The Association of Black Cardiologists (ABC) launched a new program that offers clinicians a chance to receive additional training in high blood pressure, or hypertension, care, according to an ABC news release.

Hypertension is the leading risk for cardiovascular disease and affects about 55% of Black adults, according to the American Heart Association.

ABC’s Hypertension Control Program aims to address hypertension disparities by offering 50 member clinicians an opportunity to receive American Hypertension Specialist Training. The program seeks to improve care management for Black patients who live with or are at risk for hypertension. The program emphasizes the need for increased trust, communication and adherence to medical advice.

Hypertension is sometimes called a “silent killer" and affects 1 in 3 adults worldwide, according to the World Health Organization. This common, deadly condition can lead to stroke, heart attack, heart failure, kidney damage and many other health problems.

Black patients are often diagnosed with hypertension earlier in life and experience greater morbidity and mortality related to hypertension, according to the news release. What’s more, most people with high blood pressure don’t have any symptoms, such as sweating or headaches. Because many people feel fine, they don’t think they need to get their blood pressure checked.

The number of people living with hypertension (blood pressure of 140/90 mmHg or higher or taking medication for hypertension) doubled between 1990 and 2019, from 650 million to 1.3 billion. What’s more, nearly half of people with hypertension globally are currently unaware of their condition and more than three-quarters of adults with hypertension live in low- and middle-income countries.  

“Hypertension is a significant driver of our community’s health disparities,” Anekwe Onwuanyi, MD, President of ABC, said in the ABC news release. “The Hypertension Control Program aims to improve hypertension health in the Black community by targeting clinicians who are uniquely positioned to make an impact.”

To learn more about the program, click here.

To read more, click #Hypertension. There, you’ll find headlines such as “First WHO Report Details Devastating Impact of Hypertension and Ways to Stop It,” “$21M Grant to Reduce Hypertension During Pregnancy” and “High Blood Pressure Common in Black Women of Childbearing Age.”