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India Hypertension Control Initiative

Context:

A project called the India Hypertension Control Initiative (IHCI) finds that nearly 23% out of 2.1 million Indians have uncontrolled blood pressure.

Relevance:

GS II- Health

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. What is Hypertension?
  2. What is the IHCI?
  3. How prevalent is the problem of hypertension?

What is Hypertension?

  • Hypertension is defined as having systolic blood pressure level greater than or equal to 140 mmHg or diastolic blood pressure level greater than or equal to 90 mmHg or/and taking anti-hypertensive medication to lower his/her blood pressure.
  • India has committed to a “25 by 25” goal, which aims to reduce premature mortality due to non-communicable diseases (NCDs) by 25% by 2025.
    • One of the nine voluntary targets includes reducing the prevalence of high blood pressure by 25% by 2025.

What is the IHCI?

  • Recognising that hypertension is a serious, and growing, health issue in India, the Health Ministry, the Indian Council of Medical Research, State Governments, and WHO-India began a five-year initiative to monitor and treat hypertension.
  • The programme was launched in November 2017.
  • In the first year, IHCI covered 26 districts across five States — Punjab, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Telangana, and Maharashtra.
  • By December 2020, IHCI was expanded to 52 districts across ten States — Andhra Pradesh (1), Chhattisgarh (2), Karnataka (2), Kerala (4), Madhya Pradesh (6), Maharashtra (13), Punjab (5), Tamil Nadu (1), Telangana (13) and West Bengal (5).

How many have been enrolled in the programme?

  • As of December 2021, 101 districts across 19 States had commenced project activities.
  • The project districts enrolled almost 21 lakh patients across 13,821 health facilities.
  • In the 26 initial districts, one fifth of the expected patients were enrolled.
  • State wise proportions were Maharashtra (27%), Kerala (22.6%), Madhya Pradesh (18.7%), Telangana (18.6%) and Punjab (14.2%).
  • Managing blood pressure for 2.5 crore individuals can prevent up to five lakh deaths due to cardiovascular disease in the next 10 years.

What has the IHCI found so far?

  • Its most important discovery so far is that nearly one-fourth of(23%) patients under the programme had uncontrolled blood pressure, and 27% did not return for a follow-up in the first quarter of 2021.
  • There were an estimated 20 crore adults with hypertension in the country.
  • To achieve India’s target of a 25% relative reduction in the prevalence of raised blood pressure, approximately 4.5 crore additional people with hypertension need to get their blood pressure under control by 2025.

How prevalent is the problem of hypertension?

  • Southern States have a higher prevalence of hypertension than the national average, according to the latest edition of the National Family Health Survey.
  • While 21.3% of women and 24% of men aged above 15 have hypertension in the country, the prevalence is the highest in Kerala where 32.8% men and 30.9% women have been diagnosed with hypertension.
  • Kerala is followed by Telangana where the prevalence is 31.4% in men and 26.1% in women.
  • About one-fourth of women and men aged 40 to 49 years have hypertension.
  • Even at an earlier age, one in eight women and more than one in five men aged 30 to 39 years have hypertension.
  • The prevalence of hypertension is higher among Sikhs (37% for men and 31% for women), Jains (30% for men and 25% for women), and Christians (29% for men and 26% for women) than the rest.

-Source: The Hindu

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November 2022
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