AstraZeneca's latest heart awareness campaign with fitness guru Bob Harper showcases his passion for photography – FiercePharma

AstraZeneca enters its fifth year working with fitness guru and heart attack survivor Bob Harper on the “Survivors Have Heart” program aimed at helping heart attack survivors heal both physically and mentally.
This year, the project added a new dimension by incorporating Harper’s passion for photography into the mix. Survivors Have Heart Second Chance Portraits feature five heart attack survivors who are all training as mentors to work with those who’ve recently had a heart attack. The black-and-white photos challenge the perceptions of a heart attack survivor by showing vibrant, dynamic and strong personalities. In addition to the online gallery, there was a public unveiling in New York’s Flatiron Plaza Oct. 22-23.
AZ and Harper also held an exclusive virtual gallery event with a panel discussion on the role peer-to-peer support programs have in the recovery journey. The event featured survivors and representatives from heart advocacy organizations Mended Hearts, WomenHeart and the Preventive Cardiovascular Nurses Association.
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“We really wanted to create something that was a resource for people,” Alex Dyer, AstraZeneca’s executive director of cardiovascular marketing, said. “[Having a heart attack] really rocks their world, and to be able to get support and see others who’ve gone through it and how they’ve managed and are moving on with their lives … is really powerful.”
The portraits will continue to live on the website. The program also has a strong reliance on social media, with the usual suspects—Instagram, Facebook, YouTube and Twitter—featuring strongly. In addition, Harper has been doing the media rounds.
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“Bob’s been a partner from the beginning and a true partner,” Dyer said. “It started in New York with a little event with just people who were some strangers getting together and having conversation with Bob, and it’s just evolved so much more over the years.”
Separate from Survivors Have Heart, Harper is the spokesperson for AZ’s blood thinner Brilinta. In 2011, Brilinta was granted approval as a preventive for secondary cardiovascular events. Last year, the drug received two more green lights, first to reduce the chance of a first heart attack or stroke in certain high-risk patients and then for use with aspirin to reduce the risk of a second stroke for certain people with acute ischemic stroke or ministroke.
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