American Heart Month

February is American Heart Month


On December 30, 1963, President Lyndon B Johnson declared by order of proclamation that February would be American Heart Month. The first American Heart Month took place in February 1964. At that time more than half the deaths in the United States were caused by cardiovascular disease. Of the 10 million Americans afflicted, half were afflicted during their most productive years which resulted in a staggering physical and economic loss to the nation.

Current State of Heart Disease
At 17.3 million deaths, annually, heart disease and stroke remain the leading global cause of death. This number is expected to rise to more than 23.6 million by 2030. The educational efforts, that began 53 years ago, have made a difference. Currently, 27.6 million adults are diagnosed with heart disease which represents 11.5% of the population. Despite the improvements, our work in this industry is not done. Since 2014, Heart Disease remains the leading cause of death in the United States (US). With over 3.7 million patients hospitalized in 2010, Heart Disease remains the 2nd leading cause of hospitalization in the US behind childbirth with 3.9 million deaths. The most expensive procedures performed in 2015, across all ages, were heart related with heart valve procedures representing the highest cost at $51,425 per procedure.

What can you do?
The first thing to do is become informed. The next step is to take your knowledge and take charge of your health. You are your own best advocate. According to the American Heart Association knowing your cholesterol is vitally important, as too much cholesterol and fats can build up causing the arteries to narrow and diminishing the blood flow. This causes the heart, brain and other organs to lose its blood supply and with it oxygen and cause a heart attack or stroke. Know your numbers:

  • Cholesterol-Talk to your doctor about your numbers and how they impact you.
  • Body Mass Index (BMI) should be less than or equal to 25kg/m2
  • Blood Pressure of less than 120/80 mm/Hg
  • Fasting blood sugar of less than or equal to 100mg/dl
  • Exercise at least 150 minutes a week of moderate intensity exercise, such as brisk walking. 30 minutes a day, 5 days a week are easier numbers to remember.

The importance of Diabetes prevention and management cannot be over stressed. Diabetes is a major risk factor for stroke and heart disease. Uncontrolled Diabetes causes damage to your body’s blood vessels making them more prone to damage from high blood pressure and high cholesterol.
What do we do?
Select Data will continue to do what we do best and that is to ensure that the most accurate story of the patient is told in the way our researchers, government, and payers understand, through your patients’ codes. Accurate diagnosis coding provides scientists, clinical leaders, thought leaders and yes, the finance leaders with information about our population. It’s through this information they know about the population you serve, how sick your patients are, and what their true needs are. Without accurate data, diagnosis codes, smart decisions can’t be made. These diagnoses along with the data collected via the OASIS and other data collection instruments provide decision makers with valuable information on how to distribute funds, what regulations to change, where to focus research and ultimately the best setting for patient care. Each document reviewed, every code assigned paints a picture of your patient, your agency and your care. Select Data will continue to ensure that it’s correct. It’s what we do.


Check out our FREE 30-minute webinar for OASIS-C2 corrections and more. Select Connects with Clinicians webinar on December 14, 2016. Click here to read more.

Select Data is committed to a strong compliance program that includes educating all personnel on mitigating HIPAA breaches. For more information about Select Data and their commitment to quality in Home Health and Hospice, call 1.800. 332.0555.

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