WASHINGTON, May 19, 2017 – Using a new social media platform called Thunderclap, members of the National Forum for Heart Disease & Stroke Prevention and the World Hypertension League worked together to celebrate World Hypertension Day by reminding more than 1.1 million people to check their blood pressure.
High blood pressure is the #1 cause of stroke and heart failure and the #2 cause of heart attacks, but there are NO symptoms for having high blood pressure. That’s why high blood pressure is called a “silent killer.”
The National Forum and World Hypertension League want to change that. For the first year ever, members of the two health organizations teamed up in a unique collaboration to celebrate World Hypertension Day on May 17 by reminding the public, clinicians and public health practitioners about the importance of blood pressure control.
Using Thunderclap, the world’s first crowdspeaking platform, the groups leveraged social media networks such as Facebook and Twitter to spread their message. At 12 p.m. on May 17, the following social media message went out simultaneously across a multitude of user accounts, reaching 1,116,671 people, which surpassed the groups’ goal to reach one million people.
“4 in 10 adults have high blood pressure, a major cause of heart disease and stroke. #KnowYourNumbers http://thndr.me/02uua1”
Spreading the word about need for people to check their blood pressure also supports the mission of Million Hearts® 202 to reduce by 1 million the number of people in the next five years who experience strokes, heart attacks or other cardiovascular events.
More than 75 million Americans are living with high blood pressure yet only about half have it under control. That’s why Million Hearts® has called upon health organizations and practitioners to work together to increase the percentage of people with high blood pressure who have it under control.
Also on World Hypertension Day, the National Forum hosted more than 170 members and stakeholders at the group’s mid-year virtual meeting, during which members shared successful programs and practices to improve hypertension control.
The keynote speaker, Mary McIntyre, MD, MPH, chief medical officer of the Alabama Department of Public Health, spoke about, “Finding Patients Hiding in Plain Sight.” Other speakers included Amy Ciarochi (American Heart Association); Judy Hannan (RN, MPH, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention); Debra Simmons (MS, RN, Consortium for Southeastern Hypertension Control); and Dan Lackland (DrPH, World Hypertension League).