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Mary LaskerMary Lasker
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There is a lot to be done. You don't have to just set up individual centers, although some centers are needed because they're places like Central Harlem where they don't have any hospitals or centers, and those are the places where they have the highest death rates.

Now on the national level for high blood pressure, the death rates in 1978 were 8.8, the same as in 1977. These are the lowest death rates ever recorded for the United States, and they're due entirely to the drop in the deaths from stroke and from heart attack.

Now, these deaths, the deaths from stroke, declined further nationally to 22 percent fewer deaths than in 1973, and on the heart side, they remained 8 percent below '73.

Now, starting in 1979, I have the monthly deaths up to the 1st of March. The stroke death rate is continuing to decline. The heart death rate also in some categories is declining. And the reason that it didn't decline in '78 was that in early '78 we had a severe flue epidemic, and then people who have heart problems, elderly people with heart problems, get the flu and can't survive the respiratory stress of it.

This decline in deaths has absolutely befogged the average doctor because most of them don't realize that 86 million dollars of free time on the air was obtained by the Advertising Council (and in three years), and that this drove people to the doctors. And doctors in their offices are giving people diuretics and anti-hypertensive drugs, which has made this





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