Donya Currie is the editor of The Free Lance-Star's Healthy Life section and Healthy Life Virginia newsletter.

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Heart clinic recognized

Last fall, Isabelle Amann of the Virginia Heart and Vascular Institute’s Heart Failure Clinic wrote a column for Healthy Living in which she described heart failure’s symptoms, treatment and impact on quality of life. Amann, the clinic’s nurse practitioner, also told readers about the clinic, which opened in 2009 as a way to increase patients’ quality of life and reduce the need for repeated hospital stays.

For its efforts, the clinic recently won the Virginia Hospital & Healthcare Association’s 2011 Community Benefit Award.

“The clinic aims to empower patients to take control of their condition and self-manage some of their care,” Amann wrote of the clinic, a joint effort of VHVI and Mary Washington Hospital.

Patients are seen in the clinic within five days of being in the hospital, and they are seen regardless of their ability to pay.

To read Amann’s column, visit

To learn more about the clinic, visit