JGH shines in the international spotlight
Globally, 7 million people die every year and 1.5 billion people suffer because of high blood pressure, making hypertension a major public health issue. It is a major contributor to heart disease, stroke, kidney disease and diabetes, which is why the Jewish General Hospital (JGH) is supporting World Hypertension Day (May 17) by making valuable information available to the public about the importance of lowering one’s blood pressure.
Named the “number one killer” by the World Health Organization, a person living with hypertension is twice as likely to have a heart attack, and four times more likely to suffer a stroke. Lifestyle factors, such as physical inactivity, a diet high in sodium, processed and fatty foods, as well as alcohol and tobacco consumption are all contributors for this increased disease burden.
”There are many simple and effective measures that people can take to help reduce their blood pressure, thus helping avoid heart attack or stroke,” says Dr. Ernesto Schiffrin, JGH Physician-in-Chief and the Canada Research Chair in Hypertension and Vascular Research at the Lady Davis Institute at the JGH. “By losing excess weight, reducing their sodium intake, reducing stress, exercising regularly and being sensible about their alcohol consumption, people can reduce their risk of cardiovascular disease caused by hypertension.”
In relation to his many efforts to raise awareness about hypertension, Dr. Schiffrin is beginning a two-year term as President of the International Society of Hypertension, the field’s leading body. Dr. Schiffrin is an internationally recognized authority, and one of the editors of Hypertension, journal of the American Heart Association and the premier scientific journal in the field. He also represents the Society in leading the development of activities in Latin America to improve the prevention of hypertension and the transfer of knowledge about hypertension and cardiovascular disease.
“These international connections that the JGH makes have a major impact on the health of our patients,” explains Dr. Schiffrin. “I see the latest science coming out every day, and it really enables me, and other JGH professionals, to be among the earliest to know about the most recent medical advances.”
“The appointment is an honour for Dr. Schiffrin and the JGH, but it goes farther than that,” says Dr. Hartley Stern, JGH Executive Director. “We need to understand what the rest of the world is doing in order to be better able to fulfill the needs of patients – our own, as well as those across Quebec – who benefit from our participation in the province-wide team of hospitals and healthcare agencies.”
Glenn J. Nashen, Director
Astrid Morin, Media Relations
Public Affairs and Communications
Jewish General Hospital
Tel.: 514-340-8222 ext. 4612