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More than $14 million in research grants awarded for health technology solutions focused on heart and brain health, including special projects related to COVID-19 and CVD

“The widespread consumer adoption of healthcare technology, fueled by increasingly sophisticated technology on digital mediums including tablets, smartphones and wearable devices, offers a unique outlet to find new solutions to improve health outcomes,” said American Heart Association president Robert A. Harrington, M.D., FAHA, Arthur L. Bloomfield Professor of Medicine and chair of the department of medicine at Stanford University. “As the peer review team moved forward with their selection of the centers for our latest Strategically Focused Research Network right at the break of the COVID-19 pandemic in the U.S., the Association felt this was an incredible opportunity for us to provide additional support in harnessing new innovations to tackle the challenges that are crippling the nation, and frankly the globe.”

Research teams at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, The Johns Hopkins University, Stanford University School of Medicine and the University of Michigan will receive $2.5 million each for their individual projects aimed at reducing health care disparities, empowering people to better manage their health and wellness, and enhancing patient/provider connectivity. Together, they’ll also receive $4 million to work collectively on at least one highly impactful project and form a national Health Technology Research Collaborative. The Collaborative may ultimately serve as an American Heart Association research ‘think tank’ to assist with identifying, creating, testing and bringing to scale future innovative health technologies.

Center for Heart Health Technology (H2T): Innovation to Implementation at Stanford University – Led by Mintu Turakhia, M.D. M.A.S., Executive Director of Stanford’s Center for Digital Health, associate professor of medicine and a cardiac electrophysiologist at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System, the H2T Center’s mission is to rapidly develop technologies that address unmet needs for heart health, evaluate them quickly and then implement these solutions at scale. The team will address the issue of high blood pressure, which affects more than 115 million Americans and costs the U.S. health care system more than $22 billion each year. The team will develop a clinician- and patient-facing digital health system for semi-automated management and evidence-based titration of blood pressure medications. The app will be tested in a randomized trial conducted in Northern California and New Jersey in people of different races, educations and backgrounds and in a population of gig economy workers (rideshare drivers), who can be at increased risk of heart disease.

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