The American Heart Association Receives A $1.7 million Multi-Year Grant from Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation To Improve Access and Outcomes for Vunerable Populations in Baltimore
Initiative focuses on improving patient transitions between primary and specialty care for populations affected by stroke, atrial-fibrillation and venous thromboembolism.
Baltimore, MD, March 29, 2018 —The American Heart Association announced the receipt of a $1.7 million grant from the Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation that will address patient care across the care continuum. With this grant, the AHA will convene a task force representing the myriad of stakeholders in the patient care journey: cardiology specialty care providers, primary care providers, government, payer groups, and representatives of the patients we seek to serve. This work will complement the existing strategies being implemented through the Accountable Health Community work, spearheaded by the Baltimore City Healthy Department.
The AHA is launching a collective impact strategy: Community Health in Action. The Community Health in Action Taskforce (CHAT) aims to develop and implement strategies to address disparities and inequities that impact a patient’s ability to effectively access and navigate the healthcare system and that also impact the healthcare system’s ability to effectively reach out to and serve poor and medically underserved patients. This initiative will focus on improving the health outcomes of the most venerable Baltimore communities disproportionately affected by cardiovascular diseases including stroke, atrial-fibrillation (AFib) and venous thromboembolism (VTE).
“No collective impact model or action should be enacted without key stakeholders and patient voices at the helm. That is why this CHAT is so important,” said Dr. Athol Morgan, American Heart Association of Greater Maryland Board Member and CHAT Co-Lead. “We have as much to learn from our community as we have to give.”
“Heart disease and stroke are the number one and three causes of death in Baltimore and figure heavily into the city’s age-adjusted mortality rate being 40 percent higher than the rest of the state,” said John Damonti, president, Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation. “The AHA and its diverse set of partners in Baltimore are urgently seeking to change that picture for those at highest risk and bearing the greatest burden of disease, and we are very pleased to support this work.”
The strengthening of the provider and stakeholder network through the Community Health in Action Taskforce will help build lasting relationships and foster sustainable impact. Feedback from data captured in our quality improvement programs will help inform protocols for transitions of care and management of AFib, VTE, hypertension, and stroke, these solutions can be developed with a subset of partners and delivered to the wider taskforce group to foster long-term systems change in care delivery and coordination.
The CHAT will work to integrate primary and specialty care, increasing capacity for providers, and linking the wide array of stakeholders in Baltimore’s health community that will ultimately strengthen the continuum of care for those who are most in need. This is a three-year initiative with a vision of health equity and equal access to quality healthcare resources for all.
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Our mission is to be a relentless force for a world of longer, healthier lives. For nearly 100 years, we’ve been fighting heart disease and stroke, striving to save and improve lives. Heart disease is the No. 1 killer worldwide, and stroke ranks second globally. Even when those conditions don’t result in death, they cause disability and diminish quality of life. We want to see a world free of cardiovascular diseases and stroke.