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Are Community Health Center Patients Interested in Self-Measured Blood Pressure Monitoring (SMBP) – And Can They Do It?

Authors Roy D, Meador M, Sasu N, Whelihan K, Lewis JH

Received 7 October 2020

Accepted for publication 16 January 2021

Published 12 February 2021 Volume 2021:14 Pages 19—29


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Konstantinos Tziomalos

Debosree Roy,1 Margaret Meador,2 Nana Sasu,2 Kate Whelihan,1 Joy H Lewis1

1School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona, A.T. Still University, Mesa, Arizona, USA; 2National Association of Community Health Centers, Bethesda, MD, USA

Correspondence: Debosree Roy
School of Osteopathic Medicine in Arizona, A.T. Still University Email

Introduction: Self-measured blood pressure monitoring (SMBP) helps diagnose and manage hypertension from outside the clinic, which has implications for patient empowerment and outcomes, continuity of care, and resilience in care communities catering to vulnerable populations.
Methods: We instituted a protocol for SMBP among hypertensive patients at 9 community health centers in 3 states and administered questionnaires to patients before and after the protocol was instituted to assess knowledge and engagement with disease management, beliefs and attitudes towards, and experience doing SMBP. Questionnaires included 16 items designed to evaluate patient perceptions and beliefs about SMBP. These included a series of questions using a 5-point Likert scale, binary questions related to their perceived ability to comply with specific SMBP guidelines and open-ended questions to obtain descriptions of experiences with SMBP.
Results: The pre-questionnaire was completed by 478 patients and the post-questionnaire was completed by 372. Seventy-seven percent of respondents knew their ideal blood pressure and their engagement with blood pressure management increased significantly (p=0.0024) after completing the protocol. Additionally, 85% of respondents said that they had a positive experience doing SMBP. Open-ended responses revealed insight regarding why patients chose to do SMBP and factors patients appreciated about SMBP.
Discussion: When trained properly and supported, community health center patients are capable of and motivated to perform accurate SMBP. Our study provides evidence that health center patients can follow detailed SMBP protocols and monitor their own blood pressure from the safety of their homes, which is critical to their care continuum, particularly in days of a pandemic.

Keywords: SMBP, self-measured blood pressure monitoring, home blood pressure monitoring, patient engagement, community health centers

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