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Blood pressure killing the world's workers while banks and drug firms stand idle
Date:5/2/2008

uld reduce their odds of suffering a stroke by more than one third by taking blood pressure lowering treatments, which are now available for as little as US$ 1 per year. The cost of avoiding a very large number of fatal or disabling strokes is remarkably small, yet in Africa, for example, there is not one single population-wide initiative aimed at delivering such treatment even to those at the very highest risk. For many people in this situation, the first relevant medical attention is admission to hospital after a stroke, if they survive it, said Professor MacMahon.

Most low- and middle-income countries lack primary health care services that can provide the long-term care needed for the control of these diseases. The authors admit that tackling this issue is difficult and will require novel approaches that are economically sustainable. This requires investment in health care delivery research, which is often the Cinderella of medical science. Most international health development agencies and pharmaceutical companies believe the worlds leading health problems are likely to be resolved by the development of clever new drugs. However these will have little relevance if there is no system in place to deliver them, said Professor MacMahon.

We are calling on the major players to rethink their policies and strategies. The evidence is clear, and they have the power to bring about major change. They cant ignore it for any longer, added Professor MacMahon.


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Contact: Emma Orpilla
eorpilla@george.org.au
61-410-411-983
Research Australia
Source:Eurekalert

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