June 17, 2016: The RICH LIFE Study will help to lower blood pressure and heart disease risk among minority, low income, and rural populations, by comparing standard clinical performance feedback and education for providers and staff to a more comprehensive approach that includes workshops for health system leaders, a structured team approach to care, and access to subspecialists or community support as needed  for patients with hypertension  Finding effective approaches for patients to achieve better heart health helps patients and doctors to make critical decisions on real-world care for high risk patients, and our study combines tested approaches with new ideas in an innovative program that treats patients as whole people, rather than as a disease. Carefully tested interventions that show promise in improving health outcomes will give doctors, insurers, and law makers the confidence to support the widespread use of similar programs in a variety of medical settings and among other at-risk populations.

Dr. Lisa Cooper is the James F. Fries Professor of Medicine  at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Nursing,  and Bloomberg School of Public Health. She is also Vice President, Healthcare Equity, for Johns Hopkins Medicine. A board-certified general internist, social epidemiologist, and health services researcher, Dr. Cooper is an internationally recognized expert on the effectiveness of patient-centered interventions for improving health outcomes and overcoming racial and ethnic disparities in healthcare.