What’s New in Cardiovascular Disease Prevention and Control?

A nurse shows a male patient the readout of a digital blood pressure monitorTwo Task Force recommendations and new publications about cardiovascular disease prevention and control are now available! Read below to find out more.

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Task Force Releases Two Recommendations on Self-Measured Blood Pressure Monitoring Interventions for Improved Blood Pressure Control

Did you know that the use of personal blood pressure measurement devices can help people manage their high blood pressure? The Community Preventive Services Task Force (Task Force) recently recommended the following interventions to help improve blood pressure control:

Researchers examined evidence from 52 studies from an existing systematic review published in 2013 (Uhlig et al., 2013) and found that self-measured blood pressure (SMBP) monitoring when used alone led to improvements in blood pressure outcomes at six months. When these interventions were combined with additional support, improvements in blood pressure were sustained at 12 months.

What is self-measured blood pressure monitoring?

SMBP monitoring involves training patients to use validated, and usually automated, blood pressure measurement devices on a regular basis in familiar settings, typically their homes. Patients share their blood pressure readings with their healthcare provider during medical visits, by telephone, or electronically. These measurements are monitored and used in treatment decisions to improve blood pressure control.

What types of additional support can be used with self-measured blood pressure monitoring?

Self-measured blood pressure monitoring interventions may be combined with the following:

  • One-on-one patient counseling on medications and health behavior changes (e.g., diet and exercise)
  • Educational sessions on high blood pressure and blood pressure self-management
  • Access to electronic or web-based tools (e.g., electronic requests for medication refills, text or email reminders to measure blood pressure or attend appointments, direct communications with healthcare providers via secure messaging)

Additional support is often delivered using a team-based care arrangement.

New Publications About Interventions to Prevent Cardiovascular Disease

New publications about the following systematic reviews and Task Force recommendations are now available online.

Clinical Decision Support Systems to Improve Provider Practices:

Team-Based Care to Improve Blood Pressure Control

Two commentaries that accompany these manuscripts are also available online.

Why are these Task Force Recommendations Important?

  • About 70 million American adults (29%) or 1 in every 3 adults have high blood pressure and only about half (52%) have their condition under control (Nwankwo 2013).
  • High blood pressure was a primary or contributing cause of death for more than 360,000 Americans in 2013 (Nwankwo 2013).
  • High blood pressure costs the nation $46 billion each year. This total includes the cost of health care services, medications to treat high blood pressure, and missed days of work (CDC, NCHS, 2015).
  • Having high blood pressure puts you at risk for heart disease and stroke, which are leading causes of death in the United States (CDC, NCHS, 2015).

What are the Task Force, Community Guide, and Liaisons?

  • The Community Preventive Services Task Force (Task Force) is an independent, nonfederal, unpaid panel of public health and prevention experts. The Task Force works to improve the health of all Americans by providing evidence-based recommendations about community preventive programs, services, and policies to improve health. Its members represent a broad range of research, practice, and policy expertise in community prevention services, public health, health promotion, and disease prevention.
  • The Guide to Community Preventive Services (The Community Guide) is an essential web resource for people who want to know what works in public health. It provides evidence-based findings about public health interventions and policies to improve health and promote safety.
  • Liaisons to the Task Force Many of the nation’s leading health practice and research agencies and organizations hold official Liaison status with the Community Preventive Services Task Force (Task Force). They participate in Task Force meetings; serve on systematic review teams; represent the views, concerns, and needs of their organizations and constituents; and disseminate findings to their members and constituents.


CDC, NCHS. Underlying Cause of Death 1999-2013 on CDC WONDER Online Database, released 2015. Data are from Multiple Causes of Death Files, 1999-2013, as compiled from data provided by the 57 vital statistics jurisdictions through the Vital Statistics Cooperative Program.

Nwankwo T, Yoon SS, Burt V, Gu Q. Hypertension among adults in the US: National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 2011-2012. NCHS Data Brief, No. 133. Hyattsville, MD: National Center for Health Statistics, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, US Dept of Health and Human Services; 2013.

Uhlig K, Patel K, Ip S, et al. Self-measured blood pressure monitoring in the management of hypertension. Annals of Internal Medicine 2013, 159(3):185-94.

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