Renowned Rwandan Health Advocate Appointed to World Thrombosis Day Global Steering Committee as Inaugural Patient Representative
April 1st, 2019
CHAPEL HILL, NC, USA – April 1, 2019 — The International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis (ISTH) today announced that Christine Ashimwe from Kigali, Rwanda, has been appointed as the inaugural patient representative of the World Thrombosis Day (WTD) Steering Committee. Recognized on 13 October, WTD focuses attention on the often overlooked and misunderstood condition of thrombosis. With thousands of educational events in countries around the world and a global reach of more than 3 billion each year, the campaign and its partners place a global spotlight on thrombosis as an urgent and growing health problem.
Ashimwe is a five-time survivor of venous thromboembolism (VTE) and serves as the Founder and Executive Director of the Rwanda Clot Awareness Network, an organization of more than 100 patients, advocates, researchers and healthcare professionals in Rwanda dedicated to increasing public awareness and education about thrombosis. Ashimwe was recognized for her advocacy efforts by receiving the WTD 2018 Ambassador of the Year Award from the ISTH in October 2018. She is also a recipient of the 2019 Rwandan Women of Courage Award on behalf of the United States Embassy.
“As the WTD campaign continues to evolve, the Steering Committee recognized the enormous need to include the patient voice across all aspects of the campaign,” said Beverley Hunt, M.D., WTD Steering Committee Chair. “Christine Ashimwe is not only a thrombosis survivor, but also a tireless advocate and changemaker for thrombosis awareness. We are privileged to welcome her knowledge and insights to the Steering Committee and look forward to working closely with her to boost patient involvement around the world.”
Ashimwe will serve a two-year term on the Steering Committee, with the option for an additional two-year renewal. She holds a bachelor’s degree in life sciences from Cadi Ayyad University in Morocco and a postgraduate degree in gender and development from the University of Rwanda Center for Gender Studies. Ashimwe is currently pursuing a master’s degree in global health delivery at the University of Global Health Equity in Rwanda. Ashimwe’s particular area of interest is thrombosis education and advocacy for pregnant and postpartum women.
“I have been incredibly passionate about thrombosis awareness ever since I experienced my first blood clot in December 2015,” Ashimwe said. “As a member of the World Thrombosis Day Steering Committee, I look forward to serving as an ambassador and spokesperson on behalf of thrombosis patients and survivors across the world.”
To learn more and support World Thrombosis Day, visit www.worldthrombosisday.org.
About World Thrombosis Day
Launched in 2014 and held annually on 13 October, World Thrombosis Day (WTD) aims to increase public, healthcare professional and health care systems’ awareness of thrombosis and, ultimately, to reduce deaths and disabilities from thromboembolic disease through a greater awareness of its causes, risk factors, signs and symptoms, and evidence-based prevention and treatment. WTD’s mission supports the World Health Assembly's global target of reducing premature deaths by non-communicable disease by 25 percent by 2025, as well as the WHO global action plan for the prevention and control of non-communicable diseases in the 2013-2020 timeframe. Visit www.worldthrombosisday.org for more information and to get involved.
Campaign Senior Specialist
International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis