Preeclampsia Threatens Lives, Advocates Dedicate 20 years to Creating Awareness

MELBOURNE, Fla., Aug. 25, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — To commemorate 20 years of advocacy, the Preeclampsia Foundation is recognizing its progress…

MELBOURNE, Fla., Aug. 25, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — To commemorate 20 years of advocacy, the Preeclampsia Foundation is recognizing its progress and renewing its commitment with a virtual Promise Walk for Preeclampsia™ on Saturday, August 29 –  the date the patient advocacy organization was incorporated in 2000.

Preeclampsia is a hypertensive disorder of pregnancy, annually claiming the lives of 76,000 women and 500,000 babies worldwide.

A group of committed survivors took up the cause to educate women and advance research, and the Preeclampsia Foundation was incorporated.

Today, over 2 million unique visitors rely on the foundation’s website for information and resources. Thousands of healthcare providers distribute the Foundation’s patient education material, and a research registry of over 6000 survivors is used for numerous studies, including several that are funded by the Foundation through its Peter Joseph Pappas Research and Vision Grant programs.

As a partner in the Alliance for Innovation on Maternal Health (AIM), a voting member of the Council on Patient Safety in Women’s Healthcare, and as a member of numerous state, national and international task forces, the Foundation works to improve outcomes by bringing the lived experience to guidelines, best practices, research studies, and quality improvement initiatives.

The Society for Maternal Fetal Medicine’s (SMFM) 2020 president Dr. Judette Louis adopted preeclampsia as the focus of her presidential platform in recognition of the Foundation’s work and to advance preeclampsia’s research and clinical agendas.

An influential voice in federal policy, the Preeclampsia Foundation played an instrumental role in critical legislation like the Preventing Maternal Deaths Act, signed into law in late 2018. 

The Promise Walk for Preeclampsia™, an event to raise awareness and funds for the Foundation’s work, is typically held in nearly 40 U.S. cities. Upended due to COVID-19, the Foundation established Promise Walk Wherever, a national virtual event in which walkers can participate wherever they are. Via social media walkers will share the experience with survivors and other advocates across the U.S.

Ja Morant, point guard for the NBA’s Memphis Grizzlies, and KK Dixon will serve as honorary chairs. KK, who almost lost her life to preeclampsia when she delivered the couple’s baby girl, Kaari, wants to build awareness especially among black mothers as African Americans are three times more likely to die from preeclampsia1. 

«While we are proud of our accomplishments, our commitment today is stronger than ever,» says Preeclampsia Foundation CEO Eleni Tsigas, who started as a volunteer and has led the organization since 2009. «With 60% of maternal deaths due to preeclampsia considered preventable2, our work is far from done,» says Tsigas.

To join KK and Ja, visit www.justdoit4kaari. com.

About the Preeclampsia Foundation

The Preeclampsia Foundation is a U.S.-based 501(c)(3) non-profit organization established in 2000 to improve the outcomes of hypertensive disorders of pregnancy by educating, supporting, and engaging the community, improving healthcare practices, and finding a cure. We envision a world where preeclampsia and related hypertensive disorders of pregnancy no longer threaten the lives of mothers and their babies. For more information, visit


Valerie Holloway


1 Howell E. Reducing disparities in severe maternal mortality and morbidity. Clin Obstet Gynecol. 2018.

2 Main EK, McCain CL, Morton CH, Holtby S, Lawton ES. Pregnancy-related mortality in California: causes, characteristics, and improvement opportunities. Obstet Gynecol. 2015: 125(4):938-947.


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SOURCE Preeclampsia Foundation