MB HeartLife Champion
Jarmila (Jackie) Ratz
Jackie graduated from the University of Manitoba with a honours degree in Political Science and Religion. She worked in the fashion industry as an apparel buyer for close to 20 years before going on long term disability due to heart failure. Early in her journey with heart issues she discovered a passion for advocacy. She believes that knowledge is power and set about to not only help herself but to share her knowledge with others. She believes that with support, every heart failure person can impact their care through self advocacy. Also recognizing the inconsistency for access to care access the country, she hopes to make an impact on a national scale. She has a specific interest in women’s heart health care.
Jackie’s heart journey is due to the treatments she recieved for Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma when she was 24. At age 46 she was diagnosed with Chemo induced Cardiomyopathy and 2 years later a diagnosis of heart failure. She has a CRT-D device and is on 6 different medications. The impact of the diagnosis of heart disease and then heart failure in her prime has had significant impacts on her mental health. The lack of access to supports during her journey lead her to seek support on-line and to start a group for women.
Jackie is the founder of a 500+ member Facebook support group called “Canadian Women with Medical Heart Issues.” She is the Manitoba champion for HeartLife Canada and is the Canadian Women’s Heart Health Alliance co-chair for the Patient Advocacy Committee. Jackie also supports Heart & Stroke initiatives in Manitoba and Nationally. Most recently she organized the 2nd annual World Heart Day event in her community.
Saturday, October 26
4:30 PM – 5:30 PM