The findings were published in the American Heart Association’s Hypertension journal and showed consistency of program results across diverse populations.
Menlo Park, CA - September 21, 2022 - Hello Heart, the only digital therapeutic that focuses exclusively on heart health, has released a new study evaluating the program's results for various user population groups in order to demonstrate its effectiveness related to diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). The study, published as an abstract in the American Heart Association’s Hypertension journal, indicates that Hello Heart’s hypertension digital coaching program could contribute to health equity, showing similar improvements in heart health for a range of populations, across gender, age, race, and more.
In heart disease, there are disparities in prevalence, mortality rate, and care across different groups. Women’s mortality rate for heart attacks is 2x higher than men – making heart disease their biggest health outcomes gap. Hypertension is a condition that disproportionately impacts Black adults – and the group experiences 30% more heart disease deaths compared to non-Hispanic White adults. Additionally, 25 million Spanish speakers receive about a third less healthcare than other Americans, suggesting that language barriers also influence non-equitable cardiovascular health outcomes.
Closing the gaps in hypertension care is critical to help mitigate the impact of social determinants of health (SDoH) on heart health. The purpose of the study was to investigate whether Hello Heart’s smartphone-based hypertension self-management program could achieve consistently lower systolic blood pressure (SBP) across user groups where health inequalities are known to exist.
According to the findings, all subgroups experienced better clinical outcomes by using Hello Heart, and the improvement was similar regardless of differences in race, age, and preferred language. Female participants saw a higher decrease in SBP than men. The data suggests that Hello Heart’s digital coaching tools have the potential to contribute to health equity in hypertension outcomes, especially in women.
“Unfortunately, when it comes to heart disease, disparities in care and mortality exist across gender, race, and age groups. This important study suggests that digital therapeutics could help level the playing field when it comes to heart health,” said Maayan Cohen, co-founder and CEO of Hello Heart.
The study comes at a time when regulators and health authorities, like the Surgeon General, are calling for more action when it comes to combating issues related to heart health. Organizations like the CDC have issued a call to action that employers provide tools for better blood pressure control via automated home blood pressure monitors.
Hello Heart is focused on supporting whole-heart health and committed to helping employers move the needle on DEI, including women’s health initiatives. The study’s findings were presented in detail during the American Heart Association’s Hypertension 2022 Scientific Sessions in San Diego, California, on September 9, 2022. To learn more about the results, visit the abstract.
The study, “Efficacy Of A Digital Hypertension Self-management And Lifestyle Coaching Program In Reducing Blood Pressure Across Sex, Language And Racial Groups,” was published in the American Heart Association’s journal Hypertension. There were 14,699 users in the 6-month study authored by Jennifer Roberts, MS; Brian Roach, MS; Tomer Gazit, PhD; and Shirley Mark, PhD, from Hello Heart, as well as Sanjeev Aggarwal, MD, MBA, from Beaumont Health. The researchers found that 83.6% of those with stage 2 hypertension (SBP ≥140 mmHg) at the start of the program reduced SBP, with an average reduction of 16.6 mmHg. While there was no significant difference in SBP change based on age, race, or preferred language, females had a greater reduction in SBP than males (1.4 mmHg greater). Participants were part of an employer-sponsored program to improve hypertension and were provided access to the Hello Heart program, which includes a Bluetooth-enabled blood pressure monitor and a self-management lifestyle coaching app. The app allows users to track blood pressure over time, provides daily education on readings, and enables users to share reports electronically with providers – features designed to mitigate the impacts of SDoH and improve management of hypertension.