High Blood Pressure Higher in Blacks, Poor

ROCKVILLE, Md., July 5 (UPI) — U.S. health officials report higher blood pressure hospitalization rates for African-Americans and Hispanics than for whites.

A report by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, part of the Department of Health and Human Services, finds the hospital admission rate of 161 per 100,000 people in 2006 was nearly five times the rate for whites.

The poorest Americans were 2.5 times more likely to be admitted for high blood pressure than the wealthiest — 83 per 100,000 vs. 32 admissions per 100,000 — the report says. Hypertension with complications account for about 250,000 hospitalizations each year.

Other findings include:

– The admission rate for Hispanics with high blood pressure was 61 per 100,000 people, or nearly twice that of whites.

– Asians and Pacific Islanders had the lowest admission rate for high blood pressure — 26 per 100,000. For whites, it was 33 admissions per 100,000.

– Women were admitted for high blood pressure more often than men.

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