Improving Hypertension _ Diabetes Control and Prevention
An e-NEWSLETTER from Quality Insights                                                                                         March 3, 2017

In This Issue


taking blood pressure shiningFebruary, which was American Heart Month, is now over and the team at Quality Insights hopes you took the opportunity to review the many  provider and patients resources that have been highlighted in previous e-newsletters to improve blood pressure (BP) management in your patient population.  This week, we would like to highlight the issue of undiagnosed hypertension to wrap up the blood pressure (BP)  theme. 

Of the 75 million Americans who have hypertension, almost half do not have the condition under control. About 11 million of them don't know their BP is too high and are not receiving treatment to control it, even though most of these individuals have health insurance and visit a health care provider each year.

That means potentially millions of people with uncontrolled hypertension are seen by clinicians but remain undiagnosed. While following best practices and providing the highest levels of care, providers can still have patients "hiding in plain sight" who are at risk for or have undiagnosed hypertension.

Finding these patients and spreading the word about how other health care professionals can find them may help save lives.
Video: learn the four steps to Finding Undiagnosed Hypertensive Patients   

videoWatch this Million Hearts® video, Finding Undiagnosed Hypertensive Patients, to learn more about the four steps to finding patients "hiding in plain sight" with undiagnosed hypertension, which include:
  1. Establish clinical criteria for potentially undiagnosed hypertension.
  2. Search electronic health record data for patients who meet the established clinical criteria.
  3. Implement a plan to diagnose these patients, and to treat those with hypertension.
  4. Calculate your health practice's or system's hypertension prevalence and compare your data against local, state, or national data.
Start with the steps that make the most sense for your practice or system. The most important action to take is beginning the search for these patients. Treating uncontrolled hypertension dramatically reduces patients' risk for heart attack and stroke. 

Bringing individuals "hiding in plain sight" into clear view will help protect millions from unnecessary and preventable events.
use this tool to estimate hypertension prevalence in your practice 

toolThere are millions of U.S. adults who have hypertension and have recently received medical care, but their hypertension remains undiagnosed and, therefore, untreated. This places them at increased risk for having a heart attack or stroke. 

The Million Hearts® Hypertension Prevalence Estimator Tool provides the user with a health system's expected hypertension prevalence, which is the estimated percentage of patients receiving care within the health system who have hypertension. Health systems (including practices) can compare their expected hypertension prevalence calculated using the Estimator Tool with their measured prevalence to assess if they potentially have a large percentage of their patient population who have undiagnosed hypertension.
undiagnosed hypertension: it's time to learn more 

undiagnosedMillion Hearts® has compiled an online resource library that contains links to a wide variety of articles, case studies, references, and much more related to undiagnosed hypertension.  

Take a moment to visit Undiagnosed Hypertension page on the Million Hearts® website to access these resources to enhance your understanding of prevalence of hypertensive patients 'hiding in plain site', and the dangers it poses to your patients the longer it goes untreated.
download the undiagnosed hypertension partner toolkit from million hearts ®

downloadMillion Hearts ®  has made blood pressure control a critical national priority and has developed clinician and patient resources to help you find patients with hypertension who are hiding in plain sight in your system or practice.

You can help raise awareness among your colleagues and patients who may be hiding in plain sight. Use the images and messaging included in the Undiagnosed Hypertension Partner Toolkit to share messages on social media, add an announcement to your e-newsletter, or include a badge in your e-signature. Below is just one example of a social media meme included in the toolkit.

uncontrolled hypertension meme
Actions You Can Take to Optimize Patient Reminders and Supports for Patients with Hypertension

actionsThe Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)-Million Hearts® Hypertension Control Change Package for Clinicians (HCCP) presents a listing of process improvements that ambulatory clinical settings can implement as they seek optimal hypertension control. It is composed of change concepts, change ideas, evidence- and practice-based tools and resources. One of those tools is the Actions to Optimize Patient Reminders and Supports, shown below. Click here to view or download the HCCP.

optimizing patient reminders and support

upcoming EHR Incentive Program attestation Deadlines have been extended

clock - deadline upcomingQuality Insights would like to ensure that all of our providers that are participating in the Medicare and/or Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs are aware that attestation deadlines have been extended but are quickly approaching. Please find the deadlines listed below for both programs.

CMS Medicare Attestation Deadline Extended for Providers Participating in Medicare EHR Incentive Program
  • March 13, 2017 at 11:59 p.m.      
Pennsylvania Medicaid EHR Incentive Program Attestation Deadline Extended
  • Eligible Professionals (EPs) - May 31, 2017 at 11:59 p.m. 

  • Eligible Hospitals (EHs/CAHs) - April 17, 2017 at 11:59 p.m.

contact information

For more details about the Improving Hypertension and Diabetes Care & Prevention project, please email Rhonda Dodson or call 1.800.642.8686, Ext. 7711.
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