A free community-based program is making a difference for participants
battling a top health threat — high blood pressure, the second-leading
cause of death in the United States.
“Only cigarettes kill more people than high blood pressure,”
says Dr. Jherie Ducombs, a Cardiologist and Vice President/Assistant Chief
Medical Officer of North Oaks Health System. “You can’t see
or feel high blood pressure, so regularly check your numbers and be accountable
in a program like
Check. Change. Control. This program can help motivate people to make life-saving changes. And
we encourage the community to participate in this free program.”
Participants in the free, science-based program have seen an average drop
in systolic blood pressure of 11 mmHg, according to the American Heart
Association/American Stroke Association.
On hand for the announcement, from left, are: North Oaks President/CEO
Michele Sutton; North Oaks Cardiologist and Assistant Chief Medical Officer
Jherie Ducombs, MD; American Heart Association Greater New Orleans Area
Executive Director Brittany Gay; and American Heart Association Northshore
Heart Walk Director Stephanie Chastain.
Sponsored locally by North Oaks Health System, anyone can participate in
the free online program and track and manage their blood pressure by signing up at
www.heart.org/ccc. The Northshore community campaign code is
“We are excited to begin this program because high blood pressure
is a key health issue. Nearly half of American adults have high blood
pressure,” says Brittany Gay, American Heart Association Greater
New Orleans Area Executive Director. “Getting on the front lines
of preventative care can help prevent the damage that high blood pressure
does to the circulatory system. This is a significant contributing factor
to heart attack, stroke and other health threats.”
Such programs need more extensive use because more than 100 million American
adults have high blood pressure, defined as a blood pressure reading of
130/80 or higher. High blood pressure increases the risk of heart attack,
stroke and heart failure, as well as contributing to vision loss and kidney disease.
African Americans are more likely to have high blood pressure at younger
ages, and along with Hispanic Americans, are less likely to have their
blood pressure under control, according to
Louisiana has high rates of obesity, physical inactivity and hypertension.
Just over 39 percent of adults in Louisiana have high blood pressure,
according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. But support from
Check. Change. Control. can help local residents keep their blood pressure in check with monitoring,
group activities and mentoring. Nationwide, more than 65,000 people have
Check. Change. Control.