Heart Healthy Eating Lifestyles Program (Heart HELP)

Brief Description
In the United States, CVD is responsible for one third of all deaths and $430 billion in direct and indirect costs yearly . Similarly, it accounts for nearly one fourth of the deaths in Los Angeles County . Heart HELP is a comprehensive intervention and prevention focused program designed by the Los Angeles Chronic Disease Management Consortium (CDMC). The program works to reduce risk, delay onset, and/or reduce progression of cardiovascular disease for low-income, ethnically diverse populations in Los Angeles County. At its core are two distinct activities: 1) Outreach and 2) Lifestyle workshops. Outreach includes community education, risk assessments, and medical referrals. The lifestyle workshops focus on modifiable risk factor reduction, especially in the areas of nutrition, physical activity, and smoking cessation. The program draws upon components of CDMC’s proven-successful Healthy Eating Lifestyles (HELP) program curriculum. To help ensure collaborating hospitals are successful in achieving these outcomes, the National Health Foundation provides oversight of program implementation, facilitation and evaluation.

Measured or Anticipated Outcomes
  • Provide comprehensive CVD prevention and management focused educational workshops to over 2,000 individuals in Los Angeles County.
  • Improve community members’ knowledge about CVD risk factors by providing risk assessment screenings and making linkages to program and hospital services when appropriate.
  • Patients are expected to reduce their BMI and reach or make progress toward reaching normal blood pressure and cholesterol levels as well as demonstrate improved behaviors and knowledge related to healthy eating, exercise, and lifestyle choices.
  • Provide participating hospitals and community clinics with access to CVD programming and resources for patients in need of such services.
  • Improve the health of communities by reducing their risk of individuals diagnosed with CVD.

Policy Implications
  • Demonstrate best practices for a successful community-based CVD prevention and intervention program program.

Funding for the planning phase of this program was generously provided by the Good Hope Medical Foundation and Watts Health Foundation.

Key Partners
The Chronic Disease Management Consortium (CDMC) which includes California Hospital Medical Center, Good Samaritan Hospital and Huntington Hospital as well as the Southside Coalition of Community Clinics.

For more information, please contact Mia Arias, Program Director at Marias@nhfca.org