QUEBEC CITY, June 10 (UPI) — Community-based programs to lower blood pressure successfully reduced cardiovascular disease in Canada, researchers say.
The community-based Cardiovascular Health Awareness Program significantly reduced both heart disease and stroke in seniors, the study found.
Researchers randomly selected 39 mid-size communities and stratified them by location and population size. Twenty communities received CHAP and the other 19 communities served as controls.
In the CHAP communities, doctors asked patients to meet at pharmacies with volunteers to check blood pressure, review the warning signs of stroke and heart attack, look at risk factors and promote blood pressure control and healthy living.
More than 15,000 residents and 500 peer volunteers took part in the program.
“Volunteer-led risk assessments combined with health information and linkages to primary care providers and community resources led to an impressive 9 percent reduction in their rates of hospitalization for stroke, heart attack, and congestive heart failure,” Dr. Janusz Kaczorowski of the University of British Columbia and the Child and Family Research Institute said in a statement.
The study was presented by Kaczorowski at the Canadian Stroke Congress in Quebec City.
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