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Spotlight on heart disease in women with 'Queen of Heart' campaign

Bangalore, Aug 02, 2013

first of its kind "Queen of Heart" campaign has been launched to reach the estimated 450 million women in India and create awareness on cardiovascular diseases. A campaign supported by Biocon, a joint initiative of Heal Foundation in partnership with Indian Public Health Association (IPHA) and Centre for Community medicines AIIMS, New Delhi, it aims to educate more men and women about deaths, and risks associated with heart conditions.

Globally, World Health Organization (WHO) pegs the number of cardiovascular deaths among women at 8.6 million, which includes 34 % women from India. The campaign aims to turn the conventional perception that women are protected from heart ailments.

The first phase of the Million Death Study (2001-2003), analysing the causes of deaths in India annually, indicates that CVDs are the leading cause of death among women. In fact, women have greater CVD mortality because of problems in risk assessment, delays in diagnosis and management, clinical presentation (lower prevalence of myocardial infarction, more severe congestive heart failure, more severe angina), low quality of acute coronary care (coronary interventions, thrombolysis, pharmacological treatments), and fewer options for long-term management and secondary prevention.

"For strengthening and improving healthcare delivery in the country, it is very important to have a balanced approach towards universal health, which will remain an unrealized goal until interventional strategies encompass public health in the right way," said Kiran Mazumdar Shaw, chairman and managing director, Biocon.

"More young women are resorting to tobacco smoking these days, and this is one of the most significant factors behind why the incidence of CVDs among Indian women is on the rise," said Dr K Srinath Reddy, president, World Heart Federation and Public Health Foundation of India.

"It is disheartening that despite rising education and increasing awareness among Indian women, very few of us take daily exercise seriously when a simple routine of exercising for 30-45 minutes every day can help keep heart disease at bay," said Ashwini Nachappa, former national athlete and Arjuna Awardee who has also acted in a few films.

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