preventING 1 million heart attacks and strokes by 2017

Million Hearts® is a national program launched by The Department of Health and Human Services to prevent 1 million heart attacks and strokes by 2017. The initiative is paramount because heart disease and stroke are the first and fourth leading causes of death in the U.S., responsible for 1 of every 4 deaths in the country. Hypertension is a direct contributor to rates of heart attack and stroke. In 2010 alone, hypertension cost the U.S. $69.9 billion. These costs are expected to rise to $200.3B by 2030. Million Hearts® is progressing toward their mission by raising awareness and working with providers to engage their at-risk patients.

A Major Heart Issue – Hypertension

M-CEITA is committed to the Million Hearts® initiative. Through our electronic health record (EHR) adoption services, our staff works with providers in selecting core Clinical Quality Measures (CQMs) and meeting the rigorous demands of the Meaningful Use measures related to hypertension.

Meaningful Use objectives encourage collecting data on a percentage of hypertensive patients, but as hypertension is the most common primary diagnosis in the U.S., affecting one out of three adults, we highly recommend recording and tracking blood pressure data on all patients. Additionally, we encourage providers to analyze their patients’ blood pressure data using their certified EHR technology. The data from these measures and CQMs offers providers insight into the health of their patient population and can be used to develop plans of action, as appropriate.

Hypertension in Michigan

Hypertension is one of the major risk factors for heart disease and stroke. Given that hypertension is one of the most important modifiable risk factors for coronary heart disease, congestive heart failure, chronic kidney disease, and peripheral vascular disease, there is much to gain from stemming the growing rates of hypertension, particularly among high-risk communities.

In the state of Michigan, there are some alarming statistics for hypertension:

  • Over 1/3 of Michigan residents have a history of hypertension

  • Michigan ranks 12th in the U.S. for high blood pressure

  • Nearly 41% of Detroit residents are hypertensive, compared to the national average of 28.6%

  • Of the hypertensive patients in Detroit, 17.7% are unaware they have hypertension,
    5.3% are untreated
    , and 32.6% are undertreated

As part of our commitment to the community and Million Hearts®, M-CEITA is assisting and educating providers to heighten awareness and engage patients through:

  • Sharing best practice efforts on collecting patient vitals to ensure more Michigan patients have their blood pressure monitored more often.

  • Assistance with CQM selection related to the ABCs outlined by the Million Hearts® campaign.

  • Encouraging providers to engage patients in their care by equipping patients with health information, particularly those with chronic conditions like cardiovascular disease.

  • Promoting the use of clinical decision support tools, patient registries, and patient reminders to more aggressively manage the care of high-risk patients.

  • Providing educational tools to raise awareness of hypertension, heart attack, and stroke at the provider and patient levels.