Prevention has always been the core of our work at the Irish Heart Foundation.
The Institute of Public Health estimates that the number of Irish adults with cardiovascular disease (hypertension, coronary heart disease, stroke and diabetes) will increase by around 40% by 2020. What’s more, as life expectancy increases, people are living longer with cardiovascular disease and this requires greater community‐based care and support services for all.
The OECD (the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) has identified a number of significant challenges for countries – like us – seeking to reduce cardiovascular disease:
Sadly all of these challenges are apparent within the Irish system.
We believe the Government of Ireland must prioritise programmes to reduce cardiovascular disease risk factors, particularly structured prevention programmes in primary care. At the Irish Heart Foundation, we are advocating and urging for the roll out of the European Society of Cardiology Guidelines on the Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease in Clinical Practice at a primary care level.
The Irish Heart Foundation continues to advocate that reform of the health system should put health promotion and prevention of cardiovascular disease and chronic disease at its core. It’s truly the difference between life and death for thousands upon thousands of people in Ireland each year. And someday it could be you or someone you know.
As an organisation for patients, the Irish Heart Foundation is primarily concerned and focused on how the cardiovascular disease patients we represent (many of whom have multiple care needs) are served by the Irish health system.
Recent developments in healthcare treatments and our ageing population mean that healthcare provision now primarily focuses on the management of chronic diseases, and particularly on older patients with a combination of chronic diseases.
Many cardiovascular disease patients require medical, rehabilitation and social care services – all at the same time. Therefore it is essential that the health system evolves around a proper all-round system of chronic disease management. It’s vital.
The Irish Heart Foundation makes important submissions to the Government and state agencies on health policy and issues affecting cardiovascular health. Our wide library of policy submissions is available on request.
Please contact our Policy Manager, Kathryn Reilly at firstname.lastname@example.org
Submission on the Future of Healthcare; to support the Oireachtas adopting a 10‐year plan for healthcare (2016)