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Team-based approaches needed to fight high blood pressure
Date:11/15/2013

Uncontrolled high blood pressure rates continue to grow despite the availability of proven treatments, but collaborative approaches can be effective in fighting this deadly disease, according to a science advisory from the American Heart Association, the American College of Cardiology and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The advisory is a call to action for healthcare systems and providers to work in closer partnership with patients, and it calls for local, regional and national programs that offer coordinated care using multiple resources to achieve better blood pressure control in all patients.

"Despite access to health care, effective therapies that have been available for 50 years, and various education and quality improvement efforts that have been targeted at patients and healthcare providers, achieving success in hypertension control is still a challenge," said Alan S. Go, M.D., Director of the Comprehensive Clinical Research Unit at Kaiser Permanente Northern California and lead author of the advisory.

High blood pressure readings at or above 140/90 millimeters of mercury affects about 1 in 3 Americans and is a major risk factor for heart disease and stroke. Of those who have high blood pressure, also called hypertension, about 75 percent are being treated but only half have it controlled to a healthy level, according to national surveys.

The advisory recommends that healthcare, industry and communities prioritize people with high blood pressure who are receiving treatment but haven't achieved their target blood pressure. The writing group members note that of those with uncontrolled hypertension, nearly 90 percent see a healthcare provider regularly, and 85 percent have health insurance.

"A multi-partner environment may be beneficial to reach people with high blood pressure and ensure that their condition is being treated maximally, and to reduce disparities in high blood pressure control," said Willie Lawrence, M.
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Contact: Carrie Thacker
carrie.thacker@heart.org
214-706-1665
American Heart Association
Source:Eurekalert

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