Blog | Wednesday, September 5, 2012

QD: News Every Day--Nine of 10 with uncontrolled hypertension have health care coverage

Nearly 90% of U.S. adults with uncontrolled hypertension have a usual source of health care and insurance, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported.

Researchers analyzed data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey from 2003 to 2010 to estimate the prevalence of hypertension awareness and treatment among adults with uncontrolled hypertension. Three groups were sought: those who are unaware of their hypertension, those who are aware but not treated, and those who are aware and treated with medication but still have uncontrolled hypertension.

Hypertension was defined as an average systolic blood pressure greater than 140 mm Hg or an average diastolic blood pressure greater than 90 mm Hg, or currently using blood pressure–lowering medication.

Results appeared in MMWR.

The overall prevalence of hypertension among U.S. adults was 30.4%, or nearly 67 million people. Among those with hypertension, 53.5% had uncontrolled hypertension. Among these, an estimated nearly 40% (14.1 million people) were unaware of their hypertension, nearly 16% (5.7 million people) were aware of their hypertension but not treating it with medicine, and nearly 45% (16 million were aware of and treating it.

Of the 35.8 million U.S. adults with uncontrolled hypertension, 89.4% reported having a usual source of health care, and 85.2% reported having health insurance.

"Increased focus on BP (blood pressure) from clinicians and health-care systems is essential for improving hypertension control, with all health-care providers participating, not just primary-care providers," the authors concluded.