Awareness campaign for women against heart diseases


New Delhi : The All India Heart Foundation (AIHF) will launch an awareness drive for heart diseases among women, which they consider the most neglected and least prioritised group in the society.

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A brainchild of AIHF president S. Padmavati, the campaign, which would be implemented by “The Red Brigade of Women”, aims at addressing the susceptibility of women to heart diseases.

The 10 member “brigade” would not only comprise women doctors and a nursing superintendent but would also include housewives and young women professionals.

“Heart diseases can occur at any age irrespective of whether it is men or women, children or adults. It’s a question of leading a healthy lifestyle and wellness,” Padmavati told IANS here on the sidelines of an event organised to observe World Heart Day.

World Heart Day is observed to make people around the globe aware that heart disease and strokes are the world’s leading causes of death, claiming 17.2 million lives each year.

The 90-year-old AIHF president hoped to trigger off the awareness drive by training the Red Brigade about symptoms to watch out for and things to avoid to ward off heart disease. These women will then spread the message in the areas in a similar fashion.

“This is a very commendable idea since women are very susceptible group to heart diseases. Even though they are not addressed in the most national campaigns, they need to be the first targeted as they are the ones who end up guiding the entire family,” said Chacko George, the AIHF secretary and member, National Heart Institute.

Sunday’s event included an interaction between doctors and people from all walks of life, where doctors shared tips for good health and cleared myths prevalent among people about heart diseases.

As per the National Cardiology Update Conference 2009, in the past five decades, the rates of coronary disease among urban populations in India has risen from four percent to 11 percent.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) estimates that by 2010, 60 percent of the world’s cardiac patients would be Indians.