Blood pressure awareness with Federally Qualified Healthcare Centers
The American Heart Association is working with Federally Qualified Health Centers such as Unity Health, DC Primary Care Association and Primary Care Coalition to conduct ongoing training to implement blood pressure control metrics through the Target:BP program. Target:BP supports physicians and care teams by offering access to the latest research, tools and resources to reach and sustain blood pressure control.150,000 patients in the Greater Washington Region in 2018 controlled their blood pressure with the Target:BP initiative.
DC Primary Care Association Members: Bread for the City, Community of Hope Conway Health, Community of Hope, Family Health, Community of Hope Mary Reed, Elaine Ellis Center of Health, Family & Medical Counseling Service, La Clinica Del Pueblo, Mary’s Center Adams Morgan, Mary’s Center Petworth, MetroHealth, Whitman Walker.
Simple Cooking with Heart Classes with the YMCA Metropolitan Washington
The Greater Washington Region American Heart Association collaborates with the YMCA of Metropolitan Washington to provide healthy cooking classes and practical nutrition education at the Nationals Youth Baseball Academy and the YMCA Anthony Bowen. These classes are part of a participant-designed program to decrease diet-related diseases, increase food access and build a community around food. Starting on June 1st, the program will expand to the Reston, VA YMCA location. 800+ people in our community learned to cook healthy, low-cost meals through the Simple Cooking with Heart Curriculum.
Healthy Lifestyles Network
Along with DC Health, the YMCA Metropolitan Washington and Children's National Medical Center, we are building an anti-obesity program to help local families learn to cook light, move more and get fit through the Healthy Lifestyles Network program. Activities include community dinners, a six-week cooking class using the AHA's Simple Cooking with Heart curriculum and a six week behavior modification class taught by Children's National. While parents are in session, their children will enjoy a physical activity class. The overall goal is to improve the health of the DC community, one family at a time.
Training student lifesavers in CPR
The American Heart Association delivered CPR in Schools Training Kits and CPR Anytime Kits to local schools. The American Heart Association also worked to pass legislation in MD, VA and DC requiring students to learn CPR as a graduation requirement.150,000 new lifesavers were trained in the Greater Washington Region last year.
Increase Healthy Food Access
Currently there are only three grocery stores in Wards 7 and 8 for 150,000 residents in comparison to Ward 6 that has 10 grocery stores for 82,000 residents. We are working with local organizations to figure out how to bring more healthy food options to Wards 7 and 8. We advocate for allowing Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) recipients to use their benefits at farmers' markets. Support funding for programs that significantly increase SNAP benefits when used on fruits and vegetables.
Maryland Market Money (local in MD): AHA helped increase the number of farmers' markets that provide Maryland Market Money (SNAP match) program in Prince George's County, MD from 0 to 4 by providing training and technical assistance to farmers and market managers.
Produce Rx (DC): AHA supported the campaign for a pilot program where doctors can prescribe fruits and vegetables to low-income patients. Over 500 people will participate in the program where they will receive 20 dollars a week or 40 dollars every two weeks to buy fresh produce items.
Lyft: We are piloting the Lyft Grocery Access Program for seniors with DC Greens in Wards 7 and 8.
Food Trucks: We are piloting the Healthy Food Truck initiative in Prince George's County, MD.
Encourage Healthy Lifestyle Choices
Healthy Restaurant Kids' Meals (DC): AHA is advocating to ensure all restaurant meals marketed to children meet nutrition standards. Remove sugary drinks as the default beverage from all restaurant children's meals.
Sugary Drink Tax: AHA is supporting significant increases in excise taxes on sugary drinks in accordance with American Heart Association/Voices for Healthy Kids' criteria.
Bike and Pedestrian Appropriations (Local MD, VA): We support state and local financial mechanisms that create equitable, long-term funding for bicycling and walking projects and encouragement programs for communities most in need.
Tobacco Excise Tax (DC): We support significant increases in tobacco excise taxes at the state level.
Tobacco 21 (DC): AHA helped raise the minimum legal sales age (MLSA) for all tobacco products to 21 years; secure appropriations to implement enacted law.
Kids Heart Challenge
We work with schools throughout the Greater Washington Region to promote a heart-healthy lifestyle to students. The Kids Heart Challenge prepares elementary students for future success both physically and emotionally. Through cardio-pumping physical activities, kids learn the importance of being heart-healthy and helping others through fundraising for the American Heart Association. Participating teachers receive discounted certificates for PE equipment, direct contributions to their school and new curriculum resources for whole-child centered learning. Over 300 Greater Washington Region schools participate in the youth programs.
Karen & Dale White