High blood pressure is a silent killer, but experts say Australia hasn’t done enough to tackle it

Australia should not underestimate the risk of high blood pressure, the main cause behind most deaths and illnesses in the country, a group of leading Australian experts warn.

However 1 in 5 adults– More than 4 million Australians – suffer from high blood pressure, also known as high blood pressure, and researchers have found that many of them are not receiving appropriate treatment. 50 percent of them I haven’t noticed.

“Blood pressure is the main cause of death, and many are unaware of it,” said the lead author, Professor Fellow of the George Institute for Global Health and Professor of Cardiovascular Medicine at UNSW Sydney. Alta Schutte says.

“Awareness is the first step because you can’t do anything without it.”

“Once it’s covered, you can start treating it. […] If you treat people and their blood pressure is not low enough, treatment needs to be improved. And there are different ways to do that. That’s where Australia has a gap. “

Experts estimate that if all Australians living with high blood pressure receive proper treatment, they can save as many as 83,000 lives, resulting in a profit of $ 91.6 billion. Reducing the incidence of high blood pressure by just a quarter can save 37,000 lives and return $ 34.3 billion to the economy.

However, elevated blood pressure is a major risk factor for major adverse outcomes such as coronary heart disease, stroke, and dementia, and is the “top three murderers” of Australians, Schütte said. He said there was no urgency to deal with it.

“Elevated blood pressure should be at the forefront and central to the country’s health agenda, but instead, attention is now being focused on better control of the illnesses it causes.”

“In the United States last year […] The medical director has issued a national call for action to improve blood pressure control, but it’s getting worse here, and no one is doing anything. “

In Australia, elevated blood pressure is ticking behind 43% of coronary heart disease, 41% of stroke, about one-third of chronic kidney disease and atrial fibrillation, and just under 4% of cases of dementia. It is presumed to be a bomb that makes a heart.

“While managing these conditions is undoubtedly important, improving hypertension awareness and screening and improving blood pressure control are likely to achieve significant public health implications.” Schutte added.

Report Australian Institute of Health and Welfare We have shown that only one-third of cases of hypertension are managed. This means that more than two-thirds of Australians with elevated blood pressure were not properly managed. This situation has not improved in the last 10 years.

Epoch Times Photo
Percentage of people with hypertension, 2017-18. (ABS)

Markus Schlaich, President of the Australian Hypertension Research Council, addresses issues, including establishing a national task force on blood pressure, prioritizing research funding, and implementing various measures to improve population awareness, prevention and screening. Recommended a three-step roadmap for. ..

“The government’s recent announcement of a new Medicare benefit schedule item for 24-hour ambulatory blood pressure monitoring to improve the diagnosis of hypertension is a good start, but more can be done to address this imminent health problem. I believe there are many, “Schleich said.

High blood pressure is often referred to as a “silent killer” because most people with high blood pressure are asymptomatic, said Professor Gary Jennings, Chief Medical Advisor and Interim CEO of the Heart Foundation.

“The good news is that you can control high blood pressure, but our data show that 15% of Australians aged 45-74 have missed checking their blood pressure in the last two years,” he said. I did.

Nina Nguyen


Nina Nguyen is a Sydney-based Vietnamese reporter with a focus on Australian news. Contact her at [email protected]