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Primary prevention and screening: routine monitoring

Hypertension is one of the main preventable causes of premature mortality and morbidity, and approximately a quarter of adults suffer with raised blood pressure. It is a major risk factor for heart disease, stroke, cognitive decline, renal disease and with every 2mmHg rise in mercury of systolic blood pressure there is a 7% rise in risk of heart disease and 10% rise in risk of stroke. The measurement of blood pressure is a test performed regularly in primary care but not always accurately. New guidance by NICE has made changes to how we diagnose and treat people with hypertension.1

This resource, consisting of five assessment questions at basic level, tests your knowledge of the importance of preventing and monitoring identified hypertension based on the current NICE guideline. Complete the resource, including reading the featured articles and undertaking some or all of the suggested activities, to obtain a certificate for one hour of continuing professional development to include in your annual portfolio. 

Aims and objectives

On completion of this resource you should have an understanding of:

  • The relevance of lifestyle in the prevention of hypertension
  • Obtaining a diagnosis of hypertension
  • The correct technique for accurate measurement of blood pressure
  • The classification of different types of hypertension and causes of hypertension
  • The significance of cardiovascular risk and assessing target organ damage in hypertension


1. NICE. Hypertension. Clinical management of primary hypertension in adults CG 127 (2011).

Recommended reading

NHS Choices. Diagnosing high blood pressure (2012)

British Hypertension Society guidelines

SIGN. Risk estimation and the prevention of cardiovascular disease Guideline 97

Williams B, Poulter NR, Brown MJ, et al. Guidelines for management of hypertension: report of the fourth working party of the British Hypertension Society, J Hum Hypertens 2004 BHS IV. 2004;18: 139-85

Date of preparation: January 2014

Review date: January 2015