Storytelling Improves Blood Pressure
Culturally appropriate storytelling may help control blood pressure in African-Americans with hypertension, according to an article published in the January 18 Issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.
Researchers at Cooper Green Mercy Hospital and the University of Alabama at Birmingham asked a group of African-American patients with hypertension to watch videos featuring first-person accounts and advice from local patients with hypertension. They also watched instructional material about making lifestyle changes to improve health. The study found that watching the videos resulted in behavior changes that led to a 6mmHg reduction in systolic blood pressure for those with uncontrolled hypertension over the control group. Research shows that reducing systolic blood pressure by two to three mmHg may save thousands of lives in the United States each year.
Funding for the study was provided by Finding Answers: Disparities Research for Change, a national program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation based at the University of Chicago, which evaluates the impact of interventions aimed at closing racial and ethnic gaps in care.
Watch and Listen
New Research & Recommendations
This report (PDF 3.8MB) offers guidance for community organizations and those who fund social change in how best to harness the power of local media-making for community health improvement. Spanish-language version is now available. Una versión en español de este informe esta en la web.