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It’s World Hypertension Day today. Watch medical students from Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences (Muhas) Tanzania as they share their ideas on how to improve awareness on diabetes and hypertension in Tanzania-watch VIDEO

Today, Merck, a one of the leading science and technology companies in healthcare, life science and performance materials, marks World Hypertension Day today, with the announcement of the 2016 ‘Merck Hypertension Award’ winners and the call for applications for the 2017 Hypertension Award.

The award was launched in April 2016 in partnership with African and Asian universities with the aim of building a platform of hypertension experts across the globe.

This goes along with the future launching of the Merck Capacity Advancement Program in September. This will be its fifth edition of the Clinical Diabetes and Hypertension Management tour across Africa and Asia.

By the end of 2017, more than 25,000 medical undergraduates and postgraduates will benefit from the Clinical Diabetes and Hypertension Management training program in partnership with African universities.

The universities include the Muhimbili University of Allied and Health and Allied Sciences in Tanzania, University of Nairobi, Kenya, Makerere University, Uganda, Namibia University, Namibia, Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia, University of Ghana, Ghana, Universidade Agostinho Neto and Angola Eduardo Mondlane, Mozambique.

In addition, Asian universities such as Dubai Medical University, UAE, Maharashtra University, India and University of Indonesia, Indonesia also benefited from the Clinical Diabetes and Hypertension Management training.

Regarding the award, Senior Vice President and Chief Social Officer, Merck Healthcare says, “Today marks an important day in the fight against hypertension as we mark the World Hypertension Day. In this context, we have announced ten Merck Hypertension Award 2016 winners.”

Merck invited medical students to apply for the “Merck Hypertension Award 2016” with the theme of “What the Healthy Heart needs.”

Students across African and Asian medical universities were asked to submit a concept paper on how to improve hypertension awareness, early detection and prevention in their countries and how to encourage their society, scientific community, local authorities, media and relevant stakeholders to ‘think and act’ on hypertension every day.

The scientific committee received over 500 concept submission applications from universities in Africa and Asia and 10 winners were selected for the award. Winners from each university have been granted a one year postgraduate Preventive Cardiovascular Medicine diploma with the University of South Wales, United Kingdom.

“Merck Hypertension Award is another step in our long term commitment to supporting hypertension care strategy through working with local governments, academia and relevant stakeholders in building healthcare capacity with a focus on diabetes, hypertension and other non-communicable diseases in various countries in Asia-Pacific, Middle East, Africa and Latin America,” added Rasha Kelej when making the announcement of the winners during an event in Nairobi, Kenya.

Prof. Eligah Ogola, Vice President of Pan African Cardiology Society said: “This combined diabetes and hypertension education program will contribute towards providing guidelines and clinical practice for prevention, diagnosis and management of these diseases and their complications.”

He added, “The objective of this initiative is to increase the level of knowledge for medical students who will work in the near future with patients to help them prevent, understand and control the diseases across the continent.”

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