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A survey on management of hypertension by tertiary health-care physicians in Pune

Anita Anup Barde, Rinjhin Jain, Teja Deshpande, Rahul Raghunath Bhalsinge, Aakash Kewlani, Abhijit Tilak.

Background: Hypertension poses a major public health challenge in India due to high prevalence and poor control. Outpatient care provided by tertiary healthcare setup plays key role in diagnosing and controlling hypertension as patients usually approach them first for any kind of ailment. Hence, awareness of physicians in such setups regarding the diagnosis, recent developments in pharmacotherapy of hypertension and comorbidities is of utmost importance. Therefore, this survey study was planned and conducted on physicians working in an outpatient facility in a tertiary health-care setup.

Aim and Objectives: (1) Assessing the current knowledge of physicians regarding the diagnosis, investigations required and related pharmacological and therapeutic measures for dealing with hypertension as well as hypertension related comorbidities and (2) determining the necessity of familiarizing physicians with newer and advancing lines of management of hypertension.

Materials and Methods: A cross-sectional observational study was conducted for a period of 6 months among 60 physicians from department of Medicine and Obstetrics and Gynaecology who treat patients of hypertension. Questionnaire about diagnosis, investigation, target blood pressure, and treatment based on Joint National Committee 8 and Indian Guidelines on Hypertension III guidelines as well as non-pharmacological measures and continued medical education programs was provided to them. After receiving filled questionnaire, physicians were assessed for their adequacy of knowledge by calculating their scores. Physicians whose score signified adequate knowledge were divided into two groups, that is, staff (professors, associate professors, and assistant professors) and resident doctors. Results were expressed as mean ± standard deviation and statistical significance was assessed using Mann–Whitney test.

Results: Thirty-four physicians were shown to have adequate knowledge out of which 16 were staff doctors and 18 were resident doctors. Both the groups were comparable in their knowledge. All the physicians agreed to update the recent knowledge in treatments which will benefit the health of patients.

Conclusion: Most of the physicians were seen to have adequate knowledge but still there was a requirement for boosting up the knowledge among physicians.

Key words: Treatment of Hypertension; Associated Risks; Joint National Committee 8 and Indian Guidelines on Hypertension III Guidelines; Cross-Sectional Observational Study; Continued Medical Education

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