High blood pressure (also referred to as HBP, or hypertension) is when your blood pressure (BP), the force of blood flowing through your blood vessels, is consistently too high. Nearly half of adults in the United States (47%, or 116 million) have hypertension, defined as a systolic blood pressure greater than 130 mmHg or diastolic blood pressure greater than 80 mmHg or are taking medication for hypertension. Only about 1 in 4 adults (24%) with hypertension have their condition under control. Having hypertension puts you at risk for heart disease and stroke, which are the leading causes of death in the United States.1 Philadelphia has one of the highest self-reported hypertension prevalence rates in the nation (32.9% of adults).2 The American Heart Association – Greater Philadelphia region has partnered with Einstein Healthcare Network to improve blood pressure control rates.
Einstein Healthcare Network, now part of Jefferson Health, is a health care system with approximately 1,000 beds and more than 8,700 employees serving the communities of Philadelphia and Montgomery County, PA. The Network consists of three acute care hospitals including, Einstein Medical Center Philadelphia, the largest independent academic medical center in the Philadelphia region training over 3,500 health professional students each year with more than 450 residents and fellows in over 35 accredited programs; Einstein Medical Center Elkins Park; and Einstein Medical Center Montgomery. The Network also includes MossRehab, consistently ranked by U.S. News & World Report as a top rehabilitation hospital in the nation; Willowcrest, named by U.S. News & World Report as one of the best nursing homes for short-term rehabilitation care in Philadelphia; outpatient care centers; and a network of more than 900 primary care physicians and specialists throughout the region.3
Since 2018, Einstein Healthcare Network has participated in AHA’s Target: BP program, designed to improve blood pressure control rates among patients with the greatest health challenges. The Philadelphia AHA team has provided technical assistance to support the adoption of policy and system changes to drive evidence-based blood pressure practice. As part of Target BP, Einstein implemented several evidence-based strategies in recent years including, annual staff training on accurate blood pressure measurements utilizing a “Technique Quick Check” tool to test staff skills on BP measurement and calibrating all BP measurements devices per manufacturer recommendation. These activities provided healthcare professionals with opportunities to improve and refresh their skills and ensure patients receive accurate blood pressure results and care.
Building on this foundation, Einstein Healthcare Network utilized AHA’s recommendations and guidance to adopt and implement a standardized blood pressure measurement protocol at 22 locations in July of 2021. This protocol helps consistently obtain accurate blood pressure measurements including, confirmatory measurements through repeat in-office blood pressure measurements. Einstein Healthcare Network and AHA will continue to collaborate on innovative initiatives to
improve blood pressure control rates for their patients and the community.
Einstein Healthcare Network locations that adopted a standardized blood pressure measurement protocol:
- Community Practice Center
- Einstein Primary Medicine at Center One
- Einstein Primary Medicine at Elders Hall
- Einstein Primary Medicine at Front and Olney
- Einstein Primary Medicine at Klein Building
- Einstein Primary Medicine at Mayfair
- Einstein Primary Medicine at Roxborough
- Einstein Primary Medicine at Wayne Avenue
- Einstein Primary Medicine at Wadsworth Avenue
- Einstein Primary Medicine at York House
- Einstein Physicians Broad Axe Family Medicine
- Einstein Physicians Norriton
- Einstein Physicians King of Prussia Family Medicine
- Einstein Physicians Montgomery Family Practice
- Einstein Physicians Norristown Family Physicians
- Einstein Physicians North Wales Family Medicine
- Einstein Physicians Plymouth Meeting Family Medicine
- Einstein Physicians Shannondell
- Einstein Physicians Trappe Family Practice
- Einstein Cardiology at Tabor Road
- Einstein Cardiology at Township Line Road
- Einstein Primary Medicine at Wyoming
Theresa Spencer is award-winning communications strategist and public relations professional. She is a creative thinker and innovative in her approach to create collaborative opportunities for others and most importantly, can motivate people around her to turn their ideas into reality. I design and drive communications and branding strategies to advance the American Heart Association objectives, initiatives and programs.