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APhA gets pharmacists involved in BP control
June 25th, 2012
WASHINGTON – The American Pharmacists Association (APhA) Foundation has launched the Pharmacy Blood Pressure Challenge, a screening and education initiative that urges pharmacists to help prevent and control high blood pressure.
APhA said Friday that the effort supports the federal Million Hearts initiative, which aims to prevent a million heart attacks and strokes over the next five years.
The Pharmacy Blood Pressure Challenge is designed to spur pharmacists to talk with one patient per day about their blood pressure control. The effort focuses on the prevention and control of high blood pressure by encouraging pharmacists — including those at independent pharmacies and regional and national drug chains, as well as student pharmacists — to perform screenings and educate patients to help them better manage their cardiovascular health.
"Cardiovascular disease impacts approximately one in every three adults in the U.S., and many of these cases can be prevented or treated by focusing on cardiovascular risk factors, such as blood pressure control, that pharmacists are ideally positioned to address," Mindy Smith, executive director of the APhA Foundation, said in a statement. "We are excited to offer a program in which patients and pharmacists work together to improve medication use and the quality of health outcomes related to lowering blood pressure and preventing heart attacks and strokes."
Pharmacists who engage in the campaign will have the opportunity to report their impact on the APhA Foundation's Pharmacy Blood Pressure Challenge website. APhA noted that pharmacists are providing patient care services every day, and this aggregated information about in-pharmacy blood pressure education and screening programs will highlight the impact that pharmacists have in their communities.
"As a national partner in the Million Hearts initiative, APhA enthusiastically supports the Pharmacy Blood Pressure Challenge as a way for pharmacists to demonstrate how they can improve the lives of patients with cardiovascular disease," stated Thomas Menighan, chief executive officer and executive fice president at APhA.
The APhA Foundation is partnering with pharmacy alliance RxAlly on this awareness initiative through its Heart to Heart in-pharmacy blood pressure screening program.
"For the millions of people diagnosed with heart disease, medication is their primary source of treatment. However, research shows that more than half of patients don't take their medication as prescribed by their doctors," commented RxAlly CEO Bruce Roberts. "RxAlly is excited to partner with the APhA Foundation to identify blood pressure risk factors early and prevent disease progression through local Heart to Heart screenings."