Campaign Launched Against ‘Silent Killer’

More than 35 744 new patients aged 18 and older with high blood pressure were admitted at state facilities between 2011 and 2012 . Khomas Region recorded the highest number of admissions with 10 004 cases (about 28 percent) during the two years.

The number does not include patients at private facilities. Of the figure, 50 percent were not aware of their condition also known as ‘the silent killer’

This was disclosed by the Minister of Health and Social Services, Dr Richard Kamwi, yesterday in his keynote address delivered on his behalf by the Deputy Permanent Secretary, Dr Norbert Forster, at the launch of World Hypertension Day and the Five-Year Strategic Activity Plan on Cardiovascular Disease. The aim is to reduce death from heart attacks, stroke and heart disease under this year’s theme “Know your Blood Pressure (BP)”.

“This is a clear indication that people living in the City of Windhoek need to seriously strive to improve their life style as a matter of urgency,” warned the minister.

Additionally in the two years, 2 691 females were admitted to government health institutions compared to 1 470 males due to high blood pressure. During the same period, 263 deaths were recorded to have been caused by the disease.

“Life is associated with challenges, therefore my aice is that we must be resilient and handle issues in a positive manner, to prevent high blood pressure and its consequences,” aised the minister.

He said should people encounter any stress factors that seem unbearable, they should be courageous enough to seek professional help.

The ministry in collaboration with other stakeholders has planned to conduct free blood pressure screening from June 02-30 June.

Kamwi urged the private sector to participate in the campaign.

He also requested all ministers, permanent secretaries and those in charge of government officesagencies to allow their employees to have their blood pressure checked.

According to statistics, 3 out of ten people suffer from hypertension worldwide. Approximately 1.8 billion people globally suffer from hypertension and 50 per cent are totally unaware of their condition, while some who are aware of their condition do not take any medical action for their blood pressure.

Source : New Era