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WORLD HEART REPORT 2023: Confronting the world's number one killer!

Updated: Mar 10

Shared by Metulas Supplements.

Global progress against cardiovascular disease (CVD) is flatlining. Though rates of CVD deaths globally have fallen in the last three decades, this trend has begun to stall and, without concerted efforts, is at risk of reversing.

More than half a billion people around the world continue to be affected by cardiovascular diseases, which accounted for 20.5 million deaths in 2021 – close to a third of all deaths globally and an overall increase on the estimated 121 million CVD deaths.

Up to 80% of premature heart attacks and strokes can be prevented. The world has the tools and knowledge to mitigate harms to cardiovascular health, particularly with the advances in cardiovascular medicine in the last 50 years. But too often the tools that can help diagnose, prevent, and treat CVDs are not benefitting the communities who need them most.

Around 4 in every 5 CVD deaths occur in low- and middle-income countries and progress in cardiovascular health is increasingly concentrated in High-Income countries - a glaring health inequity that must urgently be addressed.

There is no one-size-fits-all approach to improving cardiovascular health globally. Every population is susceptible to different risk factors based on where they live and their lifestyles. Whether that’s having higher prevalence of tobacco and alcohol use and higher sodium intake or being more exposed to dangerous levels of air pollution and having lower levels of physical activity. This means that decision makers and stakeholders must look closely at the risk factor prevalence in their countries and regions to fully understand what policy areas need more focus to get CVD health moving in the right direction.

There are, however, baseline approaches that every country should implement to lay the foundation from which to build tailored activities to tackle CVDs. This includes implementing major policy initiatives that are essential to improving CVD health—such as National Tobacco Control Programmes, securing the availability of CVD drugs, and creating an Operational Unit in the Ministry of Health responsible for tackling non-communicable diseases (NCDs). Additionally, it requires adequately funding health systems and initiatives so that all communities can access the care they need.

The stalling progress in CVD health is not unique. Almost every health initiative around the world suffered because of the COVID-19 pandemic and countries are now grappling with which areas to prioritise as they aim to boost and protect the health of their populations. Given the severe burden of CVDs both in terms of mortality and morbidity, this area of health cannot be neglected.

The world will struggle to meet the ambitious targets it set to reduce premature mortality from NCDs by 25% compared to 2010 levels, by 2025. There is still time, however, to accelerate action toward meeting the Sustainable Development Goal 3.4 of reducing by one-third premature mortality from NCDs, including cardiovascular diseases. This goal aligns with the World Heart Federation’s (WHF) World Heart Vision 2030.

Full report here:

Copyright: World Heart Federation

WORLD HEART FEDERATION 32, rue de Malatrex, 1201 Geneva, Switzerland (+41 22) 807 03 20

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