Spotlight on Best Practices

submitted by Anne Connor, CFRE
Director, Community Grants

In 2012, four of MHM’s funded partners exceeded the Healthy People 2020 goal for blood pressure reduction in hypertense patients. That means they were eight years ahead of the national curve!

The Healthy People goal (HDS-12) to be achieved by 2020 is that 43.7% of patients diagnosed with hypertension will get their blood pressure under control (below a hypertense level).

These four partners not only exceeded the Healthy People baseline, they did better than the goal for 2020. So what are they doing right?

  • CommuniCare’s clinic in Hays County exceeded the Healthy People 2020 goal of 43.7%, with 51% of their patients achieving this goal. According to their Practice Manager, Robert Milks: “The main contributing factor for this success is the patients’ willingness to accept some responsibility. Patients have committed to regular visits and complied with their medication regime along with some health education provided by the nurses. We also provide educational materials in English and Spanish. We have also provided assistance with access to medications by utilizing prescription assistance programs.”
  • Matagorda Episcopal Health Outreach Program (MEHOP) far exceeded the goal of 43.7%, with an actual of 69%. MEHOP CEO Celeste Harrison reported, “Since we began the implementation of PCMH [Patient Centered Medical Home] concepts, we have care team members who follow up with these chronic patients who don’t show up for their visits. Most of our providers bring back these patients at 2 and 3 week intervals until we believe we have the best medicine incorporated into overall care goals, including self-management.”564501 343246832431541 241205097 n
  • Mission of Mercy, a mobile clinic, also far exceeded the goal, with a 70% success rate. Their Executive Director, Leo Barrera, Jr., said: “Our results in lowering patients’ blood pressure to healthy levels is due to a combination of factors. These include patient compliance, patient education in regard to the importance of self-maintenance, our patients’ desire to improve their health, and the culture of our mobile clinics to improve health…. Our physicians, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, and volunteers continually provide education to patients to remind them of the importance of taking care of themselves and following the directions of health care providers. Key educational components are repeated regularly and providers and volunteers regularly provide moral support. These factors play an important role in creating an environment at our mobile clinic sites that promotes healthy living and improving the health of our community.”
  • Atascosa Community Health Center’s Karnes County location also exceeded the goal, with a 62% success rate.

Congratulations to all our partners who are doing such a great job! They are truly making a difference by improving the health of those least served.