Impact of a mass media campaign to increase public awareness of hypertension [Turk Kardiyol Dern Ars]
Turk Kardiyol Dern Ars. 2011; 39(5): 355-364 | DOI: 10.5543/tkda.2011.01570

Impact of a mass media campaign to increase public awareness of hypertension

M. Ali Oto1, Oktay Ergene2, Lale Tokgozoglu1, Zeki Ongen3, Omer Kozan4, Mahmut Sahin5, M. Kemal Erol6, Tuna Tezel7, Mehmet Ozkan8
1Department of Cardiology, Hacettepe University Faculty of Medicine, Ankara, Turkey
2Cardiology Clinic, Ataturk Training And Research Hospital, Izmir, Turkey
3Department of Cardiology, Istanbul University Cerrahpasa Faculty of Medicine, Istanbul, Turkey
4Department of Cardiology, Dokuz Eylul University Faculty of Medicine, Izmir, Turkey
5Department of Cardiology, 19 Mayis University Faculty Of Medicine, Samsun, Turkey
6Department of Cardiology, Ataturk University Faculty of Medicine, Erzurum, Turkey
7Siyami Ersek Center of Chest, Heart And Vascular Surgery, Istanbul, Turkey
8Cardiology Clinic, Kosuyolu Heart Training And Research Hospital, Istanbul, Turkey


OBJECTIVES
We evaluated the effect of a nationwide media campaign on hypertension awareness in the population, which was implemented with the aim of spreading key messages related to optimal blood pressure levels and encouraging blood pressure measurements.

STUDY DESIGN
A nationwide project called “12/8 Awareness Campaign” was implemented between October 2005 and January 2006 using all available mass and outdoor media aiming to improve the knowledge of people on normal blood pressure values and to encourage regular blood pressure measurements. Four survey questions to inquire the level of awareness related to optimal blood pressure levels, hypertension, and hypertension-related disease conditions were directed via face-to-face interviews to two separate samples representing the general Turkish population before (n=1716) and after (n=1725) the campaign, respectively. The answers of the pre- and post-campaign individuals were compared.

RESULTS
After the campaign, the percentage of participants who did not know their blood pressure levels decreased from 54.8% to 47.8%, the percentage of those who checked their blood pressure within the past two months increased from 34.3% to 39.6%, and the percentage of those who were aware of the optimal blood pressure levels rose from 51.8% to 58.6% (p<0.001).

CONCLUSION
The campaign contributed significantly to the awareness of hypertension in general population, which is highly encouraging for future efforts for early detection of hypertension and prevention of related morbidity and mortality.

Keywords: Awareness, blood pressure, health knowledge, hypertension/epidemiology/prevention & control; questionnaires; Turkey/epidemiology

How to cite this article
M. Ali Oto, Oktay Ergene, Lale Tokgozoglu, Zeki Ongen, Omer Kozan, Mahmut Sahin, M. Kemal Erol, Tuna Tezel, Mehmet Ozkan. Impact of a mass media campaign to increase public awareness of hypertension. Turk Kardiyol Dern Ars. 2011; 39(5): 355-364

Corresponding Author: M. Ali Oto, Türkiye
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