Hypertension, or high blood pressure, is one of the most common and potentially dangerous conditions affecting Americans. Nearly 1 in 3 US adults – roughly 75 million people – have high blood pressure. High blood pressure increases the risk for heart disease and stroke, two of the leading causes of death in the US, as well as further complicating other serious chronic conditions, such as diabetes. While hypertension can lead to serious, potentially deadly, side effects, people typically do not have any symptoms or warning signs – leading to high blood pressure being called a “silent killer”.
The good news is that hypertension can be prevented and controlled. Often one of the first and most impactful steps is to identify patients who are at risk for or who have high blood pressure, whether or not they have previously received a diagnosis for hypertension. Actions such as implementation of hypertension protocols, using patient registries to identify and track patients, and use of patient care plans to support self-management and medication adherence are key interventions to support patients to control their blood pressure and lower their risks for heart attack and stroke.
Best Practice Guide
Hypertension Control: Action Steps for Clinicians (PDF) - Million Hearts®, Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
A simple and concise action guide outlining key strategies to be undertaken by clinicians for hypertension control, offering evidence-based support for each recommendation.
Hypertension Control: Change Package for Clinicians (PDF) - Million Hearts®, HHS, CDC
A more detailed guide offering a listing of process improvements that ambulatory clinical settings can implement as they seek optimal blood pressure control among patients. Highlights real life examples from successful clinics, including protocols, patient self-management, use of patient registries, etc.
Elements Associated with Effective Adoption and Use of a Protocol (PDF) - Million Hearts®, HHS, CDC
A quick reference guide for simple, evidence-based treatment protocols, identifying key components to accelerate adoption and effective use. Document is a compilation of insight and comments gained from Million Hearts Champion clinicians, practices, and stakeholders.