Ontario Health Teams

The new model of health care presents many challenges.   Initiating a Cardiovascular Health Awareness Program (CHAP) in your community can strengthen your Ontario Health Team application, while improving health care and saving money.   

CHAP reduces hospitalizations, is evidence-based, was developed and tested in Canada, it is inexpensive and easy to implement in any setting.

Here is how CHAP can help your OHT application:

Improve patient health CHAP led to a significant reductions in blood pressure for participants. Annual CVD hospitalizations are reduced at the population level.
Demonstrate community engagement   CHAP utilizes community groups. Risk assessments are performed in community settings by locally trained volunteers.
Transition to a population health management approach   CHAP can provide both in-reach and out-reach services. CHAP provides aggregate data on blood pressure and cardiovascular risk.  CHAP can identify population care gaps. Participants can be assessed for risk for cardiovascular disease, diabetes, heart attack and stroke or monitored for existing hypertension. 
Leverage programs and services to maximize savings   CHAP is inexpensive and easy to implement. Every $1 spent in CHAP saves $2 in costs within a year of implementation.
Support primary care providers CHAP works with primary care providers to prevent and improve management of CVD. Risk assessments are done in community settings, then shared with primary care providers.   
Use research evidence CHAP has 20 years of internationally recognized evidence.  Activities are based on Hypertension Canada guidelines, using automated blood pressure devices.   CHAP has been studied through rigorous randomized controlled trials and economic analysis.  CHAP research has formed the basis for  Canadian/American preventative task forces’ hypertension screening.
Address priority populations CHAP has experience with Francophone, Indigenous, immigrant, and older adult populations. CHAP  can be modified to any  communities’ needs.

How does it work?  Communities set up CHAP initiatives as collaborations between volunteer groups and health or social service organizations. Volunteers are trained and blood pressure is measured following Hypertension Canada recommendations.  Participants are assessed for cardiovascular disease risks in familiar settings such as pharmacies, places of worship, social housing buildings and other community spaces.  With participants’ permission, blood pressure readings and CVD risk profiles are shared with their physician and pharmacist.  Participants are linked with local programs and services around modifiable risk factors.

How much will it cost?  In a population of 100,000, implementing CHAP at a cost of $100,000 ($1/resident/year) will save up to $200,000 annually in CVD-related hospitalizations.

For more information on set up, evidence, or resources:  www.chapprogram.ca

Dr. Lisa Dolovich lisa.dolovich@utoronto.ca

Dr. Janusz Kaczorowski janusz.kaczorowski@umontreal.ca

Dr. Gina Agarwal agarg@mcmaster.ca