Shannon Walsh
(703) 838-0033 ext. 377

9 March 2015

AMGA-Affiliated Winners Account for Nearly Half of All Recognized Million Hearts® 2014 Hypertension Control Champions
Honorees Recognized for Innovative Blood Pressure Control Efforts

ALEXANDRIA, VA - The American Medical Group Association (AMGA) announced today that 14 medical groups, health systems, and providers associated with the AMGA and/or its national Measure Up/Pressure Down® hypertension campaign received national recognition as Million Hearts® 2014 Hypertension Control Champions. These Champions include:

  • Arsalan Shirwany, MD, FACC, Stern Cardiovascular Foundation, Germantown, TN
  • The Baton Rouge Clinic, AMC, Baton Rouge, LA
  • Colorado Springs Health Partners, Colorado Springs, CO
  • Daniel Otten, MD, FACC, Stern Cardiovascular Foundation, Germantown, TN
  • Denver Health Community Health Services, Denver, CO
  • Esse Health, St. Louis, MO
  • Essentia Health, Duluth, MN
  • Holger Salazar, MD, FACC, Stern Cardiovascular Foundation, Germantown, TN
  • Jennifer Morrow, MD, FACC, Stern Cardiovascular Foundation, Germantown, TN
  • Kaiser Permanente, Southern California, CA
  • Kelsey-Seybold Clinic - Cypress, Houston, TX
  • Kelsey-Seybold Clinic - Pasadena, Pasadena, TX
  • Premier Medical Associates, Monroeville, PA
  • PriMed Physicians, Dayton, OH

The 14 medical groups, health systems, and providers account for nearly half of this year’s 30 honorees. Last year, three of the nine 2013 Hypertension Control Champions were both AMGA members and campaign participants.

The Million Hearts® Hypertension Control Challenge is a competitive challenge to identify practices, clinicians, and health systems that have worked with their patients to achieve hypertension control rates at or above 70 percent. The Champions used a variety of hypertension control strategies to achieve the 70 percent control rate, including evidence-based care processes (“campaign planks”) and other practices recommended by the AMGF’s national Measure Up/Pressure Down® campaign. These include designating hypertension champions; taking action to improve medication adherence; implementing consistent, strategic use of electronic health records; using team-based care models; promoting patient self-measured blood pressure monitoring with clinical support; and staying connected to patients by conducting outreach and providing support.

“The success in hypertension control achieved by these AMGA members and Measure Up/Pressure Down® participants demonstrates the effectiveness of team-based, coordinated care,” says Donald W. Fisher, Ph.D., CAE, President and Chief Executive Officer of AMGA. “Our affiliation with nearly half of this year’s Champions speaks volumes not only about our members’ dedication to quality improvement, but also about the impact of our national Measure Up/Pressure Down® hypertension campaign.”

These award-winning organized systems of care and providers join 150 medical groups and health systems currently participating in Measure Up/Pressure Down®, a three-year campaign to improve high blood pressure prevention, detection, and control by 2016. The campaign is spearheaded by the American Medical Group Foundation (AMGF), AMGA’s nonprofit education and research arm. Measure Up/Pressure Down® is the first initiative of the Chronic Care Challenge, a long-term effort by AMGF to improve quality of care and patient outcomes for chronic conditions with the greatest impact.


High blood pressure is one of our nation's most significant health issues.  According to the CDC, 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. An estimated 68 million Americans have the disease, often referred to as the silent killer.

Measure Up/Pressure Down® brings together national partners and sponsor organizations to work collectively to provide patients and communities information and tools that facilitate lifestyle changes, medication adherence, and other keys to successful blood pressure control. National partners,  and sponsors of the campaign include: Aetna, American Heart Association, American Kidney Fund, American Society of Hypertension, American Stroke Association, Association of Black Cardiologists, Baptist Medical Group, Daiichi Sankyo, Inc., District of Columbia Department of Health, Epic, HealthyWomen, Humedica, Institute for Health and Productivity Management, Institute for Healthcare Improvement, Kaiser Permanente National Community Benefit Fund at the East Bay Community Foundation, Men's Health Network, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Million Hearts® initiative, Palo Alto Medical Foundation, Preventive Cardiovascular Nurses Association, Ralphs, Right Care, United Health Foundation, Withings, and WomenHeart. For more information about the campaign, visit

About American Medical Group Foundation
The American Medical Group Foundation (AMGF) is the nonprofit arm of the American Medical Group Association and it supports and disseminates research on better ways to deliver health care that is scientifically sound and value-based. AMGF also develops and supports educational programs to enable all stakeholders-providers, payers, policymakers and patients to translate the evidence of what works best into everyday practice.

About Measure Up/Pressure Down®
AMGF launched Measure Up/Pressure Down®, a three-year national campaign to improve care and reduce the burden of high blood pressure on November 29, 2012. Measure Up/Pressure Down® includes nearly 150 medical groups, health systems and national partners such as the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Mayo Clinic, Cleveland Clinic, Kaiser Permanente, and Geisinger Health System. The goal of the three-year campaign is to have 80 percent of high blood pressure patients in control of their condition by 2016.

About American Medical Group Association
The American Medical Group Association (AMGA) represents some of the nation's largest, most prestigious medical practices, independent practice associations, accountable care organizations, and integrated healthcare delivery systems. AMGA's mission is to support its members in enhancing population health and care for patients through integrated systems of care. More than 160,000 physicians practice in AMGA member organizations, providing healthcare services for 120 million patients (approximately one in three Americans). Headquartered in Alexandria, Virginia, AMGA is the strategic partner for these organizations, providing a comprehensive package of benefits, including political advocacy, educational and networking programs, publications, benchmarking data services, and financial and operations assistance.