May is American Stroke Month

Get Started
This Grab and Go Packet will help you get started promoting American Stroke Month. In it you will find:

  • Fast Facts
  • Sample announcements for a newsletters, blogs, or email lists
  • Sample tweets
  • Sample Facebook messages
  • Additional items available in Dropbox Folder
    • social media visuals, images, infographics, stroke fact sheets
  • Additional resources that may be helpful to you throughout American Stroke Month

Fast Facts: American Stroke Month
The source for these fast facts is the American Heart Association’s 2016 Heart Disease and Stroke Statistics Update, which is compiled annually by the American Heart Association, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the National Institutes of Health and other government sources. The years cited are the most recent available for each statistical category.

  • Someone in the United States has a stroke about once every 40 seconds, and stroke kills someone in the U.S. about once every four minutes.
  • Stroke is the nation’s No. 5 killer, a leading cause of long-term disability, and the 2nd leading cause of dementia. About two-thirds of the total hospitalizations for stroke occur among adults ages 65 and older.
  • In 2010, worldwide prevalence of stroke was 33 million, with 16.9 million people having a first stroke.
  • About 795,000 people have a stroke every year, with stroke killing nearly 129,000 people annually.
  • Stroke causes 1 of every 20 deaths in the U.S.
  • Stroke was the second-leading global cause of death behind heart disease in 2013, accounting for 11.8% of total deaths worldwide.
  • About 77 percent of people who have a first stroke have blood pressure higher than 140/90 mm Hg.
  • African-Americans have nearly twice the risk for a first-ever stroke than white people, and a much higher death rate from stroke.
  • Nearly 80% of strokes can be prevented, and timely access to the latest therapies can greatly reduce disability from stroke.
  • Over the past 10 years, the death rate from stroke has fallen about 34 percent and the number of stroke deaths has dropped about 18 percent.

Sample Announcements for Newsletters, Blogs, or Email Lists
Cut and paste this text into your newsletter, listserv, or media release. Add relevant details and quotes from your organization.

(Option 1) Follow Life’s Simple 7 and Help Prevent a Stroke
Every 40 seconds, someone has a stroke in the U.S., but 80% of all strokes are preventable. You have the power to prevent stroke by controlling your high blood pressure and taking steps to live a healthier lifestyle. This American Stroke Month, join [insert organization name] in educating Americans on how to prevent stroke by following the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Life’s Simple 7 tips:

  1. Manage Blood Pressure
  2. Control Cholesterol
  3. Reduce Blood Sugar
  4. Get Active
  5. Eat Better
  6. Lose Weight
  7. Stop Smoking

Currently, [insert organization name] is implementing a project to [help protect people from tobacco smoke by supporting smoke-free environments; AND/OR increase access to physical activity opportunities; AND/OR increase access to healthy food and beverage options AND/OR help prevent chronic disease risk factors and reduce health disparities through clinical and community linkages]. This project, as part of a larger initiative by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), promotes healthier living, helps prevent chronic diseases, and improves health outcomes in communities around the country. For more information, contact [insert contact information].

(Option 2) 5 Things Everyone Should Know About Stroke
Someone in the United States have a stroke every 40 seconds. Fortunately, stroke is largely treatable if stroke patients receive rapid access to stroke care. Everyone should know the stroke warning signs and the risk factors of stroke. This American Stroke Month, join [insert organization name] in theeffort to teach all Americans the five things everyone should know about stroke.

  1. Stroke risk increases with age, but young adults, children, and even babies in the womb can suffer strokes.
  2. High blood pressure increases risk; about three out of four people who suffer first strokes have high blood pressure.
  3. Anyone can have a stroke, but some are at increased risk. African Americans have nearly twice the risk for a first-ever stroke than Caucasians.
  4. Clot-busting drugs and medical devices have made stroke largely treatable, but every second counts. The faster you are treated, the more likely you are to recover without permanent disability.
  5. Friends can save friends from stroke! Learn to recognize the warning signs of stroke: FAST – Face drooping, Arm weakness, and Speech difficulty mean it’s Time to call 911!

Go to to learn ways you can get involved with American Stroke Month.

(Option 3) You Don’t Need Super Powers to be a Stroke Hero
When it comes to stroke, every second counts! Nearly 2 million brain cells die each minute a stroke remains untreated! This is why rapid access to medical treatment often times make the difference between full recovery and permanent disability. Learn how to identify the warning signs of stroke using the acronym F.A.S.T. (Face drooping, Arm weakness, Speech difficulty, Time to call 9-1-1).

Knowing and sharing F.A.S.T. not only makes you a stroke hero, but it provides stroke survivors with the opportunity to have a lifestyle of quality. Studies show that patients who receive treatment fast have a higher chance at full recovery and preventing permanent disability.

Go to to learn ways you can get involved with American Stroke Month.

(Option 4) Stroke is Preventable, Treatable, and Beatable
Stroke is the fifth leading cause of death in the United States and a leading cause of severe disability. On average, one person dies from stroke every 4 minutes. However, nearly 80% of strokes can be prevented through everyday healthy living steps, and when stroke does strike, rapid response and quick treatment can help people fully recover and prevent permanent disability.

[Insert organization name] encourages you to support American Stroke Month by promoting healthy living and stroke prevention through Life’s Simple 7 tips, and learning and sharing the warning signs of stroke using the acronym F.A.S.T. (Face drooping, Arm weakness, Speech difficulty, Time to call 9-1-1). Together, we can prevent the deaths and disability caused by stroke and create a stroke-free world!

Go to to learn ways you can get involved with American Stroke Month.

Using Twitter for American Stroke Month

Twitter Chats

  • Thursday, May 5, 1 PM ET
    • The CDC, in partnership with the American Medical Group Association, is hosting a Twitter chat to promote Measure Up/Pressure Down® National Day of Action to improve blood pressure control. Find and participate in the chat by using the hashtag #HBPchat
  • Wednesday, May 18, 1 PM ET
    • The American Heart Association is hosting a Twitter Chat to spread the word that that stroke is largely preventable and treatable. Learn more and join the conversation using the hashtag #StrokeChat

Tweet about American Stroke month throughout May using the sample messages below

  • #DYK 80% of all strokes can be prevented. Learn how: #StrokeMonth #Partnering4Health
  • Developing healthy eating habits as a child may reduce stroke risk later in life. #StrokeMonth #Partnering4Health
  • Physical inactivity is associated with a 20% increase in stroke risk. Protect yourself, get active. #StrokeMonth
  • Current smokers have a 2 to 4 time higher risk of stroke. Quit now using #StrokeMonth #Partnering4Health
  • Protect yourself from stroke by following Life’s Simple 7 tips. Learn more: #StrokeMonth #Partnering4Health
  • Know what F.A.S.T. stands for?  #StrokeMonth #Partnering4Health

Using Facebook for American Stroke Month

Pro tip: Once you paste a URL into a post, Facebook automatically creates a linked image with a description. Once that happens, you can delete the original link from the text of your post. This will make your posts look more professional.

  • The bad news? Stroke is the nation’s No. 5 killer, and a leading cause of long-term disability. The good news? 80% of strokes can be prevented by making healthy lifestyle choices and managing health conditions. #StrokeMonth #Partnering4Health
  • Factors such as smoking, lack of physical activity, poor nutrition, and high blood pressure are linked to an increased risk of stroke. Reducing or eliminating these risk factors decreases your risk of stroke and other chronic diseases, and following Life’s Simple 7 tips can help. #StrokeMonth #Partnering4Health
  • When blood pressure rises, it has a domino effect on your health, leading to stroke and other chronic diseases. Know your numbers #StrokeMonth #Partnering4Health
  • Physical inactivity is associated with an overall 20% increase in stroke risk. Make physical activity a part of your family’s routine to reduce your risk of stroke. #StrokeMonth #Partnering4Health
  • (“Cigarette Pack” photo) Current smokers have a 2 to 4 times increased risk of stroke compared with nonsmokers or those who have quit for more than 10 years. Lower your risk of stroke, quit today! Find support by calling 1-800-QUIT-NOW.
  • (“Sip Smarter” photo) A one-serving increase of sugar-sweetened beverage consumption is associated with a 13% increase in the likelihood of ischemic stroke. Protect yourself, sip smarter. #StrokeMonth #Partnering4Health
  • (“F.A.S.T.” image) Learn how to spot a stroke F.A.S.T. – It could save a life, maybe yours. #StrokeMonth #Partnering4Health

Additional items available in the Dropbox Folder
All files available in the American Stroke Month Dropbox Folder

stroke1 stroke2

stroke3 stroke4

stroke5 stroke6 stroke7

Additional Resources

American Stroke Month Campaign Page – American Heart Association | American Stroke Association

Stroke Resource Center – American Heart Association | American Stroke Association

Stroke media materials from the CDC, including:

F.A.S.T. Handout (English) (Spanish)

Million Hearts:

Recent Stroke Science News

  • Number of strokes increase as pollution levels rise. Study Highlights:
    • Stroke may be associated with climate change and air pollution.
    • In a study conducted in the United States and China, the total number of strokes increased as pollution levels rose.
    • Changes in climate may have contributed to the level of air pollution in a region, which in turn contributed to the total number of strokes.