Noncommunicable diseases are often dubbed “silent killers” because they lack symptoms — not least hypertension, which claims more than 9.4 million lives globally every year.
The prevalence of high blood pressure is now higher in low- and middle-income countries than in high-income countries. Yet many people still lack access to screening facilities and are often simply not aware their blood pressure is too high.
In Ghana, where around one in four people are estimated to suffer from hypertension, a community-based hypertension project known as ComHIP operates in a district in the eastern region of the country. Launched in October 2015 as the result of a partnership between the Novartis Foundation, FHI 360, the Ghana Health Service, VOTO Mobile and other local organizations, the project aims to increase access to screening facilities, streamline communication between health providers and empower patients to manage their own hypertension by leading healthier lifestyles.
Devex traveled to Ghana to learn how health workers and physicians are being enabled to share information, how patients are being helped to self-manage their condition, and what lessons have been learned about using digital health tools in remote areas.
Wired for Impact is an online conversation with Novartis Foundation and Devex to explore how to integrate digital health into global development in a way that is scalable and sustainable, and improves the overall quality of health care delivery to build essential connections between patients, health facilities, health providers and policymakers. Tag #Wired4Impact and @Devex to join the conversation.
Naomi Mihara is a video journalist for Devex, based in Barcelona. She has a background in journalism and international development, having previously worked as an assistant correspondent for Japan's Yomiuri Shimbun newspaper and as a communications officer for the International Organization for Migration in Southeast Asia. She holds a master's degree in multimedia journalism from Bournemouth University.
Helen Morgan is an editorial associate at Devex. She has a background in human rights, radio and journalism, and has written for a variety of international publications while living and working in Buenos Aires, New York and Shanghai. She is now based in Barcelona and supports editorial content on campaigns and media partnerships at Devex. She is currently studying a master's degree in contemporary migration.
Richard oversees editorial content for campaigns and media partnerships at Devex. Previously an associate editor, he covered the full spectrum of development aid in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, supervising a team of correspondents and writers, penning articles and conducting high-level video interviews at events across the EMEA region. Currently based in Barcelona, Richard brings to bear 12 years of experience as an editor in institutional communications, public affairs and international development. His development experience includes stints in the Dominican Republic, Argentina and Ecuador.
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