Stagnating rates of blood pressure control in Australia: insights from opportunistic screening of 10 046 participants of the May Measurement Month campaigns

Revathy Carnagarin, Janis M. Nolde, Jun Yang, Francine Z. Marques, Dean S. Picone, Gavin W. Lambert, Thomas Beaney, Neil R. Poulter, Aletta E. Schutte, Christopher M. Reid, Derrin Brockman, Markus P. Schlaich

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: Raised blood pressure (BP) remains the single most important modifiable risk factor contributing to cardiovascular and all-cause mortality in Australia and worldwide. May Measurement Month, a global BP measurement and screening campaign initiated by the International Society of Hypertension and carried out in Australia since its inception in 2017, aimed at obtaining standardized BP measurements from members of the community to increase awareness of high BP and its associated risks.

Method: Adults participants (=18 years) were recruited through opportunistic sampling across Australia during the month of May in 2017, 2018 and 2019. Trained volunteers recorded BP readings in a standardized manner and collected data on demographic, lifestyle factors and comorbidities. Hypertension was defined as SBP of at least 140 mmHg, or DBP of at least 90 mmHg, or taking antihypertensive medication. Data were collated centrally and analysis was carried out using regression models to evaluate the associations between BP and participant characteristics.

Results: A total of 10 046 participants were screened, of whom 3097 (31.0%) had hypertension, only 48.5% were aware of their condition and 44.4% were taking antihypertensive medication. Of those taking antihypertensive medication, 53.2% were controlled to less than 140/90 mmHg, whereas the remaining 46.8% of participants had BP of at least 140/90 mmHg suggestive of inadequately treated hypertension.

Conclusion: Consecutive data obtained over a 3-year period in Australia demonstrated stagnating awareness, treatment and control rates with the latter two being substantially lower than global rates and those in other high-income countries. Concerted efforts from all stakeholders will be required to help overcome the unacceptably poor rates of BP treatment and control in Australia.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)632-637
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Hypertension
Volume41
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2023

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