WORLD HYPERTENSION DAY 2021: PHARMACEUTICAL SOCIETY OF NIGERIA – YOUNG PHARMACISTS’ GROUP (PSN-YPG) GLOBAL CONTRIBUTION

World Hypertension Day is celebrated on the 17th of May to spread awareness about hypertension as a disease, and how it can be managed and prevented. Hypertension is a disease condition that is characterized by elevated blood pressure. It is linked to other health problems like heart disease and stroke. This condition is sometimes called ”a silent killer” because, in majority of cases, it does not display signs or symptoms, not until it gets critical. This is enough reason for citizens of all countries to prevent and control it.

The theme of World Hypertension Day 2021 is “Measure Your Blood Pressure Accurately, Control It, Live Longer.” The theme focuses on addressing low awareness rates across the globe, mainly in Low-and-Middle income areas, and accurate blood pressure measurement screening. The focus is to increase the awareness about high blood pressure (HBP) in all populations worldwide and also to focus on accurate BP measurement.

The Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria-Young Pharmacists Group was well poised to join in the global efforts to raise an awareness about the ‘silent killer’, hypertension. Prior to this important global health day, members of the group practicing in various settings across Nigeria including Community Pharmacy, Hospital Pharmacy amongst others were charged to massively participate in its commemoration on May 17th by offering free blood pressure measuring services and counseling on hypertension to all adults they come across in their workplace and appropriately document their activities for the day.

Pharmacists from different geopolitical zones of Nigeria participated in this call. Reports from these zones provided that about 200 Nigerians were screened in different centers. 57% of those screened were observed to have blood pressure readings above 140/90mmHg. 94% of those with high blood pressure readings were known hypertensives who claimed to be on Anti-hypertensive medications.

All participants screened were given proper counseling on hypertension and emphasis was placed on the non-pharmacological treatments like good nutrition, exercise, reduction of salt intake and more. Medication adherence was another key component of this counseling procedure. The PSN-YPG stresses that Pharmacists have important roles to play in improving global health and this begins from the most remote of places where they are found.

References
1) WHO Fact Sheet on Hypertension.
https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/hypertension

2) Food and Drug Agency (FDA);
https://www.fda.gov/drugs/special-features/high-blood-pressure-understanding-silent-killer

COURTESY OF PSN-YPG