This past January, the American Heart Association began a partnership with Neighborhood
Health around blood pressure awareness and control for its patients. The mission of Neighborhood Health is to improve health and advance health equity across Northern Virginia in Alexandria, Arlington, and Fairfax by providing high quality primary care regardless of ability to pay. Within the system there are 12 clinics that service residents in need with services ranging from family practice, internal medicine, dental care and behavioral health.
American Heart Association staff and volunteers provided Target BP and blood pressure management training to all Neighborhood Health medical providers and medical assistants. The trainings were led by Past Board President, cardiologist Dr. Roquell Wyche. Twenty blood pressure monitors were provided and the Association established a BP Loaner program for each clinic. Neighborhood Health clinics across Northern Virginia also integrated the Target BP algorithm into their practice and used posters and resources in their exam rooms to educate patients. The system reaches around 28,500 patients annually.
Seeing an increased need during the pandemic crisis, the Association also provided Neighborhood Health with 50 additional BP monitors, 100 thermometers and 8 contactless thermometers to serve their prenatal and hypertensive patients during the pandemic.
“Healthcare costs and access are especially difficult during this unprecedented time, making our ability to work with Neighborhood Health on blood pressure control critical,” said Erica McIntyre, Community Impact Director for the American Heart Association. “The need is great for under-resourced residents of Northern Virginia where 21% of all residents – 1 in 5 – suffer from hypertension.”
When healthcare providers apply the most up-to-date evidence-based treatment guidelines, patient outcomes improve, and lives can be saved. Programs like the Association’s Target BP help facilitate continuous quality improvement and support for outpatient organizations’ efforts. Learn more about blood pressure control and find resources here.