CVH Clinical and Community Connections for State & Local Public Health Departments
Facilitated by the
Cardiovascular Health Network of NACDD
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ISSUE 194 |  May 4, 2020
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From Your Colleagues


From Kris Kummerfeld, Missouri, Million Hearts Coordinator 

We are trying to figure out how to counsel our contractors regarding the SMBP and Patient Engagement project in this new COVID -19 environment. How are other states coping with this? 

Please email me, with your experience and suggestions. Thank you. 

From the CVH Council Executive Committee

                  Brittany Brown, UT, Tara Trujillo, CO, Janna Pastir, ND                        

From Janna Pastir, ND Division Director of Health Promotion  

Following up with Brittany's note in last week's Off the Cuff, I now help with emergency response. This means that despite being the Chronic Disease Director, I now spend most of my day being Janna, Public Health Hotline Operator (one of 25). I've been taking dozens of calls every day from people needing more info about the CARES Act, where to go if they are homeless, what symptoms to look for that may be different if they have a chronic illness, essential travel, custody disputes, and a variety of topics. Some calls are heartbreaking.

Despite working 15-hour days right now, the hotline is the first time in years that I get to work directly with a consumer/client/patient, and it has been a cup-filling experience for myself and those of my team that all left bedside care when we took our positions. There isn’t one sector or person not somehow impacted. The DoH has been the leader in the response including helping create plans and processes for the non-health agencies like unemployment, better business, hotel industry, retail, food pantries, virtual schooling, childcare for medical professionals, etc. I am so grateful for all that you and our big national team of professionals are doing to fill the gaps this moment. I invite you to share with all Category B staff what you are doing in your state and how it is making a difference. Contact me at

Webinars and Calls Worth Your Time

COVID-19 in the United States and Its Relationship with Cardiovascular Disease

Tuesday, May 5, 2020, 12-1:00 p.m. ET

Sponsors: American Heart Association and CDC

This webinar will provide an update on the current status of COVID-19 in the United States and its relationship with cardiovascular disease. The session will be dialog driven and will feature public health and clinical insights.


  • Dr. Eduardo Sanchez, MD, MPH, FAAFP, Chief Medical Officer for Prevention, American Heart Association
  • Dr. John Brooks, MD, Chief Medical Officer, CDC’s COVID-19 Response, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s COVID-19 Response
  • Dr. Larry Sperling, MD, FACC, FACP, FAHA, FASPC, Executive Director of Million Hearts, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Key Topics:
  • The current understanding of the implications of COVID-19 infection for individuals living with cardiovascular disease.
  • COVID-19 and cardiovascular disease and health disparities: what the data may tell us.
  • The importance of seeking care and treatment for acute cardiovascular disease events.
Register here. (If the registration link is not available before time of publication, a special edition with registration information will be sent.)



Epidemiology and Evaluation Collaborative Monthly Call  

Wednesday, May 13, 2020, 2-2:45 p.m. ET

The Epidemiology and Evaluation Collaborative (EEC) invites you to a 45-minute refuge with your 1815/1817 epi/eval peers. We'll provide our usual NACDD and AMP updates, and discuss 1815 deliverables. We will also highlight a few of the GIS Hallmarks that are particularly relevant as we navigate COVID-19. Join us at This call will be closed captioned.

Please contact Hannah Herold to be added to the EEC distribution list.

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News and Resources from CDC,
NACDD, and National Partners

From the American Medical Association

List of Blood Pressure Devices Validated for Clinical Accuracy

The accurate measurement of blood pressure (BP) is essential for the diagnosis and management of hypertension, a pressing issue that continues to impact the health of the nation, yet there is a lack of available information around clinically accurate BP measurement devices in the United States. With nearly half of U.S. adults suffering from high BP, the American Medical Association (AMA) enlisted NORC at the University of Chicago to support the development of criteria for determining which BP devices are validated for clinical accuracy (VDL Criteria TM), as well as the development of processes for the submission of device documentation by manufacturers and the review of those submissions by an independent committee.

An all-volunteer Independent Review Committee (IRC) has been established to independently review documents submitted by BP manufacturers, determine alignment with the approved VDL Criteria, and come to consensus on which BP devices qualify for listing on the VDL. The IRC is comprised of experienced, qualified professionals who are selected based on the following evaluation criteria:

  • Extensive publication history on topics related to BP device testing, measurement, and clinical impact
  • Knowledge of international validation protocols for BP measurement devices
  • Prior experience conducting clinical testing with BP devices or similar medical devices
  • Prior experience reviewing documentation in certification, standards development, and clinical trials, in a similar capacity
  • Each member of the IRC is cleared by the AMA to ensure relevant expertise in BP measurement and to limit or address potential conflicts of interest.

Read more here.


From CDC National Center for Health Statistics Monthly Call  

Hypertension Prevalence Among Adults Aged 18 and Over: United States, 2017–2018

Key findings
Data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey
  • In survey period 2017–2018, the prevalence of age-adjusted hypertension was 45.4% among adults and was higher among men (51.0%) than women (39.7%).
  • Hypertension increased with age: 22.4% (aged 18–39), 54.5% (40–59), and 74.5% (60 and over).
  • Hypertension prevalence was higher among non-Hispanic black (57.1%) than non-Hispanic white (43.6%) or Hispanic (43.7%) adults.
  • Hypertension was lowest among college graduates compared with those having a high school education or less, and those with more than high school or some college. This trend was similar among both men and women.
  • Overall hypertension prevalence decreased from 47.0% in 1999–2000 to 41.7% in 2013–2014, and then increased to 45.4% in 2017–2018.  

From AMA Center for Health Metrics and Evaluation

Data Visualization Resource for Local Decision Makers 

The American Heart Association’s Center for Health Metrics and Evaluation has posted a new data visualization resource to help pinpoint localities at risk for high rates of severe COVID-19 illness. By identifying counties with population characteristics associated with high rates of severe COVID-19 illness (i.e., higher proportions of residents who have certain health conditions or are over age 65), this resource can help local decision-makers: 1) assess their community’s risk for high rates of severe illness from a COVID-19 outbreak; and 2) determine appropriate community preparedness measures, such as efforts to reduce the spread of the virus and/or prepare for increases in healthcare utilization in the event of regional outbreaks.
Additional information about the visualization’s data inputs and potential uses are available. 


From the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials and the National Coalition of STD Directors

Free Online Contact Tracing Course 

Making Contact: A Training for COVID-19 Contact Tracers is an introductory online course for health agencies to use in rapid training for entry-level COVID-19 contact tracers. The training will be augmented by state/local specific training required to orient individuals to jurisdiction-specific protocols. This training focuses on building knowledge for remote contact tracing. A subsequent release will include a module on field services.  
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