Announcements: May 12, 2021

  • From left: Bay Clinic staff members Rae Ann Payne, assistant director of Clinical Operations; Marcie Saquing, chief operating officer; Cyd Hosseld, Health Promotions manager; and C. Kimo Alameda, Ph.D., chief executive officer display self-monitoring blood pressure machines that are part of the equipment, educational materials and technical support being provided by the American Heart Association Hawaii Division as part of its Adopt-a-Clinic initiative. The Bay Clinic’s adoption is made possible by sponsorship support to the association by Altres, and West Hawaii Community Health Center’s adoption is provided through association sponsorship by Stanford Carr Development. (Courtesy photo/Special to West Hawaii Today)

AHA announces ‘Adopt-A—Clinic’ program

The American Heart Association announced Monday that it is adopting Hawaii Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) to support their efforts to better control hypertension, or high blood pressure, in their patients.

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Big Island health centers being adopted are Hilo’s Bay Clinic, which will fall under ALTRES Inc., and the West Hawaii Community Health Center, adopted by Stanford Carr Development.

Hypertension, when the force of blood flowing through your blood vessels is consistently too high, continues to be a serious concern and is one of the association’s priority issues in driving equitable health impact in the community. Over 100 million Americans — nearly half of all adults — are living with high blood pressure. Left undetected or uncontrolled, high blood pressure can lead to heart attacks, strokes, heart failure, and other health threats. In 2019, 29% of patients who utilized FQHCs have diagnosed hypertension.

“Successful blood pressure management requires people to regularly monitor their blood pressure and respond to changes to keep numbers under control,” said Association Hawaii Division Board President Michael Lui, M.D., a Hawaii Pacific Health neurologist. “Hypertension is known as the ‘silent killer’ but with proper treatment and management, you can control your blood pressure to help you live a long and healthy life. Many individuals are treated at clinics regularly for check-ups and monitoring but getting frequent blood pressure checks is difficult when the health care system is overwhelmed, people are urged to stay home, and not everyone can afford a personal blood pressure monitor. From a neurologist perspective, controlling blood pressure is one of the most important controllable risk factors in preventing stroke.”

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The goal of the Adopt-A-Clinic program is to provide equipment, education, training and increase hypertension management in the communities that FQHCs serve. The Adopt-A-Clinic program empowers patients to manage their hypertension independently from home, as well as reinforce the FQHC’s staff support of those patients.

Clinics still needing adoption include: Hamakua Health Center and Molokai Community Health Center. For more information on sponsoring a health center, contact Lesli Yano at (808) 754-7637 or lesli.yano@heart.org.

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