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December 3, 2012

Billings Clinic Joins 100 Medical Groups to Launch a Consumer Campaign Aimed at Preventing, Detecting and Controlling High Blood Pressure
New National Survey Results Revealed at Measure Up, Pressure Down Launch

Billings, MT— Billings Clinic joins more than 120 medical groups and health systems including Mayo Clinic, Cleveland Clinic, Geisinger Health System and Kaiser Permanente to launch a new national campaign aimed at improving high blood pressure prevention, detection and control. Called Measure Up, Pressure Down, the campaign launch event, held in Washington, D.C. on Thursday, November 29, featured a panel of national experts who announced the results of a national consumer survey about high blood pressure. As part of the campaign, these organizations have pledged to work toward achieving the goal of having 80 percent of high blood pressure patients in control of their condition by 2016.

According to a recent Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) study, one in three, or 68 million U.S. adults have high blood pressure and less than half of patients have their condition adequately controlled. High blood pressure contributes to nearly 1,000 deaths a day and accounts for an estimated $156 billion in health care services, medications and lost productivity. The CDC study states that the most effective way to control high blood pressure is for the patient to receive care from a coordinated team of health professionals.

This team-based approach is the catalyst behind the campaign launched by the American Medical Group Foundation (AMGF), the nonprofit education and research arm of the American Medical Group Association (AMGA), which represents healthcare professionals and groups that deliver health care to nearly one in three Americans. Billings Clinic and other Measure Up, Pressure Down participants have pledged to work toward achieving the campaign's goal by adopting one or more care processes known to improve patient outcomes. Groups will also track and report their progress on achieving better outcomes for patients.

Measure Up, Pressure Down will also engage patients, employers and other key stakeholders in a wide-reaching effort to raise awareness and empower individuals and communities to tackle one of the nation’s most important public health challenges. Supporting organizations include the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Million Hearts initiative, Institute for Healthcare Improvement, and the Association of Black Cardiologists.

The launch event featured experts from organizations such as the Mayo Clinic, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and the Henry Ford Medical Group, discussing the societal and financial costs, how to improve care, community-based strategies, the patient’s role, and strategies for patient engagement. More information about Measure Up, Pressure Down is available at www.measureuppressuredown.com.



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