BACKGROUND: The Covid-19 pandemic caused a shutdown of healthcare systems in many countries. We explored the impact on hypertension care in the Excellence Center (EC) network of the European Society of Hypertension. METHODS: We conducted a 17-question electronic survey among ECs. RESULTS: Overall, 52 ECs from 20 European and three non-European countries participated, providing hypertension service for a median of 1500 hypertensive patients per center per year. Eighty-five percent of the ECs reported a shutdown lasting for 9 weeks (range 0-16). The number of patients treated per week decreased by 90%: from a median of 50 (range 10-400) before the pandemic to a median of 5.0 (range 0-150) during the pandemic (P < 0.0001). 60% of patients (range 0-100%) declared limited access to medical consultations. The majority of ECs (57%) could not provide 24-h ambulatory BP monitoring, whereas a median of 63% (range 0-100%) of the patients were regularly performing home BP monitoring. In the majority (75%) of the ECs, hypertension service returned to normal after the first wave of the pandemic. In 66% of the ECs, the physicians received many questions regarding the use of renin-angiotensin system (RAS) blockers. Stopping RAS-blocker therapy (in a few patients) either by patients or physicians was reported in 27 and 36.5% of the ECs. CONCLUSION: Patient care in hypertension ECs was compromised during the Covid-19-related shutdown. These data highlight the necessity to develop new strategies for hypertension care including virtual clinics to maintain services during challenging times.
The corona-virus disease 2019 pandemic compromised routine care for hypertension: a survey conducted among excellence centers of the European Society of Hypertension / Weber, Thomas; Januszewicz, Andrzej; Agabiti Rosei, Enrico; Tsioufis, Konstantinos; Okorie, Michael; S Stergiou, George; Volpe, Massimo; Kreutz, Reinhold; Abraham, Gyorgy; Azizi, Michel; Barna, Istvan; Kunz Sebba Barroso, Weimar; Brguljan, Jana; Chapman, Neil; De Backer, Tine; Dorobantu, Maria; Eckert, Siegfried; Gaciong, Zbigniew; Giannattasio, Cristina; Glover, Mark; Gottsäter, Anders; Grassos, Charalampos; Jarai, Zoltan; Jaén Águila, Fernando; Kahan, Thomas; Lopez-Sublet, Marilucy; Lovic, Dragan; Lurbe, Empar; K Makris, Thomas; Mallamaci, Francesca; J Manolis, Athanasios; Marketou, Maria; Mazza, Alberto; Diego Mediavilla, Juan; Lorenza Muiesan, Maria; Silaid Muxfeldt, Elizabeth; Nasr, Edgar; Papadakis, Ioannis; Parounak, Zelveian; Obregón, Sebastián; Okorie, Michael; Oliveras, Anna; Pontremoli, Roberto; Raev, Dimitar; Rajkumar, Chakravarthi; Redon, Josep; Roberto Roble, Nicolás; Christian Rump, Lars; Sarzani, Riccardo; Sierra, Cristina; Sirenko, Yuriy; Stojanov, Vesna; Tikkanen, Ilkka; Vaclavik, Jan; Veglio, Franco; Viigimaa, Margus; Webb, David; Zebekakis, Pantelis; Zweiker, Robert. - In: JOURNAL OF HYPERTENSION. - ISSN 0263-6352. - STAMPA. - 39:1(2021), pp. 190-195. [10.1097/HJH.0000000000002703]