Catawba Service Unit-Blood Pressure Education Classes
Program Type: Local Effort - Programs and/or activities that have not been evaluated but are identified by local programs as producing positive results.
The CSU has offered monthly Blood Pressure education classes for patients with hypertension and cardiovascular disease for the past 2.5 years. The primary objective of the program is to offer healthy life style choices that will help the individual maintain control of his/her hypertension and/or cardiovascular disease and reduce complications.
Topics related to blood pressure control and Cardiovascular disease are covered-definitions, causes, nutrition, medication and adherence, how to increase activity, stress management and symptoms of stroke and heart attack.
The class is typically given in two 2-hour sessions, a week apart. Participants pick a lifestyle change they would like to begin working on in the coming week and report progress/obstacles and successes the second week. A packet of written material and recipes are given, many are Native American oriented. Material is drawn from Honoring the Gift of Heart Health, IHS, the local Health Dept, and regional-type simple recipes that others have enjoyed. Because the literacy level of the participants has a wide range, the class structure uses several formats-videos, storytelling, group sharing, visuals such as salt and fat models, and practice with labels.
Blood pressures are checked at each class, a low fat/low sodium meal preparation demonstration is given, and opportunity for questions and sharing among the participants. A blood pressure cuff is provided for home monitoring at the end of the class.
Class size is small with no more than 8 participants each time. A RD/CDE and a CHR or CNA do the class, take blood pressures and instruct on the home monitors. It has been successful in drawing participants who normally don’t like to come to group activities, because of shyness or other reasons. They seem more likely to come if they are told the class is small and their Provider has referred them. The time is alternated between day and evening classes each month. The discussion on stress management is usually very insightful and people typically seem to want to prolong this part of the class and find help for managing the stress in their lives.
Cardiovascular Disease , Nutrition
Name: Lisa Martin, RD, CDE
Site or Location Name: Catawba Service Unit
2893 Sturgis Rd
Rock Hill, , SC 29732