NH DHHS - New Blood Pressure Control Guidance for Clinicians and Community Partners

Concord, NH – In recognition of American Heart Month, the New Hampshire

Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) is pleased to announce the

release of Ten Steps for Improving Blood Pressure Control in New Hampshire:

A Practical Guide for Clinicians and Community Partners, primarily authored

by Rudy Fedrizzi, MD, of Cheshire Medical Center/Dartmouth Hitchcock–Keene,

and Kimberly Persson, MSW, of the Institute for Health Policy and Practice

at the University of New Hampshire. This guide details how clinicians and

communities can work together to improve hypertension throughout the State.

The New Hampshire Million Hearts Learning Collaborative developed the Ten

Steps, a step-by-step manual to guide practitioners, quality improvement

personnel, and practice administrators in improving blood pressure control

in clinical practice and through community outreach. The manual distills

the lessons learned from the New Hampshire’s Million Hearts Learning

Collaborative. When combined, these ten steps provide a comprehensive

approach to improving hypertension control rates within communities.

Hypertension, also known as high blood pressure, is a common and dangerous

condition. It increases a patient’s risk for heart disease and stroke.

Heart disease is the second leading cause of death in New Hampshire. Almost

2,000 people died in New Hampshire due to coronary heart disease or heart

attacks in 2012. Stroke is the fifth leading cause of death in the State

causing an additional 438 deaths in 2012.

“Hypertension is not controlled in too many people throughout New

Hampshire,” said Dr. José Montero, Director of Public Health Services at

DHHS. “This manual is an important step toward encouraging health care

providers and community agencies, such as YMCAs, local health departments,

and others, to work together to meet the challenge of providing effective

care and promoting a healthy lifestyle among those they serve.”

In October 2013, DHHS, along with nine other states and the District of

Columbia, was awarded a Million Hearts funding grant by the Association of

State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO), with seed money from the

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Million Hearts is a

national initiative working to prevent one million heart attacks and

strokes by 2017.

New Hampshire’s work is modeled after the successful strategies implemented

at Cheshire Medical Center/Dartmouth Hitchcock–Keene over the past few

years. The grant’s framework is based on learning collaboratively through

community partnerships. New Hampshire’s Million Hearts Learning

Collaborative partners include:

· DHHS Division of Public Health Services

· Institute for Health Policy and Practice at the University of New


· Cheshire Medical Center/Dartmouth Hitchcock–Keene (CMC/DHK)

· City of Manchester Health Department

· Manchester Community Health Center (MCHC)

· Nashua Division of Public Health and Community Services, and

· Lamprey Health Care – Nashua (LHC-N)

Utilizing evidence-based public health interventions, MCHC improved the

blood pressure control rate among its patients from 66% to 75% over the

course of 2014, and LHC-N improved its rate from 69.5% to 72%.

With additional support from ASTHO and CDC, Goodwin Community Health,

partnering with Wentworth Douglass Hospital, Frisbie Memorial Hospital, and

Community Partners, will now participate in the New Hampshire Million

Hearts Learning Collaborative.

The guide can be found at

http://www.dhhs.nh.gov/dphs/cdpc/documents/tensteps-bpcontrol.pdf. An

interactive, half-day workshop to support practitioners and practice

administrators in implementing the guide’s strategies is scheduled for

Thursday, March 26, 9:00 am–12:00 pm at the New Hampshire Department of

Transportation, Granite State Conference Room, 7 Hazen Drive, Concord, NH,

03302. To register, go to

http://chhs.unh.edu/ihpp/public-health-and-health-promotion. Space is

limited. Please register by Friday, March 20.

For more information about heart disease and stroke prevention, visit the

DHHS website

http://www.dhhs.nh.gov/dphs/cdpc/documents/tensteps-bpcontrol.pdf. To learn

more about American Heart Month, go to