Approximately six in 10 Americans live with at least one chronic disease, and four in 10 live with at least two. In an effort to encourage our community to return to their health care provider for routine and preventative care, local health leaders in the Greater Nashua Public Health Region (GNPHR) developed a health promotion campaign centered around chronic disease.
Led by the City of Nashua Division of Public Health and Community Services (DPHCS), in partnership with Southern New Hampshire Health (SNHH), St. Joseph Hospital (SJH), and Dartmouth Health (DH), two billboards were developed focusing on hypertension and diabetes. The billboards run from July to October 2022 at 527 Daniel Webster Highway in Merrimack, NH, and 406 Elm Street in Milford, NH.
Chronic disease is one of the five priority areas for the 2022 Greater Nashua Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP). Community partners then ranked the priority areas they believed were most important for the GNPHR. Four criteria (burden, prevalence, resources, and impact) were used to determine the scale and magnitude of each health topic and the likelihood that interventions can lead to change. The main priorities under chronic disease include increasing prevention efforts for Type II diabetes, increasing control of hypertension, and increasing identification and treatment of depression for those with chronic disease.
Subject Matter Experts from the 2022 CHIP Chronic Disease Workgroup reviewed and provided input on campaign artwork. “The purpose of this important and timely campaign is to help individuals in our community live healthier and happier lives,” said Melissa Seccareccio, Associate Vice President of Population Health, Care Coordination and Chief Nursing Officer for Foundation Medical Partners with Southern New Hampshire Health. “We remind everyone to stay connected with their Primary Care team for ongoing care. We are here to support people in meeting their health goals throughout a lifetime.”
Delaying medical care can lead to adverse health outcomes. Based on data from the 2020 CHA, Southeast Nashua and West Milford have the highest rates of heart attack mortality in the GNPHR and 9.2% of New Hampshire adults have been diagnosed with diabetes. In the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, many patients avoided recommended health care visits to obey stay at home orders and social distancing guidance. Many providers worry about their patients whose chronic health conditions may have worsened because they didn’t seek routine care and others may have developed health issues that continue to be undiagnosed. “Every patient deserves a great primary care provider,” states Khwaja A. Hussain, MD, of Dartmouth Hitchcock Clinics Nashua.
Catherine McNamara, Director of Care Coordination at St. Joseph Hospital, says, “Primary care providers, along with RN Care Coordinators, can guide and assist you on your journey to optimum health and wellness.” Don’t wait, call your health care provider today for preventative, routine services.
For more information, we encourage you to visit the 2020 Greater Nashua Community Health Assessment and 2022 Greater Nashua Community Health Improvement Plan.