$20 million research initiative supports health equity in high blood pressure prevention

American Heart Association

The American Heart Association, the world’s leading voluntary organization dedicated to a world of longer, healthier lives, is investing $20 million to study ways to prevent high blood pressure, particularly in underrepresented populations. Applications are now being accepted for coordinated submission of three to five research centers and a coordinating center that will be funded through this fast-track initiative. Letters of intent are required and due by Friday, April 23, 2021.

The Health Equity Research Network (HERN) on the Prevention of Hypertension is part of the multi-pronged approach of the American Heart Association’s unprecedented pledge to aggressively address social determinants while working to support and improve the equitable health of all communities.

High blood pressure is one of the leading risk factors of heart disease and stroke and is also a health equity issue. Significant racial and ethnic disparities in both prevalence of hypertension and its management have been well documented. Uncontrolled hypertension is particularly acute in communities of color. As such, this research initiative provides a mechanism to advance the science of prevention of hypertension with a focus on health equity.

According to the American Heart Association Heart Disease and Stroke Statistics – 2021 Update:

  • Nearly half of all U.S. adults (47.3%, 121.5 million people age 20 or older) have high blood pressure.
  • The prevalence of hypertension in Black people in the U.S. is among the highest in the world – 56.6% among males and 55.3% among females.
  • Black adults are more likely (33.0%) to have been told on two or more occasions that they had hypertension than American Indian/Alaska Native adults (26.4%), white adults (23.5%), Hispanic or Latino adults (22.9%) or Asian adults (19.5%).
  • The lifetime risk for high blood pressure is 86.1% for Black males, 85.7% for Black females, 83.8% for white males and 69.3% for white females.

Scientific research teams interested in applying for the new grants can get more information here.

About the American Heart Association

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