Hypertension

The findings are encouraging, because they indicate that, at least for older Chinese people, measuring blood pressure during household visits and encouraging those with elevated blood pressure to seek further care and adopt behavioral changes, can have substantial and long-term effects on systolic blood pressure at the population level. Community-based blood pressure screening should be integrated into routine healthcare in China. Community health workers, whose roots lie in the Chinese barefoot doctors, could systematically take on home-based screening roles—and future research should establish whether other home-based screening, such as for diabetes and dyslipidemia, could have similar health benefits as hypertension screening. My granduncle died in his 60s. A lack of awareness of the risks associated with hypertension and and prevention strategies shortened his life and lowered the quality of his life. While it is too late to save his life, it is never too late to start preventing more premature deaths like him and improving peoples’ health and wellbeing now by providing a convenient way to raise their awareness and motivate them to adopt preventative measures. As William James Mayo put it, “The aim of medicine is to prevent disease and prolong life, the ideal of medicine is to eliminate the need of a physician.” Simiao Chen is an Assistant Professor at Heidelberg Institute of Global Health, Faculty of Medicine and University Hospital, Heidelberg University.