The Massachusetts Plan to Prevent and Manage Diabetes and Heart Disease and Stroke is an integrated strategy that builds on existing public health infrastructure. The plan supports implementation of population-wide and priority population approaches to prevent and control diabetes, heart disease, and stroke and reduce health disparities among adults. The plan simultaneously streamlines and strengthens current approaches to chronic disease prevention by crossing disease categories while strategically targeting the unequal burden of chronic disease borne by the state’s most vulnerable residents and communities. The Division of Prevention and Wellness at the Massachusetts Department will oversee the project. Collaborations are central to advancing the proposed work. MDPH will build upon its previous partnerships focused on diabetes and cardiovascular disease prevention and management to both strengthen existing efforts and broaden to new ones.
The purpose of the program is to implement population-wide and priority population approaches to prevent and manage diabetes, heart disease, and stroke and reduce health disparities among adults. The work will be done in two categories – Category A: Diabetes Management and Type 2 Diabetes Prevention and Category B: Cardiovascular Disease Prevention and Management. The proposed strategies are designed to achieve three overarching long-term goals: reduce the proportion of people with diabetes with an A1C >9 by 3%, increase the number of people with prediabetes enrolled in a CDC-recognized lifestyle change program who have achieved 5-7% weight loss by 2%, increase control among adults with known high blood pressure by 3%, and increase control of high blood cholesterol by 2%.
Many of the strategies and activities in the proposed plan will benefit a broad range of Massachusetts residents. Priority populations include those that are affected disproportionately by uncontrolled high blood pressure or at risk for diabetes due to racial, ethnic, socioeconomic or other characteristics, including inadequate access to care, poor quality of care, or low income. Our choice of target populations reflects an analysis of data on disparities both in the burden of chronic disease and on associated risk factors. In line with MDPH’s ongoing work on health equity, the plan seeks to include people with disabilities, non-English speaking populations, low-income residents, LGBT populations and others who may be inadequately served by existing programs. Many of the organizations represented in the Massachusetts Partnership for Health Promotion and Chronic Disease Prevention focus on at-risk and underserved populations. These partnerships will help us ensure that the program will be fully inclusive of these individuals, families and communities.