Door-To-Door Health Initiative Launched In Orange Mound

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(Memphis) In Orange Mound, the doctor is making house calls.

Last year, Christ Community Health Services tried out a door-to-door health care program aimed at hypertension intervention.

Thanks to a $225,000 grant from Medtronic, it plans to expand the program to reach more people in that community.

Curtis West got one of those home visits from Dr. Zech Smith.

"They wanted to come in and check our blood pressure. I thought that was great because they gave us some very helpful information and told us to check it on a regular basis. So, since they were doing an outreach in the community I got excited."

Now, West has been trained to be a lay community health worker.

He's going to his neighbor's homes to check their blood pressure and look for problems that could lead to a stroke or heart attack down the road.

"It's just an innovative way of trying something different. A lot our community members don't know that they have blood pressure. They don't have good access to health care, they don't know hos to use the health care system," said Dr. Smith.

Christ Community Health Services plans to expand the program in the Spring.

The CDC says 67 million Americans have high blood pressure, but only 31 million have it under control.