High blood pressure, or hypertension, is a major risk factor for cardiovascular disease (CVD). With this condition, over time, the force of the blood against artery walls is high enough to potentially cause serious health problems like heart disease, heart attack and/or stroke.
CVD refers to disorders of the heart and blood vessels and include coronary heart disease, cerebrovascular disease, rheumatic heart disease, and other conditions. They account for the largest percentage of mortality worldwide.
Four out of five CVD deaths are due to heart attacks and strokes. Individuals at risk of CVD may also suffer from high blood pressure, high blood glucose, high cholesterol, and high body mass index (BMI). .
Quick Facts about Hypertension
- One in three adults worldwide – over 1 billion people – have hypertension.
- Hypertension contributes to roughly half of all deaths from stroke and heart disease.
- Over 75% of deaths from cardiovascular diseases occurs in low- and middle-income countries.
- Hypertension often does not cause symptoms in its early stages, and thus, the condition often goes undiagnosed.
- For those who are diagnosed, access to treatment and lifestyle interventions to help control the disease is not always available.
- Since hypertension is recognized as a risk factor for other noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) – including stroke, kidney failure and ischemic heart disease – preventing and managing high blood pressure is necessary for overall health and wellbeing.
Integrated NCD programs implemented through a primary health care approach are an affordable and sustainable way for countries to tackle hypertension.
PSI’s programs in India, Kenya, Ethiopia, Myanmar, and Vietnam provide access to information, screening and treatment to those at risk of developing the condition.
We work directly with both formal and informal providers to strengthen their ability to offer patients and communities care and support to manage hypertension and other chronic conditions. Our programs equip physicians, nurses, pharmacists, and community educators with tools and resources to educate and inform their clients about the risk of hypertension, prevention measures, treatment options, and lifestyle changes that can improve overall health.
Through our network members, we currently offer hypertension screening and treatment programs in Lesotho, India and Vietnam. Together, these programs aim to screen approximately 470,000 adult men and women for major NCDs like hypertension and Type 2 diabetes. These programs also train health providers – physicians, nurses, pharmacists, community mobilizers — to improve their ability to support clients through increased awareness, screening, treatment and referral services.
PSI partners with global leaders on hypertension detection and management. Our hypertension screening and treatment programs in Asia (India, Myanmar and Vietnam) and Africa (Ethiopia, Kenya and Lesotho) provide access to information, screening and treatment to those who have hypertension, as well as those at risk of developing the disease.
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Posters from PSI/Vietnam's Know Your Numbers hypertension campaign.
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Posters from India's Project UDAY campaign to increase awareness and access.