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Press Release

May 19, 2015

The American Heart Association and Kaiser Permanente invite community health and thought-leaders involved with high blood pressure research and programs to come together for a Twitter chat about new research, best practices and potential solutions for tackling ethnicity-based disparity gaps in high blood pressure control and stroke incidence. Kaiser Permanente clinicians will share insights from the health care system's significant success in closing the racial disparity in hypertension control. A particular focus will be on high blood pressure control disparities among African Americans:

  • There are racial disparities in the likelihood of keeping blood pressure under control (below 140/90 mm Hg), with the odds of control being 27 percent lower in blacks than in whites.
  • High blood pressure is the leading cause of stroke and the most important controllable risk factor for stroke.
  • Blacks have twice the risk for first-ever stroke than whites.

When: Wednesday, May 27, 1 p.m. PT, 4 p.m. ET

Follow:  #HBPLeaderChat

Moderator:  Nancy Brown, CEO, American Heart Association – @NancyatHeart

Hosts:  American Heart Association – @American_Heart
Kaiser Permanente – @StrokeStudy


  • Willie Lawrence, MD, chief of cardiology at Research Medical Center, national HBP spokesperson for American Heart Association
  • Mai N. Nguyen-Huynh, MD, principal investigator of Kaiser Permanente's Shake Rattle and Roll study of African Americans and stroke; @strokestudy,
  • Michael Rakotz, MD, director of chronic disease prevention, American Medical Association
  • Herman Taylor, former director of Jackson Heart Study and AHA board member
  • Kimberly Whelan, lifestyle coach, Kaiser Permanente's Shake, Rattle and Roll study
  • Winston Wong, MD, medical director, Kaiser Permanente Community Benefit
  • Janet Wright, executive director, Million Hearts Initiative
  • Joseph D. Young, MD, Kaiser Permanente physician and American Heart Associaton 2013 Stroke Hero


A panel of medical and community leaders will take part in a moderated Twitter chat.

Other high blood pressure program or healthcare leaders from around the country are encouraged to join the discussion, ask questions and share their experience in managing high blood pressure patients and programs.

Media are invited to follow the conversation and ask questions.

American Heart Association – Maggie Francis,
Kaiser Permanente – Janet Byron,, @kpdor