American Heart Association & Bristol Myers Squibb Foundation

American Heart Association

The American Heart Association received $1.77 million for a three year project to launch Community Health in Action, a collective impact effort involving the City of Baltimore Department of Health and Office of Minority Health, Johns Hopkins Health System and the region’s Federally Qualified Health Centers aimed at improving access and quality of cardiovascular care for low-income and vulnerable populations affected by stroke, atrial fibrillation, hypertension, and venous thromboembolism.


In the city of Baltimore, safety net populations face additional challenges to optimal health leading to a 40% higher age adjusted mortality compared to the rest of the city. This reality is compounded by a series of systemic social, political, economic and environmental obstacles. Heart disease and stroke are the number one and three causes of death in Baltimore City. Significant racial and economic disparities in Baltimore contribute to nearly a 20 year life expectancy gap between the rich and poor. Baltimore is home to over 60 Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) with over 265,000 Medicaid enrollees.


The American Heart Association (AHA) is committed to improving CVD healthcare equity and health outcomes of Baltimore communities disproportionately affected by cardiovascular diseases including stroke, atrial fibrillation, and venous thromboembolism. In the proposed project, AHA will address both the need to strengthen and better integrate systems of CVD clinical care and address non-medical needs of vulnerable populations. The launch of the Community Health in Action program will engage care teams across primary care and specialty care, community organizations, and patients to improve systems of care, improve multicultural patient engagement, and empower patients towards self-care.

Project Leader

Greg Mandell,