Meighan GirgusChief Marketing & Programs Officer
American Heart Association
Meighan is the Chief Marketing & Programs Officer of the American Heart Association (AHA). In this role, she leads the AHA’s marketing and communications strategy, designs and implements key programs and initiatives to ensure their effective implementation and scale in the field and in direct-to-market channels, and oversees efforts in preventive health, science operations, communications, brand content, stroke, peripheral vascular disease and multicultural markets, patients, digital healthcare innovation, health quality, advocacy, and field health strategies.
Prior to being named Chief Marketing & Programs Officer, Meighan served for seven years as Chief Mission Officer and seven years as Executive Vice President of Healthcare Markets. She has more than two and a half decades of experience in healthcare marketing and administration. Meighan has spent much of her career dedicated to helping change the care delivery system and has been integrally involved in multiple national panels and writing groups dedicated to fighting cardiovascular disease. As a result of this work, she was a recent recipient of the Medical Marketing & Media’s 2016 Health Influencer 50 Pros Changing the Healthcare Game.
She was a co-author of the groundbreaking “Recommendations for the Establishment of Primary Stroke Centers,” published in JAMA, which was the precedent for a radical shift in stroke care in the United States and the premise for The Joint Commission’s primary stroke center certification program. She was also a co-author of the “Recommendations for Improving the Quality of Care through Stroke Centers and Systems: An Examination of Stroke Center Identification Options,” which was published in Stroke and has been instrumental in redefining the type of care that is provided to stroke patients.
She was a writing group member for the CDC’s “A Public Health Action Plan to Prevent Heart Disease,” and an expert panel member for the CDC workgroup which published “Establishment of Data Elements for the Paul Coverdell National Acute Stroke Registry” in Stroke. Additionally, she co-authored “Advances in the Genetics of Cerebrovascular Disease and Stroke” published in Neurology. Meighan participated in the NHLBI Workgroup on Peripheral Artery Disease: Developing a Public Awareness Campaign and on the National Institute of Neurological Diseases and Stroke’s Stroke Progress Review Group. She is a co-author of “Translating Research into Practice for Healthcare Providers: The American Heart Association’s Strategy for Building Healthier Lives Free of Cardiovascular Diseases and Stroke” and “Partnering to Reduce Risks and Improve Cardiovascular Outcomes - American Heart Association Initiatives in Action for Consumers and Patients,” both published in Circulation.
She also participated in and co-authored “A Vascular Disease Thought Leaders Summit Report 2015: Improving Vascular Disease Prevention, Detection and Treatment,” which has been instrumental in guiding the AHA’s science focus in the area of vascular disease. Additionally, she served for three years on the Board of Trustees for the Certification Commission for Healthcare Information Technology under the direction of Dr. Mark Leavitt. More recently, Meighan co-authored “Translating Evidence into Practice: A Decade of Efforts by the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association to Reduce Death and Disability Due to Stroke: A Presidential Advisory” in the journal Stroke and “The American Heart Association's Recommendations for Expanding the Applications of Existing and Future Clinical Registries: A Policy Statement From the American Heart Association,” published in Circulation. She recently was a co-author of COAST (Coordinating Options for Acute Stroke Therapy): An Advance Directive for Stroke, published in The Journal of Clinical Ethics, and served of the Institute of Medicine Planning Committee on Health System Leaders Working Towards High Value Care Through Integration of Care and Research, which resulted in the 2015 publication of the same name. She served on the PATient Navigators to rEduce Readmissions (PArTNER) External Advisory Committee.
Meighan received her undergraduate degree from the University of Texas at Austin, her Masters in Business Administration from Southern California University, and completed her Graduate Marketing Certification at Southern Methodist University.