Hypertension in the Haitian Population
Hypertensionin the Haitian Population
Hypertensionin the Haitian Population
Differentstudies have been conducted on the Haitian population after the 2010catastrophic earthquake. Among the conditions known to affect most ofthe Haitians from recent findings is the occurrence of hypertension,which is believed to be a major health issue among the Haitians intheir native nation and in the United States where some are acceptedas immigrants. In 2012, the prevalence of hypertension was higherthan that of other health conditions such as HIV/AIDS and wasapproaching 45% (Sanon, Mohammed, and McCullagh, 2014). The nation ishighly characterized by poverty and the inadequacy of proper healthfacilities and intervention knowledge for health concerns such as theprevalence of hypertension. In 2012 for example, the budgetallocation for health expenditure was 7.9 percent of the nation’sGNP (Kenerson, 2014). Even with the existence of other healthconditions, hypertension still presents itself as a serious problemand creates a need for the development of intervention strategiessuch as monitoring the dietary intake of the people and offeringhealth education on the prevention and management of the condition.
ThePrevalence and Pattern of Hypertension among the Haitians
Haitiansare significantly affected by the occurrence of anonymous deaths thatare characterized by non-existent or insufficient treatment. Most ofthe individuals in the nation are known to live in poverty and are atmost times unable to care for the basic needs such as ensuring thatthey get proper health. The global prevalence of hypertension isprojected to grow to 29.2% by the year 2025 (Jean-Charles, 2014). Theglobal statistics also indicate that the distribution of hypertensioncases in the developing nations is 639 million (Kenerson, 2014). Thisis much higher than that of the developed world hence an indicator ofthe role that poverty plays in the increase of incidences ofhypertension. 5.4% of the deaths in Haiti are contributed byhypertension and conditions related to it. The conditions ofhypertension have been responsible for cardiac conditions and otherhealth-related issues such as stroke.
Evenwith the high prevalence rates, very few Haitians have access tobetter healthcare and proper management of the condition. Onlytwenty-six percent of the people who were diagnosed hypertensiongained the ability to control the disease (Sanon, Mohammed, andMcCullagh, 2014). Among the Haitian immigrants, women were found tobe more likely to get chronic hypertension and giving birth to lowbirth weight infants.
PerceivedFactors that Contribute to the Increase in Prevalence of Hypertensionin Haiti
Theconditions in Haiti are challenging. Individuals are oftenpredisposed to different health conditions and lack the ability toaccess proper health. Stroke is one of the conditions that is morelikely to dispose Haitians to hypertension (Kenerson, 2014). Thedisease is perceived as one of the top global roots of disability andthe second most contributor of deaths in low and mid-income countries(Sanon, Mohammed, and McCullagh, 2014). Haiti has been indicated asthe nation with the highest prevalence of stroke in the Caribbean andLatin America. This form of disability has also been named as one ofthe perceived contributing factors of hypertension in the nation(Sanon, Mohammed, and McCullagh, 2014). Different studies associatethe high number of cases of stroke in the country with the increasingprevalence of hypertension.
Theincreased intake of salt is also associated with the rates ofhypertension in Haiti. Sodium has been supposed as a possibleconductor of the hypertension symphony since it is the primary cationin the extracellular region. Individuals of the African ancestry areperceived to be having a high incidence of sodium-sensitivehypertension (Kenerson, 2014). Haiti has a developed salt-intakeculture even though salt is thought to have direct toxic effects onthe heart, renal structure, and vascular integrity (Kenerson, 2014).Some other health effects such as gastric cancer and asthma, broughtabout by high intake of salt are also evident in the Haitipopulation, hence an indicator of the association of the occurrenceof hypertension in the population with the established salt culturein the nation.
Povertyis the social factor that is largely associated with poor healthconditions of the people in the Caribbean countries as provided byJean-Charles (2014). The increasing prevalence rate of hypertensionis thought to be contributed to the financial insecurity of thepeople. 56% of the population of the Haitians live in extreme povertywhereas 75% live on less than $2 per day (Kenerson, 2014). Suchstatistics are substantially linked to the presence of difficultiessuch as the inability to access health services that can offerprevention guidelines for hypertension.
Proposalfor Health Promotion and Management
Interventionstrategies can be developed to ensure that the lives of individualswith hypertension attain better health even with the presence oftheir condition. One such intervention method is the implementationof proper diet programs for the communities. Such will ensure thatthe population reduces its intake of salt thus decreasing theprevalence of hypertension and that of other conditions associatedwith it as suggested by Kenerson (2014). The introduction of properdietary programs will also ensure that individuals with hypertensioncan manage their condition and reduce the chances of fatalities.
Educationis also another health promotion program. Provision of knowledge tothe population on the causes of hypertension and the preventivestrategies can be beneficial in reducing the development of new casesof the condition (Sanon, Mohammed, and McCullagh, 2014). There isalso need to improve the economic condition of the people byempowering them to generate their income to sustain themselvesregarding health and other basic needs.
Theprevalence of hypertension in the Haiti has been on the rise throughthe years. The prevalence is highly associated with the salt intakeculture, poverty, and the occurrence of other conditions such asstroke. Health promotion strategies can be implemented to reduce theprevalence of hypertension in the population and help the victims ofthe condition to implement proper management plans. There is a needfor the population to check on its dietary intake of salt, and fordifferent bodies to offer them with education on intervention andmanagement methods of the condition.
Jean-Charles,R. R. (2014, February). Challenges in Hypertension: The HaitiExperience. Retrieved April 02, 2017, fromhttps://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4237537/
Kenerson,J. (2014). Hypertension in Haiti: The Challenge of Best PossiblePractice. Journalof Clinical Hypertension,16(2),107-114. doi:10.1111/jch.12242
Sanon,M., Mohammed, S. A., & McCullagh, M. C. (2014). Definition andManagement of Hypertension Among Haitian Immigrants: A QualitativeStudy. Retrieved April 02, 2017, fromhttps://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4137480/
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