A Randomized Pilot Trial of a Digital Health Platform To Control BP To Address Stroke Disparities

May 19, 2022

Funding Source: NIH-National Institute of Minorities and Health Disparities (NIMHD)

Amount: Total Direct and Indirect (F&A) Costs (A+B) for Entire Project Period $444,125.13

Start Date: 04/01/2022
End Date: 03/31/2024


David Kaufman, PhD, FACMI, Medical Informatics, School of Health Professions;
Aimee Afable, PhD, MPH Department of Community Health Sciences, Public Health

Key Personnel:

Mohammad Faysel, PhD, FAMIA, Medical Informatics, School of Health Professions

Adiebonye Jumbo, PhD, ITIL, Medical Informatics, School of Health Professions

Steven Levine, MD, Neurology and Emergency Medicine, School of Medicine

Jeremy Weedon, PhD, Department of Epidemiology & Biostatistics, Public Heath


Stroke is a leading cause of disability, cognitive impairment, and death. Compared to other groups, African American individuals have a higher prevalence of stroke risk factors, including hypertension, diabetes mellitus, high cholesterol, and peripheral vascular disease. These factors are compounded by differences in socioeconomic status, leading to higher stroke prevalence and mortality. However, there is growing evidence to suggest that most strokes can be prevented by controlling modifiable risk factors. The guiding assumption in this research is that interventions targeting blood pressure (BP) control in people of color can narrow racial and ethnic disparities in stroke recurrence. The proposed research leverages preliminary work by the investigative team on stroke disparities.  It uses principles of community-based participatory research to refine a digital health intervention prototype called the Digital Equity for Stroke Approach (DESA) and conduct a preliminary efficacy trial in an African American and Afro-Caribbean population in Central Brooklyn. All patients will receive a BP Monitor that will capture, store, and automatically transmit BP readings in real-time to a secure server. Patients randomized to the intervention condition will also receive enhanced caregiver support and a touch screen telehealth tablet with the necessary applications installed, and a cellular connection enabled. The longer-term objective is to build capacity for a multidisciplinary research program and a robust, high-tech, community-engaged digital health solution that will synchronize data collection and data sharing across a network of community-based organizations, healthcare systems, and academic institutions.