Results from new Hypertension Management Program study to be revealed at
American Society of Hypertension Scientific Meeting by Heart and Stroke
Foundation of Ontario researcher Dr. Sheldon Tobe
TORONTO, May 25, 2011 /CNW/ - High blood pressure - the silent killer -
is taking a hit from a new, ground-breaking treatment program from the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Ontario.
Last Sunday, in New York City, Dr. Sheldon Tobe, Chair of the Canadian Hypertension Education Program (CHEP) and a
long-standing Heart and Stroke Foundation researcher, unveiled a new
and powerful tool in the management of hypertension at the American
Society of Hypertension (ASH) Scientific Meeting - The Heart&Stroke Hypertension Management Program.
"Diagnosing high blood pressure (hypertension) and lowering it in one
patient is relatively simple," says Dr. Tobe. "But keeping the pressure
down in hypertensives across the entire country has proven to be a
formidable challenge for patients and healthcare systems."
To test and quantify the efficacy of the Hypertension Management
Program, a three-year demonstration phase was launched in 11 primary
care sites (10 family health teams and one community health centre) in
communities across Ontario, including Beamsville, Brighton, Deep River,
Dryden, Kitchener, Mount Forest, North Bay, Shelburne, Toronto,
Vermillion Bay, and Windsor.
The Hypertension Management Program consists of healthcare provider
education and tools as well as patient specific tools to facilitate
blood pressure management and control by providers and self-management
by patients. After the initial intervention at the start of the study,
the Family Health Teams continued delivering the program on their own.
"More than 3,600 patients participated in the Canadian study and blood
pressure fell quickly. Remarkably after three years, patients with a
diagnosis of hypertension had sustained average blood pressure
reductions of 6.4/3.8 mmHg," said Dr. Tobe. The Heart&Stroke
Hypertension Management Program has resulted in 41% more people in
these 11 primary-care centres across Ontario keeping their high blood
pressure under control.
Even modest reductions in blood pressure can dramatically decrease the
incidence of cardiovascular disease.
A reduction of 5 mm Hg in systolic in blood pressure translates into:
A 14% drop in stroke mortality
A 9% drop in coronary heart disease and
A 7% reduction in overall mortality
It has been shown that effective blood pressure control can reduce the
incidence of stroke by up to 40%!
"This study is showing us that in hypertension, a simple inexpensive
education intervention can lead to the sustained achievement of blood
pressure control for at least three years," Dr. Tobe says.
Dr. Mel Cescon of the New Vision Family Health Team in Kitchener says,
"Our team was able to transfer and adapt this protocol to the diagnosis
and early treatment of other chronic conditions such as diabetes."
The Canadian program will assist family physicians and healthcare
providers in achieving those elusive, sustained, reductions in
hypertension. Supported in large part by the Ontario government, the
Heart and Stroke Foundation of Ontario collaborated with the Ontario
College of Family Physicians, the Registered Nurses' Association of
Ontario and the Ontario Pharmacists' Association to create the program.
In 2005, cardiovascular disease cost Canada more than $21 billion a year
in healthcare and lost productivity. That number is expected to climb
to more than $28 billion by 2020.
The U.S. Agency for Healthcare Quality and Research has reported that
Americans spent $29 billion for prescription cardiovascular drugs alone
"Getting hypertension under control is one way of greatly reducing the
hemorrhage of taxpayers' money," said Dr. Tobe. "For patients in the
Canadian and American healthcare systems, for care-givers and
administrators alike, the implementation of the Heart&Stroke
Hypertension Management Program will prove beneficial financially and
in terms of public health. It is imperative that we get guideline-based
programs like this into everyday primary care practice right across
BEST EVIDENCE POINTS THE WAY
The new protocol is guided by best practice principles.
The Heart&Stroke Hypertension Management Program demonstrates that an
evidence-informed inter-professional primary healthcare provider
educational intervention can successfully integrate into the practice
of primary care clinicians to improve the management and control of
hypertension in their patients.
A GLOBAL PERSPECTIVE
According to the World Health Organization, hypertension is a major
cause of disability and is the leading risk factor for premature death,
causing an estimated 7.5 million deaths per year globally. More than
one third of the world's population suffers from high blood pressure
and cardiovascular disease.
The number of baby boomers headed for the high risk years for
cardiovascular disease is expected to create unique stress on
healthcare systems all over the world.
"These made-in-Canada results should give healthcare professionals,
healthcare economists and everyone with high blood pressure cause to
rejoice," said David Sculthorpe, CEO of the Heart and Stroke Foundation
Want to find out more about hypertension and global health? Visit:
For healthcare providers, the support system includes:
Hypertension Flowsheet charting tool in both paper and electronic
formats, with built in prompts to guide the healthcare provider during
the patient's visit and to record the patient's progress and care plan;
Confidential practice reports, produced through a secure web-based data
repository that enable providers to know how well their patients are
doing over time and compared with other participating sites;
Tape measures with waist circumference risk markers.
For patients, the self-management resources offered by healthcare
An education booklet
A log book
Information fact sheets
Consumer e-tools such as "My Heart&Stroke Blood Pressure Action Plan"
and "My Heart&Stroke Risk Assessment" - which provide confidential risk
assessment, an opt-in program for email support and the ability to
track/monitor blood pressure and progress.
French translation available. Disponible en français.
SOURCE Heart and Stroke Foundation of Ontario
For further information:
Diane Hargrave Public Relations, 416-467-9954 x104 cell 416-826-5911