Hypertension is a major cause of a range of health problems such as strokes, heart attacks and kidney disease. Many people who suffer from hypertension are not aware that they have it as there can be no symptoms. According to the World Health Organisation," More than one billion people around the world live with hypertension (high blood pressure), which is a major cause of cardiovascular disease and premature death worldwide.
"The burden of hypertension is felt disproportionately in low- and middle-income countries, where two thirds of cases are found, largely due to increased risk factors in those populations in recent decades. What’s more, around half of people living with hypertension are unaware of their condition, putting them at risk of avoidable medical complications and death."
Keeping in mind the effects of hypertension on one's long-term health, every year on May 17th World Hypertension Day is celebrated. The day is organised by the World Hypertension League (WHL) which is an umbrella organisation composed of 85 hypertension societies and leagues from all over the world. The main aim is to educate and increase awareness amongst people on hypertension commonly known as high blood pressure.
This year the theme is 'Measure Your Blood Pressure Accurately, Control It, Live Longer,' focusing on combating low awareness rates worldwide, especially in low to middle income areas, and accurate blood pressure measurement methods.
According to the World Hypertension League, choosing this theme is based on global statistics to increase awareness of hypertension. "There are two critical components: (1) establish high‐capacity community screening programmes for recognition of high BP in those at risk, and (2) promote routine measurement of BP by health‐care professionals at all clinical encounters.
"An important initial step for control of hypertension and achievement of the United Nations 2025 goal for a 25% reduction in uncontrolled hypertension is to improve hypertension diagnosis. Enhanced BP screenings through activities of the WHD will contribute to achieving this goal."