The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has announced an extension of a grant providing $2.19 million dollars in funding for the Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) to target people at higher risk for diabetes, heart disease and stroke. The funds provided will be available through June 29, 2020.
The grant will be used to continue the focus on areas of the state disproportionately affected by high blood pressure, high blood cholesterol, diabetes, or prediabetes due to socioeconomic factors such as inadequate access to care, poor quality of care, or low income. Caddo, Delaware, Hughes, Lincoln, McIntosh, Muskogee, Pittsburg, and Seminole counties have been identified as areas of concentration.
Partnerships with other organizations are a key component of the OSDH outreach efforts. Working with the Choctaw Nation Health Services (CNHS) has allowed tribal and non-tribal community members to participate in high blood pressure self-management education coupled with pharmacist-provided medication therapy management. Continued support allows CNHS to expand these initiatives into additional sites within Choctaw Nation’s boundaries.
The extension also allows continued collaboration with Federally Qualified Health Centers and Community Health Centers, and hospitals located in the prioritized counties. Other partnerships include those with Oklahoma State University – Oklahoma County Extension Services (OCES) to offer diabetes prevention and self-management programs in county extension offices across the state, and work with Southwestern Oklahoma State University College of Pharmacy Rural Health Center and the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center’s College of Pharmacy.
“In order to improve Oklahoma’s health outcomes, it is going to require a coordinated effort by government and community organizations,” said Governor Kevin Stitt. “The work of the OSDH to leverage these partnerships and resources is a step toward the goal of significantly raising the state’s health ranking.”
“Many Oklahomans suffer from diseases that are largely due to personal behaviors including sedentary lifestyle, poor nutrition, and smoking,” Interim OSDH Commissioner Tom Bates said. “By using these funds to provide not only care management but also programs that encourage lifestyle changes, we can continue to tackle the challenge of reducing the rates of cardiovascular disease and diabetes.”
Projects funded through the grant include tracking and monitoring clinical measures shown to improve healthcare quality and identify patients with hypertension; implementing team-based care for patients with high blood pressure and high blood cholesterol; and linking community resources and clinical services to support referrals, self-management and lifestyle change for patients with high blood pressure and high blood cholesterol.