ISLAMABAD: As many as 47 people lose their lives to cardiac arrest every hour in Pakistan, said Cardiac Centre, Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (Pims), Chairman Dr Naeem Malik.

He was speaking at a press conference held in connection with World Heart Day on Wednesday.

Dr Malik said there was a need to take cardiac diseases seriously and work on their prevention, adding that diabetes, hypertension, smoking and inactive lifestyle were major reasons of heart attacks.

“Every year, 17 million people die of heart problems across the globe. In Pakistan, around 19pc deaths were reported due to heart-related issues in 2016, which have now risen to 29pc,” he added.

Deaths from heart-related diseases have increased from 19pc in 2016 to 29pc, official says

Dr Malik said unfortunately hospitals and policymakers focus on stents rather than creating awareness among people about preventions.

“There is a need to establish primary healthcare units in hospitals to give awareness to people on prevention of diseases; we are considering doing the same in Pims,” he said.

Talking to Dawn, Pims Media Coordinator Dr Waseem Khawaja said people should adopt an active lifestyle.

“Every person should make walk a routine in their daily life and have a balanced diet,” he added.

Meanwhile Pakistan National Heart Association (PANAH) organised a walk in Islamabad on the occasion.

Special guests included Representative of the World Health Organisation (WHO) in Pakistan Dr Palitha Mahipala and Chairman Pakistan Sweet Homes Zamarud Khan.

They were accompanied by political leaders, human rights activists and people from all walks of life. This year’s theme for World Heart Day was ‘Use Heart to Connect’.

PANAH Representative Sanaullah Ghumman said life was not possible without a healthy heart.

“Heart disease is the world’s number one killer. The main causes of heart disease include smoking, excessive consumption of sugar sweetened beverages, diabetes, high blood pressure and obesity,” Mr Ghumman said, adding that around 520 million people worldwide live with cardio-vascular disease (CVD). “Heart treatment is very expensive, and in order to prevent it, it is necessary to give up habits that cause heart disease,” he said.

Published in Dawn, September 30th, 2021

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