PATH Ghana is an international organisation that drives transformative innovation to save lives and improve health, especially among women and children. It is an implementing partner of the Healthy Heart Africa Programme, which is supporting the GHS to establish wellness clinics in its facilities to encourage regular checks among the population.
Funded by AstraZeneca, the Healthy Heart Africa Programme seeks to tackle hypertension and the increased burden of cardiovascular diseases across Africa. Dr Robert Yeboah, the Senior Technical Advisor, Non-Communicable Diseases of PATH Ghana, announced this at the launch of the World Hypertension Day in Kumasi. He said cardiovascular diseases, including hypertension, accounted for approximately 17.9 million non-communicable disease deaths worldwide, annually.
He said the Day offered an opportunity to raise awareness of the dangers of elevated blood pressure and accelerate efforts at prevention, screening, early diagnosis and appropriate treatment for hypertension.
Dr Emmanuel Tinkorang, the Regional Director of Health Services, said hypertension was one of the major public health problems that required sustained awareness creation. He said hypertension was hitherto prevalent among the aged but the trend was changing as young adults of 25 to 30 years were being diagnosed with hypertension.
“Currently, the incidence of hypertension among young adults is becoming increasingly worrying because now we are seeing hypertension in 25 years and 30 years,” he said.
He said the awareness of hypertension in Ghana was very low with only 37 per cent of women and 14 per cent of men aware of their high blood pressure status and called for regular health check-ups to avert needless deaths.
A total of 106,626 cases of hypertension were recorded in the Ashanti Region in 2020, Dr Tinkorang said, being one of the highest in the country.
He said the Day was an opportunity to step up advocacy and public education and reaffirmed the GHS’ commitment to reducing non-communicable diseases in the Region.
The 2021 World Hypertension Day is being celebrated on the theme: “Measure Your Blood Pressure Accurately, Control It, Live Longer”.