AUSTIN, August 8, 2022 – The American Heart Association in Central Texas has been working alongside the Lone Star Circle of Care (LSCC) family of clinics, a Federally Qualified Health Center with over 20 locations in Central Texas, to enhance blood pressure measurement accuracy and increase accessibility to home monitors for patients therefore improving control with the support of Abbott.

Hypertension is one of the most common health conditions and a key risk factor for heart attacks, stroke, and death if left untreated. Blood pressure readings are a crucial step in diagnosing hypertension. However, blood pressure measurements can be inaccurate due to several external factors including inconsistent technique. The Association, in partnership with the American Medical Association, works to improve blood pressure control through evidence-based activities that focus on equipment calibration and validation, staff knowledge and skills and developing a system of care for hypertensive patients.

"It is so exciting to see our collaboration with LSCC expanding this year as we work together to give the best care and resources for the communities we serve,” said Community Impact Director Catalina Berry.  “We hope to continue this work and we are so grateful to the leadership of LSCC and all they do."

Existing staff will have continuing education training by their managers biannually during routine staff meetings. Staff will then be expected to take a competency test over the training through their portal.

New staff will be testing their blood pressure measurement knowledge and skills during orientation and then at their annual competency checkoff sessions in the fall using the AHA’s Technique Quick Check Tool.

Additionally, periodic staff updates and training sessions will be held during lunch and learn sessions. By using the Quick Check resource, LSCC can confirm clinicians are taking blood pressure measurements the right way and the same way every time. This supports their involvement in the National Target:BP Recognition program as they join other clinics to achieve 70% hypertension control. All these updates were effective in July 2022.

By seeing over 95,000 patients overall with 73 percent racial and/or ethnic minority patients and nearly 85 percent at or below twice the Federal Poverty Guideline, LSCC is reaching a vulnerable community with great need.

LSCC and the Association are developing a hypertension registry which will take blood pressure measurement and control to the highest level, ensuring the very best care to the community moving forward.


About the American Heart Association

The American Heart Association is a relentless force for a world of longer, healthier lives. We are dedicated to ensuring equitable health in all communities. Through collaboration with numerous organizations, and powered by millions of volunteers, we fund innovative research, advocate for the public’s health and share lifesaving resources. The Dallas-based organization has been a leading source of health information for nearly a century. Connect with us on heart.orgFacebookTwitter or by calling 1-800-AHA-USA1.  

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