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Heart Disease and Stroke: Project Proposal and Budgeting


This paper is a project proposal for the management of heart disease and stroke in Minnesota. It outlines a leadership and strategic plan for addressing the high incidences of the health conditions in the state. The first section of the paper describes the community’s health problems and explains why they are leadership problems. This section of the paper also explains how the leadership and strategy plan complements Minnesota’s Community Healthy 2020 objectives. Lastly, the second section of this paper explores the budget issues surrounding the program.

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Description of Community Health Problem

Heart disease and stroke are leading causes of adult mortality in many American states (Bisognano, Baker, & Earley, 2009). Compared to the national average, Minnesota has a relatively high incidence of heart disease and stroke (Bisognano et al., 2009). The graph below shows that both conditions are among many other non-communicable diseases that affect Minnesotans.

Prevalence of Chronic Diseases in Minnesota
Figure One: Prevalence of Chronic Diseases in Minnesota

According to 2010 statistics, heart disease, stroke, cancer, diabetes and unintentional injuries account for more than half of the main causes of death in Minnesota (Minnesota Department of Health, 2012b). These diseases come with a high social and economic cost to their victims because they require costly health care services, shorten life, and cause human suffering (Public Health Leadership Society, 2002). Based on this background, there is a need to change these health outcomes through leadership.

Why is this Health Issue a Leadership Problem?

Heart disease and strokes are both health conditions caused by lifestyle factors, such as binge drinking, smoking, poor diet and such like factors (Bisognano et al., 2009). These lifestyle factors come from personal factors and environmental conditions, which are subject to cultural and economic conditions. Leadership could influence the outcomes of these health concerns because it can change people’s lifestyle choices and behavioral risk patterns (Thomas, 2004). This assertion reinforces the views of the Minnesota Department of Health (2012b) which says three-quarters of all causes of death in America stem from lifestyle factors (mostly attributed to tobacco use, poor diet and sedentary lifestyles). Therefore, heart disease management is a leadership problem that resonates at individual and institutional levels (Jennings, Kahn, Mastroianni, & Parker, 2003). This paper highlights this fact because it emphasizes the “healthy choice” as the “easiest choice.”

How the Health Problem relates to the Healthy 2020 Objectives

The aim of the proposed health leadership program is to reduce the incidence of heart disease and stroke in Minnesota. The Minnesota Healthy 2020 plan strives to promote community health through a shared common sense approach that builds on past and present health initiatives (Minnesota Department of Health, 2012a). The health leadership program for heart diseases and strokes will complement the Healthy 2020 objectives because it focuses on two key areas – cardiovascular disease prevention and reducing injuries (disabilities caused by chronic health conditions). The health plan outlined in this paper also aligns with the Healthy Minnesota 2020 plan by complementing its broader effort to create a revolutionary health improvement framework for residents of Minnesota.

List of Potential Sources of Data

  • Health Statistics
  • Behavioral risk factor surveys
  • Meta-analyses
  • General Social Surveys
  • Online data archive for population studies
  • State Departmental Health Surveys
  • Government publications
  • Corporate reports
  • Economic handbooks
  • Funding Proposals
  • Public Health Reports

Funding Issues

Funding Issues often derail health care programs. The leadership program highlighted in this paper could similarly suffer the same fate. However, different funding issues affect the program. Some may affect its long-term effectiveness, while others may only affect its success in the short-term (Johnson, 2014). Funding issues may also affect different stakeholders in different sectors of the health leadership program. Key stakeholders that may experience its effects, in this regard, include the Minnesota community and health care workers. Funding issues may also affect accessibility as a key area of the health care program. The following section of this paper categorizes these factors into short-term and long-term challenges.


Poor Accessibility

The main aim of starting the leadership program outlined in this paper is to reach many people. Minnesota is an expansive area and the 21st most populous state in America (Anderson & Watkins, 2009, p. 115). In this regard, the region needs an elaborate leadership program that would reach all people, effectively (Public Health Leadership Society, 2002). However, health workers and stakeholders need enough resources to come up with such a program (Suarez, Lesneski, & Denison, 2011). Resource limitations (funding limitations) may affect their performance in this regard. Stated differently without proper financing to implement this program, the health care workers would only reach a few people. Funding issues may emerge because of several reasons. First, if a program depends on state or federal funding, the competition for public resources may cause the government to reduce program funding. Secondly, if the health program is private-sponsored, economic challenges, or the withdrawal of a key sponsor, may affect the sustainability of the project. The main stakeholder that is likely to experience this challenge is the Minnesota community because the leadership program aims to improve its welfare through the reduction of heart diseases and stroke. Therefore, with poor funding, residents of Minnesota would not understand the value of adopting lifestyle changes that would reduce their risk of suffering from heart diseases and strokes.

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Loss of Vital Services

The health leadership program strives to provide several services for residents of Minnesota, which directly affect their risk exposures to factors that cause heart diseases and strokes. These services may include education, screening, and health management services (Minnesota Department of Health, 2012a). Most of these services depend on proper funding to attain their goals. For example, health education requires adequate funding to pay workers, advertise for seminars and promote other platforms of interaction. Therefore, inadequate funding could lead to the loss of these vital services. However, this challenge is short-term because health care workers could seek alternative and inexpensive services to meet the same goals of the program.

Poor Access to Medications and Crisis Services

As highlighted in this report, the leadership program proposed in this paper strives to provide a holistic approach to health care services. Therefore, besides providing preventive services to the residents of Minnesota, it also strives to provide pre-diagnostic services for disease management. Since heart diseases and strokes are incurable diseases, most patients usually subscribe to a treatment regime to manage such conditions (Minnesota Department of Health, 2012a). Usually, this strategy involves giving patients adequate access to medications. However, such a strategy depends on institutional commitments and the willingness of sponsors to provide medications to patients. Albeit a last stage of the health leadership program, funding challenges may undermine the program goals. The main stakeholder affected by this process is the patients because they use medications.

Recommendations for Potential Funding Sources

Finding the right partners to finance a project could be a daunting task. In fact, Bisognano et al., (2009) say many potential sponsors do not fund a project without inviting applicants, first. Therefore, the approach that a project manager takes when seeking potential sponsors affects the financial success of a project. This paper proposes that the best candidate for sponsorship includes those that offer free grants to undertake health projects. The following alternatives are the best choices for funding the Minnesota health program

Federal Funding

Federal funding could be a good source of funding the Minnesota health plan because this government source strives to improve community health outcomes (part of the objective of government). Proponents of the program could make their applications through the official website for seeking grants (, n.d.). The Public Health Finance and Management (n.d.) supports this assertion by saying that seeking for funds through this website (, n.d.) is the quickest way of seeking federal funding and conducting a federally funded research. The main advantage of seeking federal funding is the possibility of receiving huge financial support through only one application. In this regard, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (2014) says federal funding could provide millions of dollars for one health program. Therefore, it could cover most of the financial obligations of the Minnesota health program. Furthermore, programs that receive funding from federal sources improve their credibility to other potential and alternative sponsors, such as private organizations (, n.d.). Therefore, it is the first step of seeking health care funding for the Minnesota health care program. Lastly, government funding has low variability (stability of funding over lengthy periods). In fact, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (2014) says there is a low likelihood that the government would default on paying (throughout the program’s lifetime) after approving funding. Therefore, although getting federal funding is subject to bureaucracy (Minnesota Department of Health, 2012b), it is still an attractive source of funding for the Minnesota community health project because it builds the program’s credibility to seek other sources of funding, such as corporate funding.

Corporate Funding

Corporate funding could include a group of investors who share the same goal, or view, of the Minnesota health care plan. This investment strategy is advantageous to the Minnesota health care program because it raises funds for the program without placing the risk on one entity alone (or the proponents of the program) (Bisognano et al., 2009). The main disadvantage of this funding strategy is the increased control of the corporate sponsors on the health care project. Bisognano et al., (2009) adds that although some of these corporate organizations may be silent partners, proponents of the program always need to make them happy. Compared to federal funding, corporate funding is variable because most corporate organizations prefer to peg their funding on results. Therefore, if the program fails to meet some specified goals, the organizations may withdraw their financial support (Bisognano et al., 2009). However, corporate funding is still an attractive source of funding for the Minnesota health care project because the program intends to achieve its goals. Therefore, undoubtedly, the corporate sponsors would be happy to collaborate with the community in improving health outcomes.


Bisognano, J., Baker, M., & Earley, M. (2009). Manual of Heart Failure Management. New York, NY: Springer Science & Business Media.

Jennings, B., Kahn, J., Mastroianni, A., & Parker, L. S. (2003). Ethics and public health: Model curriculum. Web.

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Minnesota Department of Health. (2012a). Healthy Minnesota 2020: Statewide Health Improvement Framework. Web.

Minnesota Department of Health. (2012b). Healthy Minnesota 2020: Chronic Disease and Injury Plan. Web.

Public Health Leadership Society. (2002). Principles of the ethical practice of public health. Web.

Thomas, J. (2004). Skills for the ethical practice of public health. Web.

Anderson, P., & Watkins, S. (2009). The State Economic Handbook 2010. New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillan.

Bisognano, J., Baker, M., & Earley, M. (2009). Manual of Heart Failure Management. New York, NY: Springer Science & Business Media. (n.d.). About Web.

Johnson, T. D. (2014). Prevention and public health fund paying off in communities: Success threatened by cuts to fund. Web.

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Minnesota Department of Health. (2012a). Healthy Minnesota 2020: Statewide Health Improvement Framework. Web.

Minnesota Department of Health. (2012b). Healthy Minnesota 2020: Chronic Disease and Injury Plan. Web.

Public Health Finance and Management. (n.d.). Search for Funding. Web.

Suarez, V., Lesneski, C., & Denison, D. (2011). Making the case for using financial indicators in local public health agencies. American Journal of Public Health, 101(3), 419–425.

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. (2014). Grants/funding. Web.

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