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Cardio Vasicular Diseases

Cardiovascular diseases (CVD) is a general term for conditions affecting the heart or blood vessels.

CVD includes all heart and circulatory diseases, including coronary heart disease, angina, heart attack, congenital heart disease, hypertension, stroke, vascular dementia and rheumatic heart disease (RHD). We aim to help individuals prevent, treat and manage cardiovascular disease.

According to the world health organization (WHO), CVD is the leading cause of death worldwide accounting for 17.9 million lives each year. The burden of CVD in the world is enormous and growing, and Africa has not been spared this global tide, in most sub Saharan Africa CVD is now the second most common cause of death after infectious disease and is a major cause of chronic illness and disability.

More than half of CVD deaths in Africa occur among people between 30 and 69 years of age an age 10 years or more below the equivalent group in Europe and North America. One of the strongest drivers is undiagnosed and untreated hypertension, which affects nearly one in two Africans over the age of 25—the highest rate of any continent in the world.

According to WHO’s Global Health Observatory (GHO) worldwide, raised blood pressure is estimated to cause 7.5 million deaths, and accounts for 57 million disability adjusted life years (DALYS). Death and disability in middle age have major social and economic consequences, depriving families of parents, workplaces of employees, and communities of leaders.

Cardiovascular diseases, including stroke, kill 17.9 million people worldwide each year – a figure expected to reach over 23 million per year by 2030.

The burden of CVDs in Low and Medium Income Countries(LMICs) is compounded by a lack of integrated primary health care programs for early detection and treatment of people with increased risk. Consequently, many people in LMICs who suffer from CVD have less access to effective and equitable health care services which respond to their needs. Subsequently, many individuals are detected late in the course of the disease and die young from CVD, often in their most productive years.

CHDs cause the majority of pediatric cardiovascular deaths in Uganda. With a population of about 34.6 million, and a population growth of 3.03%, according to the Uganda Heart Institute (UHI) about 8300 children are born with CHDs in the country annually.

Like many of the LMICs Uganda’s public health system is poorly organized and inadequately funded, the public health interventions in the country focus on the more prevalent communicable diseases like Malaria, diarrhea, Tuberculosis and HIV. Non communicable diseases like Cardiovascular programs tend to be in the lower level of the priority list on the public health agenda. Yet WHO states that almost half the disease burden in low- and middle-income countries is already due to noncommunicable diseases.