Hypertension affects approximately 31.1% of adults (1.39 million) worldwide. It continues to be a significant risk factor for cardiovascular disease and strokes, the leading causes of death in the United States (Mills, Stefanescu, & He, 2020). Hypertension is expected to increase due to the aging population and unhealthy lifestyle choices of the American people (American Heart Association [AHA], 2018a). Therefore, effective strategies are required to manage hypertension in order to decrease stroke and cardiovascular events that can save the lives of many Americans. National programs such as Healthy People 2020 are working to achieve blood pressure control within the United States population, but overall blood pressure measurements continue to be above normal ranges (Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion [ODPHP], 2019). The purpose of this pilot project was to determine if participation in a faith-based health education on hypertension management would improve health behaviors and blood pressure measurements to assist in combating this problem. In the four-week faith-based health intervention, there were no significant differences found in the H-SCALE subscale total scores that were measured before and after the intervention. Slight improvements/declines were discovered in various individual questions in the diet and weight management subscales, but not enough to make a significant impact on the H-SCALE subscale total scores. Systolic and diastolic blood pressure measurements were slightly reduced in four out of six participants, but no significant differences were found. However, this faith-based health education provided a safe and trusting environment where relationships were developed and participants shared their struggles in managing their health. Significant differences in health behaviors and blood pressure measurements may become evident in future studies implemented over a longer period of time with larger sample sizes, but further research is needed.
White, Michelle, "Reducing Hypertension through Faith Community Nursing" (2020). DNP Research Projects. 27.