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Experts and Representatives From Leading International Health-Care Organizations Call to Stop the Hypertension Pandemic, a Worldwide Silent Killer
Date:2/4/2008

PARIS, February 4 /PRNewswire/ -- A Working Group of representatives from seven international health-care organizations call for improved blood pressure (BP) goal rate levels of patients with hypertension, the single most important cause of attributable mortality around the world. This has driven the working group to identify 5 specific concrete practical actions which are described in the January 2008 issue of the Journal of Human Hypertension(1): Detect and Prevent high BP; Assess total cardiovascular risk; Form an active partnership with the patient; Treat hypertension to goal; Create a supportive environment.

According to George Bakris, Director of the Department of Medicine, Hypertensive Diseases Center, University of Chicago School of Medicine, Chicago, USA and Steering Committee Member of the Call to Action Working Group, "these actions, if rigorously implemented by practitioners and targeted health-care systems throughout the world, should help to close the gap between our therapeutic capabilities and health-care delivery and thereby save millions of lives."

Hypertension is a silent killer which still affects over one billion people worldwide(2),(3). This number is expected to grow to 1.5 billion by 2025(3), causing millions of people to die prematurely or suffer irreversible health consequences including strokes, myocardial infarction, heart failure or kidney disease, mainly because they are not being treated to BP goal. Despite the availability of effective treatments, 75% of the overall hypertensive patients' population and even 50% of the patients treated are not at the recommended goal of 140/90 mm Hg or below(4),(5),(6). Non-adherence of patients to prescribed medication is a challenge in all chronic conditions with only 50% of patients compliant to drugs and about 10% to lifestyle changes in the US(7).

"Health-care professionals should therefore be urged to keep in mind that, even if patients feel good, it is not sufficient
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SOURCE Call to Action Working Group
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