Ministry of Health and Prevention launches updated Hypertension Guide for 2019

The Ministry of Health and Prevention (MOHAP) has launched the updated version of the Hypertension Guideline 2019 to build capacity of healthcare providers and deliver the best preventive and therapeutic services for patients with hypertension.

The Hypertension Guideline 2019, which was updated as per the 2018 ESC/ESH guidelines for the management of arterial Hypertension, aims to increase the awareness of community members on the importance of early detection of high blood pressure and highlight the seriousness of its complications on public health.

The ministry launched the guideline during a training workshop, which was organized on Thursday (September 12) at the InterContinental Dubai Festival City in the presence of Dr. Hussein Abdel-Rahman Al-Rand, Under-Secretary Assistant of Health Centers and Clinics Sector, Dr. Aisha Suhail, Director of Primary Health Care Department, and Dr. Buthaina Abdullah bin Belaila, Head of the non-communicable Diseases section, MOHAP. Additionally, more than 100 employees from MOHAP’s relevant departments participated in the workshop.

Silent Killer

Dr. Al-Rand pointed that high blood pressure (The silent killer) has become one of the top global health challenges, which drew a huge international attention in the past years. This is mainly because this disease is associated with serious health risks including heart disease, stroke, kidney failure, premature death and disability.

Dr. Al-Rand reaffirmed that hypertension affects about 28-30% of adults worldwide, according to the World Health Organization, adding that the national health survey conducted by the ministry in cooperation with concerned authorities concluded that the prevalence of high blood pressure in the country has recorded 28.8%.

Reducing deaths from cardiovascular diseases

He stressed the importance of the guideline, saying it will contribute to fostering the skills of healthcare providers and providing better care for patients, thus reducing the mortality rate due to cardiovascular disease.

Launching the updated version comes in line with the national agenda, global indicators of the World Health Organization, and the national plan to combat non-communicable diseases, and will help achieve the global target of reducing the prevalence of hypertension by 25% by 2025, Dr. Al-Rand said.

Guide updated every 4 years

For her part, Dr. Buthaina bin Belaila said: The Ministry of Health updates the Hypertension Guide every 4 years to keep up with the latest international standards. We have been keen to benefit from the expertise of the international expert, Professor Krzysztof Narkiewicz, Head of hypertension and diabetology, medical university of Gdansk, Poland and a member of European ESC/ESH guideline committee, who contributed to completing the European Guidelines for the treatment of high blood pressure 2018. This is in addition the efforts of local specialists and cardiology consultants from the county’s public and private sector, as well as the Non-Communicable Diseases team at the Ministry and Servier Pharmaceuticals.

She noted that the workshop aimed to introduce the guideline and the mechanism of implementation, and to highlight modern scientific methods followed to treat high blood pressure.

The workshop also aimed to guide patients and community members and encourage people to adhere to treatment programs and maintain a healthy lifestyle by reducing the intake of saturated fat, reducing salts in foods, making regular exercises, and refrain from smoking, she added.

Bin Belaila highlighted that the ministry has opened 53 non-communicable diseases clinics across the UAE, including clinics for hypertension, in primary health care centers, and is keen to open more clinics every year to ensure the widest health coverage for patients with high blood pressure.

Source: Ministry of Health & Prevention. UAE