health

Disparities seen in treatment of hypertension

NEWS IN BRIEF — Posted May 20, 2013

Print  |   Email  |   Respond  |   Reprints  |   Like Facebook  |   Share Twitter  |   Tweet Linkedin

Although it long has been known that there are racial and ethnic disparities in the prevalence of hypertension, a new study shows that those gaps extend to the awareness of having the disease and getting treatment. The findings were published in the May 10 issue of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

Overall, hypertension awareness, control and treatment were lowest among Mexican-Americans compared with whites and blacks. Of those Mexican-Americans with hypertension, 68.7% had been told they have hypertension, 58.7% were receiving medical treatment and 35.5% had the disease controlled.

In contrast, awareness for white patients was 79.1%, while 71.2% of whites got treatment. Among blacks, 80.8% knew they had the disease, 71.9% received treatment and 43% had their levels under control.

Mexican-Americans and blacks with hypertension were significantly younger than whites with the disease, which might reflect earlier onset of the condition among those groups, the report said (link). To help remedy the problem, more efforts are needed to reduce patients’ barriers to accessing health care and low-cost medication, as well as increasing physicians’ hypertension treatment knowledge and adherence to guidelines, the authors said.

Researchers examined data on 22,992 adults 18 and older with hypertension who participated in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey between 2003 and 2010. Hypertension was defined as an average systolic blood pressure of at least 140 mmHg or a diastolic blood pressure of at least 90 mmHg. Treatment was identified as the use of blood pressure-lowering medication and did not include lifestyle or dietary approaches.

Back to top


ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISE HERE


Featured
Read story

Confronting bias against obese patients

Medical educators are starting to raise awareness about how weight-related stigma can impair patient-physician communication and the treatment of obesity. Read story


Read story

Goodbye

American Medical News is ceasing publication after 55 years of serving physicians by keeping them informed of their rapidly changing profession. Read story


Read story

Policing medical practice employees after work

Doctors can try to regulate staff actions outside the office, but they must watch what they try to stamp out and how they do it. Read story


Read story

Diabetes prevention: Set on a course for lifestyle change

The YMCA's evidence-based program is helping prediabetic patients eat right, get active and lose weight. Read story


Read story

Medicaid's muddled preventive care picture

The health system reform law promises no-cost coverage of a lengthy list of screenings and other prevention services, but some beneficiaries still might miss out. Read story


Read story

How to get tax breaks for your medical practice

Federal, state and local governments offer doctors incentives because practices are recognized as economic engines. But physicians must know how and where to find them. Read story


Read story

Advance pay ACOs: A down payment on Medicare's future

Accountable care organizations that pay doctors up-front bring practice improvements, but it's unclear yet if program actuaries will see a return on investment. Read story


Read story

Physician liability: Your team, your legal risk

When health care team members drop the ball, it's often doctors who end up in court. How can physicians improve such care and avoid risks? Read story