The HEARTS Initiative in Cuba: experience of five years of implementation

Valdés González et al.

In order to describe the changes in the control of arterial hypertension from 2016 to 2021 and the relationship between the progress made and the maturity of implementation of the HEARTS Initiative at the first level of care in Cuba, a prospective implementation study was designed to promote the correct measurement of blood pressure with validated automatic sphygmomanometers, risk-based care, introduction of standardized antihypertensive treatment protocols, secondary prevention, and teamwork. Patient education, active case-finding, and community activities were also encouraged. Data were obtained from implementation logs and were analyzed with SPSS Statistics V21; outcome values and 95% confidence intervals were reported.
Population indicators were evaluated: registration coverage, control between treatments, population control, and the HEARTS in the Americas Maturity Index. The number of participating centers increased from a single demonstration center in 2016 to 22 polyclinics in six provinces and seven municipalities in 2021. There was a significant increase in the absolute values for the total population served, number of hypertensive patients registered, controlled patients among those treated, and controlled hypertensive patients among all adults, although with annual variations in percentages of coverage, control between treatments, and population control. The greatest progress occurred in centers with high-performance health teams. Five years after implementation of the HEARTS Initiative in Cuba, the methodology is becoming institutionalized. 

Article's language
Brief communication