Engaging Hearts and Minds: Pathways to Equitable Cardiovascular Care

This activity is part of a series


Monica E. Peek, MD, MPH, MSc
Ellen H. Block Professor of Health Justice in the Department of Medicine
Associate Director, Chicago Center for Diabetes Translation Research
Director of Research, MacLean Center for Clinical Medical Ethics
The University of Chicago
Chicago, IL
Monica E. Peek, MD, MPH, MSc

Monica Peek, MD, MPH, MSc is an Ellen H. Block Professor of Health Justice in the Department of Medicine. She is also the Associate Director, Chicago Center for Diabetes Translation Research, and Director of Research, MacLean Center for Clinical Medical Ethics. She is a practicing internist, medical educator, and clinician investigator. Her research pursues health equity and social justice, with a focus on promoting equitable doctor/patient relationships among racial minorities, integrating the medical and social needs of patients, and addressing health care discrimination and structural racism impacting health outcomes (e.g., diabetes, COVID-19). Dr. Peek has authored more than 200 peer-reviewed publications and abstracts on health care disparities, diversity, and bias; has been the principal investigator of multiple grants to address health disparities; and has been invited to speak at numerous local and national medical meetings.

Utibe R. Essien, MD, MPH
Assistant Professor of Medicine
Assistant Vice Chair, Equity Diversity and Inclusion
Department of Medicine
David Geffen School of Medicine at University of California, Los Angeles
Los Angeles, CA
Utibe R. Essien, MD, MPH

Utibe R. Essien, MD, MPH, is an assistant professor and health equity researcher at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, recently recruited there after an outstanding tenure as a junior faculty member at the University of Pittsburgh. Dr. Essien’s research focuses on racial disparities in the use of novel medications and technologies in the management of cardiovascular diseases. He is a fierce advocate for diversity and equity in medicine and is a highly sought-after speaker on racism and health. He also co-directed a podcast series on “Antiracism in Medicine.” Dr. Essien’s leadership in advancing health equity has resulted in several national awards, including the National Minority Quality Forum’s 40-Under-40 Leaders in Minority Health Award and the Association of American Medical Colleges’ Herbert W. Nickens Faculty Fellowship Award. He was also named one of the “30 Leaders Under 40 Transforming Healthcare” by Business Insider and one of the “20 Top Black Physician Social Media Influencers in 2020” by Medscape.

Statement of Need

Racism, not race, is a major driver of differential health outcomes in the United States. Data from recent studies reveal the destructive impact of structural racism and discrimination on cardiovascular (CV) health in underserved racial and ethnic communities. For example, there is compelling evidence showing increased hypertension in communities of color, including younger patients; suboptimal prescription of direct oral anticoagulants (DOACs) for stroke prophylaxis in Black patients with atrial fibrillation; and a deficit in the use of guideline-directed medical therapy (GDMT) for type 2 diabetes, obesity, dyslipidemia, and heart failure in marginalized communities.

In this CME Outfitters Snack, Drs. Utibe Essien and Monica Peek engage in a frank and candid discussion on the real-world impact of racism and disparities on cardiovascular care.  In addition to identifying the problems, they offer sound advice and pathways for improvement, including how to invite shared decision making with patients, how to inquire about social determinants of health, and how to move from “awareness” of disparities in cardiovascular care, to “implementation” of strategies to improve the situation.

Learning Objectives

  • Assess the impact of racism and discrimination on cardiology care and patient outcomes.
  • Examine the impact of primary prevention on improvements in cardiac health in underserved patients.
  • Implement shared decision-making strategies that consider racism and SDoH to improve quality of cardiology care and patient outcomes.

Financial Support

Supported by educational grant from CVS Health.

Target Audience

Physicians, nurses, pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, physician associates (PAs), nurse practitioners (NPs), and other health care clinicians within the CVS, Aetna, and CareMark networks.


Credit Inbformation

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Interprofessional (IPCE) 0.5

This activity was planned by and for the healthcare team, and learners will receive 0.5 Interprofessional Continuing Education (IPCE) Credit for learning and change.

Physicians (ACCME) 0.5

CME Outfitters, LLC, designates this enduring activity for a maximum of 0.5 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

Nurses (ANCC) 0.5

This activity is designated for 0.5 contact hours.

Note for California Nurses

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Pharmacists/Pharmacy Tech (ACPE) 0.5

This application-based activity is approved for 0.5 contact hours (0.05 CEUs) of continuing pharmacy credit.
Activity UANs: Pharmacist JA0007185-0000-23-048-H01-P
Pharmacy Technician JA0007185-0000-23-048-H01-T

MIPS Improvement Activity

Completion of this accredited CME activity meets the expectations of an Accredited Safety or Quality Improvement Program (IA_PSPA_28) for the Merit-based Incentive Payment Program (MIPS). Clinicians should submit their improvement activities by attestation via the CMS Quality Payment Program website.

PAs (AAPA) 0.5

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Successful completion of this CME activity, which includes participation in the evaluation component, enables the participant to earn up to 0.5 medical knowledge MOC points in the American Board of Internal Medicine's (ABIM) Maintenance of Certification (MOC) program. Participants will earn MOC points equivalent to the amount of CME credits claimed for the activity. It is the CME activity provider's responsibility to submit participant completion information to ACCME for the purpose of granting ABIM MOC credit.

Royal College MOC

Through an agreement between the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education and the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, medical practitioners participating in the Royal College MOC Program may record completion of accredited activities registered under the ACCME’s “CME in Support of MOC” program in Section 3 of the Royal College’s MOC Program.

Disclosure Declaration

It is the policy of CME Outfitters, LLC, to ensure independence, balance, objectivity, and scientific rigor and integrity in all of their CE activities. Faculty must disclose to the participants any relationships with commercial companies whose products or devices may be mentioned in faculty presentations, or with the commercial supporter of this CE activity. CME Outfitters, LLC, has evaluated, identified, and mitigated any potential conflicts of interest through a rigorous content validation procedure, use of evidence-based data/research, and a multidisciplinary peer review process.

Dr. Peek reports no financial relationships to disclose.

Dr. Essien reports no financial relationships to disclose.


Disclosures were obtained from the CME Outfitters, LLC staff; no disclosures to report:

  • Jeffrey Helfand, DO (peer reviewer)
  • Warren Beckman (planning committee)
  • Thomas Mitchell (planning committee)
  • Susan H. Yarbrough, CHCP (planning committee)
  • Sandra Caballero, PharmD (planning committee)
  • Sharon Tordoff (planning committee)

Faculty of this CE activity may include discussions of products or devices that are not currently labeled for use by the FDA. The faculty have been informed of their responsibility to disclose to the audience if they will be discussing off-label or investigational uses (any uses not approved by the FDA) of products or devices.

Obtaining Credit

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Engaging Hearts and Minds: Pathways to Equitable Cardiovascular Care
Event Date: 04/28/2023