WILLMAR, Minn., June 21, 2023 — Woodland Centers became the first Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic (CCBHC) in the nation to participate in three health initiatives through the American Heart Association, the leading global voluntary health organization dedicated to fighting heart disease and stroke for all. The initiatives, Target: BP™, Target: Type 2 Diabetes and Check. Change. Control. Cholesterol™, work together to reduce cardiovascular deaths, heart attacks and strokes among the more than 100 million Americans living with high blood pressure, high cholesterol or type 2 diabetes.[1]

Woodland Centers is a nonprofit community mental health center serving seven rural counties in west central Minnesota. Its participation in these initiatives could serve as the model for how the Association and CCBHCs should partner across the country to support all patients on their journey to optimal health.

Behavioral health clinics often see patients who do not have primary care providers. By collaborating with the American Heart Association, these centers can utilize free resources to help patients manage their risk factors for heart disease and stroke in addition to their mental health care. Participating clinics are eligible for small grants to help implement the American Heart Association’s guidelines.

“Woodland Centers’ leadership is excited to collaborate with the American Heart Association to promote a holistic approach to care within our organization,” said Ashley Kjos, PsyD, LP, CEO of Woodland Centers. “Our capacity to address the complex needs of individuals with mental health and substance use disorders in a comprehensive and integrated manner will be strengthened through our relationship with the Association.”

To further support blood pressure control in the community, Woodland Centers also adopted an American Heart Association guideline to ensure that any newly acquired blood pressure measurement devices have been validated for clinical accuracy through an independent review process.

To learn more about the Association’s preventative health initiatives, visit heart.org/outpatient.



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.org, Facebook, Twitter or by calling 1-800-AHA-USA1.   

For Media Inquiries:
Lisa Cole, lisa.cole@heart.org
For Public Inquiries: 1-800-AHA-USA1 (242-8721) 
heart.org and stroke.org  


[1] “Heart Disease and Stroke Statistics—2023 Update: A Report From the American Heart Association.” www.ahajournals.org/doi/10.1161/CIR.0000000000001123.