Hypertension leads to an estimated 91,000 deaths per year in Vietnam, representing 21% of the overall mortality.1 About 25% of adults have high blood pressure, but fewer than half are aware of their condition, and only 13% have access to effective treatment.2
The Ho Chi Minh City Communities for Healthy Hearts program was the Novartis Foundation’s second community-based incubator model for hypertension management, following on from ComHIP in Ghana. The program was designed to improve healthcare provision for adults living with hypertension in four districts and 16 wards within Ho Chi Minh City.
Launched in May 2016, the program engaged partners across multiple sectors including government, social enterprise, public and private health sectors, community and academia – forming new partnerships to explore innovative solutions for improving access to hypertension screening, diagnosis and treatment, particularly for people living in low-income urban households. These new partnerships brought hypertension care closer to where people live, work and shop. For example by offering screening in local markets and hair salons. It covered a population of about two million people.
The program’s digital e-Hypertension Tracker created an online searchable database to log data of hypertension service delivery, including blood pressure checks, diagnosis, treatment, and ongoing risk factors, enabling primary health care workers to better enable their clients to care for their health.
Partners included PATH and the Ho Chi Minh City Provincial Health Department. The Hanoi School of Public Health evaluated the program’s effectiveness and impact with support from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine.
The program evaluation found increased awareness of hypertension in low-income communities and improved rates of blood pressure self-management, which is a critical step towards Vietnam’s national target of less than 30% of its adult population living with hypertension by 2025. As a result of the program’s success strengthening the primary care system in Ho Chi Minh City, Access Accelerated is working with PATH to scale up the model nation-wide in Vietnam as part of their Communities for Healthy Vietnam program. You can learn more about the program’s results in the publications below.
- Read: Effect of community-based intervention on self-management of blood pressure among hypertensive adults: findings from the Communities for Healthy Hearts Quasi-experimental Study in Vietnam, Journal of Global Health Science, 2020
- Read: Knowledge change related to hypertension in the Southern province of Vietnam: a community based, before and after intervention evaluation, Journal of Global Health Science, 2020
- Read: Facilitating factors and barriers to the implementation of hypertension prevention programs in Vietnam: lessons learned from the Communities for Healthy Hearts program, Journal of Global Health Science, 2020
- Read: Strengthening local health systems for hypertension prevention and control: the Communities for Healthy Hearts program in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, Journal of Global Health Science, 2020
1 Son PT, Quang N, Viet NL, et al. “Prevalence, awareness, treatment and control of hypertension in Vietnam – results from a national survey.” Journal of Human Hypertension. 2012;26(4):268–280
2 Vietnam Ministry of Health (MOH). National Survey on the Risk Factors of Non-communicable Diseases (STEPS). Hanoi, Vietnam: MOH; 2016