ERT/HRT or to consider anticoagulant treatment while she is hospitalized to minimize this risk. Reinstating ERT/HRT should be based on established noncoronary benefits and risks, as well as patient preference.

For women who do not have cardiovascular disease (CVD)

  • Firm clinical recommendations for primary prevention await the results of ongoing, randomized clinical trials.
  • There is insufficient data to suggest that ERT/HRT should be initiated for the sole purpose of primary prevention of CVD.
  • Initiation and continuation of ERT/HRT should be based on established noncoronary benefits and risks, possible coronary benefits and risks, and patient preference.

For more information on women and heart disease, contact

American Heart Association
Phone 312-346-4675 or 1-800-677-5481

National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute
Phone 301-592-8573

Women and Smoking: A Target for Big Tobacco
(Excerpts adapted from Women and Smoking: A Report of the Surgeon General, U.S. Centers for
Disease Control, 2001.)

According to the Surgeon General's 2001 Report on Women and Smoking approximately 165,000 women died prematurely in 1999 from smoking-related diseases such as lung cancer and heart disease. That makes smoking the leading known cause of preventable death and disease in women. What is also interesting is that, over the years, the tobacco industry has creatively targeted its marketing at women and continues to do so to this day.

History of Advertising Strategies

Tobacco advertising geared toward women began in the 1920s. By the mid-1930s, cigarette advertisements targeting women were becoming so commonplace that one advertisement for the mentholated Spud brand had the caption "To read the advertisements these days, a fellow'd think the pretty girls do all the smoking."

As early as the 1920s, tobacco advertising geared toward women included messages such as "Reach for a Lucky instead of a sweet" to establish an association between smoking and slimness. The positioning of Lucky Strike as an aid to weight control led to a greater than 300 percent increase in sales for this brand in the first year of the advertising campaign.

Through World War II, Chesterfield advertisements regularly featured glamour photographs of a Chesterfield girl of the month, usually a fashion model or a Hollywood star such as Rita Hayworth, Rosalind Russell or Betty Grable.

The number of women ages 18 through 25 years who began smoking increased significantly in the mid-1920s, the same time that the tobacco industry mounted the Chesterfield and Lucky Strike campaigns directed at women. The trend was most striking among women ages 18 though 21. The number of women in this age group who began smoking tripled between 1911 and 1925 and had more than tripled again by 1939.

In 1968, Philip Morris marketed Virginia Slims cigarettes to women with an advertising strategy showing canny insight into the importance of the emerging women's movement. The slogan "You've come a long way, Baby" later gave way to "It's a woman thing" in the mid- 1990s and, more recently, the "Find your voice" campaign featuring women of diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds. The underlying message of these campaigns has been that smoking is related to women's freedom, emancipation and empowerment.

Initiation rates among girls ages 14 though 17 years rapidly increased in parallel with the combined sales of the leading women's-niche brands (Virginia Slims, Silva Thins and Eve) during this period.

In 1960, about 10 percent of all cigarette advertisements appeared in popular women's magazines; by 1985, cigarette advertisements in these publications had increased by 34 percent.

Current Tactics of Tobacco Companies

Women have been and continue to be extensively targeted in tobacco marketing. Such marketing is dominated by an association between social desirability and independence and smoking; these messages are conveyed through advertisements featuring slim, attractive and athletic models. In 1999, expenditures for domestic cigarette advertising and promotion was $8.24 billion, an increase of 22.3 percent from the $6.73 billion spent in 1998. Such advertising is used, in part, to allay women's fear of the health risks from smoking by presenting information on reduced nicotine and tar content or by using positive images (e.g., models engaged in exercise or pictures of white capped mountains against a background of clear blue skies).

The tobacco industry also has targeted women through innovative promotional campaigns offering discounts on common household items unrelated to tobacco or using special packaging techniques to publicize cigarette products. The following examples illustrate some of these methods:

  • Philip Morris has offered discounts on turkeys, milk, soft drinks and laundry detergent with the purchase of tobacco products.
  • Cigarette brand clothing and other giveaway accessories have been used to promote cigarette products to women and girls.
  • Virginia Slims offered a yearly engagement calendar and the V-Wear catalog featuring clothing, jewelry and accessories coordinated with the themes and colors of the print advertising and product packaging.
  • Capri Superslims used point-of-sale displays and value-added gifts featuring items such as mugs and caps bearing the Capri label in colors coordinated with the advertisement and packaging.
  • Misty Slims offered color-coordinated items in multiple-pack containers. The manufacturer also offered an address book, cigarette lighter, T-shirt and fashion booklet.

In addition, coverage of the health effects of tobacco on women has been stifled since the media rely on revenues from tobacco advertising. For example, very little coverage has been given to lung cancer among women as compared to breast cancer. However lung cancer causes 27,000 more deaths in women than breast cancer annually, with only a 13 percent five-year survival rate, as compared to a 96 percent five-year survival rate for breast cancer. Michigan researcher Ken Warner found that the more tobacco-ad dollars that women's magazines take in, the less coverage they give to the harmful effects of smoking. Sadly, only a handful of women's magazines decline the tobacco advertising that undermines the health of their readers. Likewise, many other women's advocacy groups are often silent about the harmful effects of smoking because they too are funded by the tobacco companies. Some women's groups that receive funding from tobacco companies include the Congressional Caucus for Women's Issues, the Women's Research and Education Institute, the National Women's Political Caucus, the Women's Campaign Fund, Women Executives in State Government, the National Council for Research on Women, Catalyst and the National Museum for Women in the Arts. (Williams, Marjorie, "This Kills Women. Do feminist groups even care?", Washington Post, Wednesday, April 11, 2001, p. A27) For instance, Philip Morris is one of the largest private funders of programs for battered women. Many of us have seen the emotion-filled TV commercials showing the support given by Philip Morris to domestic violence victims. However, these commercials fail to mention the thousands of women killed by tobacco each year. 

Other facts about women and smoking:

  • Diseases caused by smoking include lung cancer, coronary heart disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, cancer of the oropharynx and bladder cancer. Smoking also increases the risk of other cancers (liver, colorectal, cervical, pancreatic, kidney, larynx and esophageal), stroke and subarachnoid hemorrhage, death from ruptured abdominal aortic aneurism, peripheral vascular atherosclerosis, carotid atherosclerosis and osteoporotic fractures (including hip fracture).
  • Other smoking risks to women include reduced lung growth in adolescents, premature decline in lung function, delayed conception, primary and secondary infertility, ectopic pregnancy, spontaneous abortion, pre-term premature rupture of membranes, pre-term delivery and low birth weight, earlier menopause, more menopausal symptoms and low bone density.
  • The decline in smoking among adult women in the 1970s and 1980s stalled in the 1990s, while at the same time rates were rising steeply among teenage girls. Among high school senior girls, 30 percent are smokers, which is about the same as the rate in boys. Nearly all women who smoke started as teenagers.
  • About 140,000 U.S. women die of smoking-related illnesses annually. Tobacco marketers simply replenish their customer base with the hundreds of thousands of teenagers who start smoking every year. The tobacco industry's marketing campaign has been so effective that smoking-related illnesses kill more Americans every year than car accidents, alcohol, AIDS, murders, suicides, drugs and fires combined.
  • Smoking rates among women with less than a high school education are three times higher than for college graduates.
  • As of 1998, smoking prevalence was highest among American Indian or Alaska Native women (34.5 percent), intermediate among white (23.5 percent) and black women (21.9 percent), and lowest among Hispanic (13.8 percent) and Asian or Pacific Islander women (11.2 percent).
  • Smoking is a major cause of coronary heart disease among women. However, risk is substantially reduced within one or two years of smoking cessation.

The incidence of smoking has risen among poor women and is higher among those below the poverty level (29.6 percent) than among those at or above poverty level (21.6 percent). Aside from the health impact, the financial impact of smoking can take its toll on families. In New York City, a family with two parents who each smoke two packs a day could pay $140 a week for cigarettes, or roughly $600 per month. That's more than 40 percent of the income of a family of four living at the poverty line.

It is time health professionals, businesses, women's groups and the average citizen take a stand against the shrewd tactics of big tobacco. Following are 10 suggestions from the U.S. surgeon general to reduce smoking among women.

1. Increase awareness of the devastating impact of smoking on women's health.
2. Expose and counter the tobacco industry's deliberate targeting of women and decry its efforts to link smoking, which is so harmful to women's health, with women's rights and progress in society.
3. Encourage a more vocal constituency on issues related to women and smoking.
4. Recognize that nonsmoking is by far the norm among women.
5. Conduct further studies of the relationship between smoking and certain outcomes of importance to women's health.
6. Encourage the reporting of gender-specific results from studies of influences on smoking behavior, smoking prevention and cessation interventions and the health effects of tobacco use, including the use of new tobacco products.
7. Determine why, during most of the 1990s, smoking prevalence declined so little among women and increased so markedly among teenage girls.
8. Develop a research and evaluation agenda related to prevention and cessation programs targeting women.
9. Support efforts, at both individual and societal levels, to reduce smoking and exposure to environmental tobacco smoke among women.
10. Enact comprehensive statewide tobacco control programs proven to be effective in reducing and preventing tobacco use.

A full copy of Women and Smoking: A Report of the Surgeon General, 2001 and other related information is available on the CDC Web site, .


Office of Women's Health Grant Program Highlights

In July, Governor George H. Ryan announced $2,123,800 in grants to local health departments and other organizations to address the special problems that women face at every stage of life. A total of 67 grants were awarded in two categories: women's health initiatives received $1,459,000 and osteoporosis awareness and prevention received $664,800. Of the 67 grants funded, 47 were new grants and 20 were continuation grants. Over the past year, the Office of Women's Health (OWH) partnered with the University of Illinois at Chicago Center of Excellence in Women's Health to evaluate fiscal year 2000 grant programs and to identify those that were effective and can be replicated by other agencies. Eight model programs were identified to address the fiscal year 2002 priorities of cardiovascular disease, eating disorders, menopause, osteoporosis and women's health coalition building. The use of these model programs will allow OWH to better enable grantees to conduct successful programs, to document the impact of these grant programs on the health of women in the state of Illinois and to assess the ability to replicate these programs. All new fiscal year 2002, non- continuation grants are implementing one of the eight model programs.

Fiscal Year 2002 Continuation Grants and Project Contacts

Breast Cancer
Sarah Bush Lincoln
Linda Kimball
200 Richmond Ave. East
Mattoon, IL 61938
Phone 217-258-2573

Cardiovascular Disease
Adams County Health Department
Julie Aamoth
333 N. Sixth St.
Quincy, IL 62301
Phone 217-222-8440

Oak Park Department of Public Health
Lisa Pearce
123 Madison St.
Oak Park, IL 60302
Phone 708-358-5488

Rush Presbyterian/St. Luke's Medical Center
Claudia Baier
1725 W. Harrison
Chicago, IL 60612
Phone 312-942-4464

Winnebago County Health Department
Ginny Penzi
401 Division St.
Rockford, IL 61104
Phone 815-962-5092

Domestic Violence
Erie Family Health Center
Drea Chaitin-Richards
1701 W. Superior St.
Chicago, IL 60622
Phone 312-491-2400

PCC Community Wellness Center
Nina E. Allen
14 W. Lake St.
Oak Park, IL 60302
Phone 708-383-0113

Coalition Building Kane County Health Department
Mary Lou England
210 S. Sixth St.
Geneva, IL 60134
Phone 630-208-5122

Healthy Lifestyles
Champaign-Urbana Public Health District
David M. Remmert
710 N. Neil St.
P.O. box 1488
Champaign, IL 61820
Phone 217-373-7901

Healthy Families Chicago
Linda Rahman
3333 W. Arthington St., Suite 150
Chicago, IL 60624
Phone 773-638-0111

Roseland Christian Health Ministries
Dedra Turner
9718 S. Halsted St.
Chicago, IL 60628
Phone 773-233-4100

Sinai Community Institute
Gloria Brinkley
2653 W. Ogden Ave.
Chicago, IL 60608
Phone 773-257-4796

St. Clair County Health Department
Whitney Steele
19 Public Square, Suite 150
Belleville, IL 62220
Phone 618-233-7703, ext. 4415

Tazewell County Health Department
Amy Tippey
21306 lll. Rte. 9
Tremont, IL 61568
Phone 309-925-5511, ext. 263


Asian Human Services
Jing Zhang, Ph.D.
4735 N. Broadway, Suite 700
Chicago, IL 60640
Phone 773-728-2235

Decatur Memorial Hospital
Teresa Larson
2300 N. Edward St.
Decatur, IL 62526
Phone 217-876-2381

Jackson County Health Department
Angie Bailey
415 Health Department Road
P.O. Box 307
Murphysboro, IL 62966
Phone 618-684-3143

Knox County YMCA
B.J. Wilken
1324 W. Carl Sandburg Drive
Galesburg, IL 61401
Phone 309-344-1324

Pike County Health Department
Nancy Halpin
113 E. Jefferson St.
Pittsfield, IL 62363
Phone 217-285-4407

University of Illinois, Chicago
Stacie Geller, Ph.D.
809 S. Marshfield Ave., M/C 551
Chicago, IL 60612
Phone 217-355-0467

Fiscal Year 2002 Model Program Grants and Project Contacts

Cardiovascular Disease

Heart Smart for Teens
Chicago Commons
Josephine Robinson
1335 W. 51st St.
Chicago, IL 60609
Phone 773-376-5242

Frankfort Community School (Dist. 168)
Karla J. Lee
112 W. Poplar St.
West Frankfort, IL 62896
Phone 618-937-2421

Girl Scouts-Fox Valley Council
Heather Day
200 New Bond St.
Aurora, IL 60506
Phone 630-897-1565

Henderson County Health Department
Gloria Short, Project Contact
P.O. Box 220
Gladstone, IL 61437
Phone 309-582-3759

Methodist Medical Center of Illinois
Michelle Williams
Department of Medical Imaging
221 N.E. Glen Oak Ave.
Peoria, IL 61636
Phone 309-672-4963

Heart Smart for Women
Bond County Health Department
Aimee Russell
503 S. Prairie St.
Greenville, IL 62246
Phone 618-664-1442

Chicago Department of Public Health
Sibyl Massey
333 S. State St., Room 200
DePaul Center, 2nd Floor
Chicago, IL 60604
Phone 312-747-9899

Crawford County Health Department
Jenna Murray
301 S. Cross, Suite 249
Robinson, IL 62454
Phone 618-544-8798

Discover Health
Pat Darnell
209 S. Main St.
Hillsboro, IL 62049
Phone 217-532-9355

East Side Health Department
Grace Hutchinson
650 N. 20th St.
East St. Louis, IL 62205
Phone 618-271-8722

Jersey County Health Department
Lynn Welling
22416 State Hwy. 109
Jerseyville, IL 62052
Phone 618-498-7176

Mather LifeWays
Linda Hollinger-Smith, Ph.D.
1603 Orrington Ave., Suite 1800
Evanston, IL 60201
Phone 312-942-2761

Peoria City County Health Department
Kate Van Beek
2116 N. Sheridan Road
Peoria, IL 61604
Phone 309-679-6130

Roseland Community Hospital
Rhonda Mundhenk
45 W. 111th St.
Chicago, IL 60628
Phone 773-995-3000

Vision in Progress
Marla Harris
316 N. Bothwell St.
Palatine, IL 60067
Phone 847-776-9500

Washington County Health Department
Erica Blumenstock
177 S. Washington St.
Nashville, IL 62263
Phone 618-327-3644

Whiteside County Health Department
Beth Fiorini
18929 Lincoln Rd.
Morrison, IL 61270
Phone 815-626-2230

Woodford County Health Department
Laurie Schierer
109 S. Major St.
Eureka, IL 61530
Phone 309-467-3064

YWCA of Elgin
Andrea Fiebig
220 E. Chicago St.
Elgin, IL 60120
Phone 847-742-7930

Coalition Building Advocate Trinity Hospital
Vadie Brock-Reese
2320 E. 93rd St.
Chicago, IL 60617
Phone 773-967-5180

Mercer County Hospital
Jennifer Hamerlinck
409 NW Ninth Ave.
Aledo, IL 61231
Phone 309-582-5301

Eating Disorders

Indian Prairie CU School District 204
Millie Shepich
780 Shoreline Dr.
Aurora, IL 60504
Phone 630-375-3560

Shawnee Health Service
Development Corporation
Virginia Donney
101 S. Wall St.
Carbondale, IL 62901
Phone 618-529-2621

Better Bones
Advocate Illinois Masonic-North
Lucy Robles Aquino
836 W. Wellington

Program Development
Chicago, IL 60657
Phone 773-296-7157

Henry County Health Department
Pam Bennett
4424 U.S. Highway 34
Kewanee, IL 61443
Phone 309-852-0197

Jasper County Health Department
Jolyn Bigard
106 East Edward St.
Newton, IL 62448
Phone 618-783-4436

Livingston County Health Department
Linda P. Rhodes
310 E. Torrance
P.O.Box 886
Pontiac, IL 61764
Phone 815-842-7174

Logan County Health Department
Debra Cook
109 3rd St.
P.O. Box 508
Lincoln, IL 62656
Phone 217-735-2317

Mercer County Health Department
Kay Forret
1007 NW Third St.
Aledo, IL 61232
Phone 309-582-3759

Montgomery County Health Department
Dolores Wheelhouse
11191 Ill. Rte. 185
P.O. Box 128
Hillsboro, IL 62049
Phone 217-532-2001

Shelby Memorial Hospital
Mary B. Wills
200 S. Cedar
Shelbyville, IL 62565
Phone 217-774-9584

St. Anthony Medical Center
Diane Hinderliter
5666 E. State St.
Rockford, IL 61108
Phone 815-222-6200

St. Mary's Good Samaritan Inc.
Vicki Vaughn
400 N. Pleasant St.
Centralia, IL 62801
Phone 618-533-1756

Stephenson County Health Department
Sharon Lang
10 W. Linden St.
Freeport, IL 61032
Phone 815-599-8421

Loyola University of Chicago
Pauline M. Camacho, M.D.
2160 S. First Ave.
Maywood, IL 60153
Phone 708-216-8634

Northwestern University
Beatrice J. Edwards, M.D.
633 Clark St.
Evanston, IL 60208
Phone 312-926-7358

St. Elizabeth's Hospital
E. Charles Robacker, M.D.
211 S. Third St.
Belleville, IL 62220
Phone 618-234-2120

Osteoporosis Worksite Education

Cass County Health Department
Nancy Kyrouac
331 S. Main St.
Virginia, IL 62691
Phone 217-452-3057

Dewitt Piat Bi-County Health Department
Connie L. Keelin
910 Ill. Rte. 54 East
P.O. Box 518
Clinton, IL 61727
Phone 217-935-3427

Macoupin County Health Department
Kent Tarro
805 N. Broad St.
Carlinville, IL 62626
Phone 217-854-3223

McHenry County Health Department
Karen Ciesielczyk
2200 N. Seminary Ave.
Woodstock, IL 60098
Phone 815-334-4510

Norwegian American Hospital
Rossana Barrera
1044 N. Francisco Ave.
Chicago, IL 60622
Phone 773-292-2603


Access Community Health Network
Dan Fulwiler
1501 S. California
Chicago, IL 60608
Phone 773-257-6078

Bureau County Health Department
Anne Gramiak
526 Valley Parkway
Princeton, IL 61356
Phone 815-872-5091

Franklin-Williamson Bi-County Health Department
Robin Koehl
120 Express Drive
Marion, IL 62959
Phone 618-993-6455

Lake County Health Department
Pat Garrity
3010 Grand Ave.
Waukegan, IL 60085
Phone 847-360-2922

Marion County Health Department
Emily Gibson
600 E. Main St.
Salem, IL 62881
Phone 618-548-3878

OWH Awarded WISEWOMAN Federal Grant

The Office of Women's Health was recently awarded a WISEWOMAN grant from the U.S.Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The grant will provide $975,000 to design a cardiovascular screening and lifestyle intervention for women who are served by the Illinois Breast and Cervical Cancer Program (IBCCP). Five demonstration sites will be selected for the first year. The grant is renewable for two additional years and may then be made available to other sites in future years.

Penny Severns Breast and Cervical Cancer Grant Applications Available

Fiscal year 2003 applications are available for the Penny Severns Breast and Cervical Cancer Research Fund. The completed applications must be received in the Office of Women's Health by 5 p.m. on Thursday, January 31, 2002. Please contact the Office of Women's Health at 217- 524-6088, or go to the Department's Web site, , to obtain a copy of the application.

Announcing the Powerful Bones Powerful Girls Campaign

The National Bone Health Campaign (NBHC) is launching a multi-year national campaign to promote optimal bone health in girls 9-12 years old to reduce their risk of osteoporosis later in life. The campaign will include a paid print and radio advertising, Radio Disney Live World Tour 2001, a calendar for girls and parents, parent Web content and a Web site for girls who can learn easy ways to get more calcium and be more active . The program will also be collaborating with the Girl Scouts of the USA to incorporate bone-health activities throughout the country. To order free materials, E- mail bulk orders to  or, for single copies, call 1-800-232-4674. For more information, contact Michelle Hoersch of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office on Women's Health at 312-353-8122.

Capacity Building Awards Available

Capacity building mini-grants of up to $2,500 are available for programs currently providing HIV/AIDS services to racial and/or ethnic minorities that wish to organize an activity to enhance the current capability of the organization or to expand existing skills. The mini-grants will be awarded to organizations that meet the following criteria:

  • Have been in existence for at least one year
  • Have a non-profit 501C (3) status of tax exempt agency
  • Have an operating budget on no more than $750,000 annually
  • Currently providing HIV/AIDS services to racial and/or ethnic minorities

For mini-award request form or for more information, contact Abigail D. McCulloch of the U.S. Department of Human Services Congressional Black Caucus at 312-353-4321 or E-mail her at .

The Breast Cancer Forum has a new Web site at Med Help International .

On the Breast Cancer Forum Web site, breast cancer patients and their families can post questions and receive answers to help them make informed treatment decisions. Questions will be answered by medical professionals at the Cleveland Taussig Cancer Center. The Breast Cancer Forum is made possible through an unrestricted medical education grant from Bristol-Myers Squibb.

To visit the Breast Cancer Forum, go to the home page at  and click on "Breast Cancer," listed in the left column of the page.

Healthy Woman newsletter is published quarterly by the ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC HEALTH. Story ideas, suggestions and comments are welcome and should be forwarded to:

Lisa Keeler, editor
Illinois Department of Public Health Office of Women's Health
535 W. Jefferson St.
Springfield, IL 62761
or call 217-524-6088.

George H. Ryan, Governor
John R. Lumpkin, M.D., M.P.H., Director
Illinois Department of Public Health
Sharon Green, Deputy Director Office of Women's Health

Generally, articles in this newsletter may be reproduced in part or in whole by an individual or organization without permission, although credit should be given to the Illinois Department of Public Health. Articles reprinted in this newsletter may require permission from the original publisher. The information provided in this newsletter is a public service. It is not intended to be a substitute for medical care or consultation with your health care provider and does not represent an endorsement by the Office of Women's Health. To be included on the mailing list, call 1-888-522-1282.

Questions? Need Information? Materials? Referrals? Call the Women's Health Line.