Age Differences in Visits to Office-based Physicians by Adults with Hypertension: United States, 2013

November 17, 2016
Jill J. Ashman, Ph.D., Health Statistician

Jill J. Ashman, Ph.D., Health Statistician

Questions for Jill J. Ashman, Ph.D., Health Statistician and Lead Author on “Age Differences in Visits to Office-based Physicians by Adults With Hypertension: United States, 2013

Q: Why did you choose age differences as the demographic focus of your study?

JA: I wanted to examine this demographic because of the dramatic differences by age I was seeing in preliminary analyses. For instance, the increase by age in the percentage of adult visits to office-based physicians made by adults with hypertension is large–going from 9% of adults aged 18-44 to 58% of adults aged 75 and over.

Q: What do you think is the most significant finding in your new study?

JA: Probably, the most significant finding is that 34% of all adult visits to office-based physicians were made by adults with hypertension, representing an estimated 259 million office visits in 2013.

Q: How likely was it that medication(s) for high blood pressure were included as part of the treatment that Americans with hypertension were getting at their doctors’ offices?

JA: VERY LIKELY! Hypertensive medications were provided, prescribed, or continued at 62% of office-based physician visits made by adults with hypertension, and the percentage with hypertensive medications increased with age. Half of visits by patients aged 18-44 with hypertension included hypertensive medications whereas this percentage increased to 65% for visits by patients aged 75 and over with hypertension.

Q: Among American adults with high blood pressure, is hypertension the only condition they have when they visit their doctors’ offices?

JA: Hypertension is NOT their only health concern. Eighty-two percent of visits in 2013 that were made by adults with hypertension were made by patients who had been diagnosed with other chronic conditions. A quarter of the visits by adults with hypertension were made by patients who had been diagnosed with 4 or more chronic conditions.

Q: What is the take home message of your report?

JA: I think it’s important to note that regardless of age, adults with hypertension use extensive health resources as evidenced by frequent visits to the doctor (47% of all such visits including four or more visits to the same doctor in the past year) and that there is extensive use of hypertensive medications, with 62% of all such visits including one or more hypertensive medications.

Hypertension Prevalence and Control Among Adults: United States, 2011–2014

November 17, 2015

Hypertension is a public health challenge in the United States because it directly increases the risk for cardiovascular disease.

An NCHS report presents updated estimates for the prevalence and control of hypertension in the United States for 2011–2014.

Key Findings:

  • Prevalence of hypertension among adults was 29.0% in 2011–2014 and increased with age: 18–39, 7.3%; 40–59, 32.2%; and 60 and over, 64.9%.
  • Hypertension prevalence was higher among non-Hispanic black (41.2%) than non-Hispanic white (28.0%), non-Hispanic Asian (24.9%), or Hispanic (25.9%) adults.
  • Prevalence of controlled hypertension was 53.0%, and adults aged 18–39 were less likely to have controlled hypertension than those aged 60 and over.
  • Overall, prevalence of controlled hypertension was higher among non-Hispanic white (55.7%) than non-Hispanic black (48.5%), non-Hispanic Asian (43.5%), or Hispanic (47.4%) adults.
  • From 1999 to 2014, hypertension prevalence was unchanged, but control of hypertension increased.


High Blood Pressure Affects Almost a Third of U.S. Adults

November 1, 2013

A new report from NCHS shows that hypertension affects almost one-third of the U.S. adult population. In 2009–2010, nearly 82% of adults with hypertension were aware of their status, and nearly 76% were taking medication. Despite considerable improvement in increasing the awareness, treatment, and control of hypertension, undiagnosed and uncontrolled hypertension among minority groups remains a challenge. This report presents survey results for 2011–2012 on the prevalence, awareness, treatment, and control of hypertension.

Age-specific and age-adjusted prevalence of hypertension among adults aged 18 and over: United States, 2011–2012

Key Findings From the Report:

  • The age-adjusted prevalence of hypertension among U.S. adults aged 18 and over was 29.1% in 2011–2012, similar to the prevalence in 2009–2010.
  • The prevalence of hypertension was similar for men and women at nearly one-third. The prevalence increased with age and was highest among older adults; it was also highest among non-Hispanic black adults, at approximately 42%.
  • Among adults with hypertension, nearly 83% were aware, nearly 76% were taking medication to lower their blood pressure, and nearly 52% were controlled. There was no change in awareness, treatment, and control from 2009–2010 to 2011–2012.
  • Controlled hypertension was similar across race and Hispanic origin groups, but the percentage controlled was higher for women and older adults.

Births–Using the NCHS Vital Stats Tool

April 8, 2009


NCHS birth tables with a variety of variables for selection are available at

By selecting the national or subnational (i.e., state and some county) levels, you can find specific statistics for national, state, and some county birth rates, fertility rates, method of delivery (vaginal or cesarean), length of pregnancy, birthweight, characteristics of the mother (i.e., age, race, marital status, education), prenatal care, and risk factors (i.e., diabetes, hypertension, and smoking). For journalists who need assistance, feel free to contact the NCHS press office.

A brief look at heart disease

February 25, 2009

As a farewell to “American Heart Month,” here’s a brief synopsis of why the heart and its health affects so many of us:

  • Heart disease is the nation’s leading cause of death, responsible for 629,191 deaths in 2006 (National Vital Statistics System, 2006).
  • Heart disease is the nation’s leading diagnosis for hospitalization, at 4.2 million (National Hospital Discharge Survey, 2006).
  • Over 24 million visits to physician offices in 2006 resulted in a diagnoses of heart disease (National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey, 2006).
  • About 11% of U.S. adults have ever been told by a doctor or other health professional they had heart disease (National Health Interview Survey, 2007).
  • About one in six Americans aged 20 years and over has elevated blood pressure and one in four has hypertension (National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 2001-2004).

Report card for Nation’s health focuses on young adults aged 18-29

February 18, 2009
Young adults in the United States aged 18-29 face a number of health challenges, including increases in obesity, high injury rates, and a lack of insurance coverage compared to other adults, according to the latest report on the nation’s health from NCHS.
  • Obesity rates have tripled among young adults in the past three decades, rising from 8 percent in 1971-74 to 24 percent in 2005-06.
  • In 2006, 29 percent of young men were current cigarette smokers compared to 21 percent of young adult women.  
  • In 2005, unintentional injuries (‘‘accidents’’), homicide, and suicide accounted for 70 percent of deaths among young adults 18–29 years of age. Three-quarters of the 47,000 deaths in this age group occurred among young men. 
  • In 2006, young adults aged 20–24 were more likely to be uninsured (34 percent) than those aged 18–19 (21 percent) and those aged 25–29 (29 percent). 

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