Tools You Can Use
- “Know Stroke” toolkits—these materials from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke provide stroke signs and symptoms in English and Spanish.
- Partnering with Pharmacists in the Prevention and Control of Chronic Diseases—this team-based care guide discusses ways to work with pharmacists to help prevent heart disease, stroke, and diabetes.
- Medicines to Help You: High Blood Pressure—this fact sheet from the Food and Drug Administration can help women discuss blood pressure medications with their doctor or other health professional.
- A little less sodium, a lot of lives—this HHS HealthBeat podcast summarizes new research that shows reducing Americans' sodium intake could save half a million lives!
- Brand new “Tips From Former Smokers”—share the latest testimonials from Americans who know the dangerous consequences of tobacco use and secondhand smoke.
Million Hearts™ in the Community
- Pharmacists play a key role in improving heart health. The Chief Pharmacy Officer for the U.S. Public Health Service discusses the evolving role of pharmacists as members of the health care team for heart disease and stroke prevention.
- CDC has announced new funds available to improve heart health across the nation. States whose applications are accepted will receive funds to provide CVD screening, referral, and lifestyle intervention services to uninsured and underinsured women through the WISEWOMAN program OR to implement actions to prevent and control diabetes, heart disease, obesity and associated risk factors. Check with your state health department to find out if they're participating and if there will be opportunities to collaborate.
Let us know what you're doing to advance Million Hearts™ in your community! Send us a short description with some key points, and we may feature you in a future e-Update!
The Science of Million Hearts™
- Study: Too much sodium in commercial toddler foods. High sodium intake is directly related to high blood pressure, and studies suggest that salt taste preference is established early in life. The authors of this study, presented at the American Heart Association Scientific Sessions in March 2013, found high levels of sodium in nearly 75% of commercial pre-packaged meals and savory snacks made for toddlers.
- Health information technology improves quality of care for patients with high blood pressure. This study shows that combinations of interventions, including clinical decision support through an electronic health record, contributed to positive across-the-board change in hypertension care.
- The Heart Truth® professional education materials improve provider knowledge of women and heart disease. A recent evaluation of The Heart Truth® training materials for health professionals found that providers demonstrated improved knowledge of heart disease in women after the training, especially obstetricians/gynecologists and other specialists. The study also found that tailoring the lectures to non-physicians, who also provide a lot of primary care, might be beneficial.
In March, we celebrated National Nutrition Month, and this month, we celebrate World Health Day and National Minority Health Month—for all, it’s important to keep the ABCS in mind.
Healthy eating, including reducing sodium and avoiding trans fat, can make a big difference for B and C—blood pressure control and cholesterol management. Focusing attention on disparities in cardiovascular health across these two important risk factors is a major focus of Million Hearts™ in April.
We applaud the World Health Organization for making the theme for World Health Day 2013 "Preventing and Controlling High Blood Pressure." We know how important blood pressure control is to preventing 1 million heart attacks and strokes by 2017!
Janet Wright, MD, FACC
Executive Director, Million Hearts™
P.S. Mark your calendar for CDC Grand Rounds on May 21 to get the latest on high blood pressure control efforts by Million Hearts™ and supporters!
One Easy Way to Support Million Hearts™
Listen to U.S. Surgeon General Regina Benjamin's recent interview on the Tom Joyner Show—and follow her tips for better heart health!