Heart health

Storm for heart caused by COVID-19

Cardiovascular disease (CVD), including heart disease and stroke, is the world’s leading cause of death, claiming 17.5 million lives annually, and by 2030 this figure is expected to rise to 23 million. The COVID-19 pandemic caused new challenge for heart health.

Three main factors are contributing to this phenomenon, according to World Heart Federation. First, people with COVID-19 and heart disease are among those with the highest risk of death and of developing severe conditions. Second, after the virus attacks, the heart might be adversely affected even in people without previous heart conditions, potentially resulting in long-term damage. Finally, fear of the virus has already led to a sharp decline in hospital visits by heart patients for routine and emergency care.

Professor Karen Sliwa, President of World Heart Federation, said: “In these trying times, it is paramount that we pay special attention to those who are at greater risk of complications from COVID-19 as well as better understand how the virus is affecting the hearts of otherwise healthy people. COVID-19 has created a perfect storm, in which those people with cardiovascular disease fare poorly, and those at risk don’t seek the treatment that they need to keep their hearts healthy. The heart and the entire vascular system are in danger and we need to act now. The world has not experienced a global event on this scale in decades – today we have a unique opportunity to unite, to mobilise our skills and to use our heart to act.”

Cardiovascular disease has many risk factors: from smoking to diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity, and air pollution. Researchers at The George Institute for Global Health are committed to advocating for healthy lifestyles, driving innovation in cardiovascular diseases treatment, preventing repeat heart attacks, identifying ways to lower cardiovascular disease risk factors, and finding ways to improve health outcomes for people living with heart disease all over the world. 

Professor Craig Anderson, Executive Director of The George Institute China, said, “ The COVID-19 pandemic just brings new challenges for the heart health management. It’s time for the whole society join hands advocating for healthier lifestyle and behavior changes.”


About World Heart Day

World Heart Day is celebrated each year on 29 September to raise awareness and mobilize international action against cardiovascular disease (CVD), the leading cause of death on the planet. It is the global initiative under which individuals, governments and the entire heart community come together to engage in fun activities, increase public education, and advocate for universal access to CVD prevention, detection and treatment.