Minister for Health and Population Welfare, Dr Azra Pechuho stated that Lady Health Workers in the province have been trained in screening hypertension, blood pressure and this training is not driven by NGOs. For AKUHs project there are currently 4 doctors and 10 health monitors assigned for hypertension management.
The Tele-tabeeb project (telehealth) will have an app where the data of the patient, advice given etc will be recorded alongside a unique identifier for the patient that is double-binded. Dr Azra Pechuho said that the Sindh Health Department can send nurses and community health workers that were previously engaged in COVID management, and since they are already trained in covid SOPs they can add this to their training too.
The Provincial Health Minister inquired whether the patients information such as their discharge summary / information pamphlet will be part of the project so that the patient aftercare is made accessible to them and they can understand which health professional and facility to connect with and the reasons they are doing it.
The meeting was informed that there is around 4 to 5 % chance of mortality in patients with hypertension after they have been discharged because of the lack of information available on how to manage the illness at home. The project will include a brochure with information in simple English and Urdu, with pictorial explainers to rectify this gap in instructions.
The project aims to treat 3000 patients in a year and have 24/7 coverage. If 9 patients a day are being treated through the project, then in a years time 3000 patients can be treated.
Minister Health, Sindh, also advised that all the health facilities that are working on hypertension management should come together to form a cohort and prepare an advisory board to inform the level of care that will be executed through the project.
Minister Dr Azra Pechuho added lastly that stroke management is an integral part of hypertension treatment and the training and telehealth project must include the guidelines, identifiers and referral health facilities that can treat hypertension complications and emergencies.