Cardiovascular Disease

Cardiovascular disease and health improvement

Cardiovascular diseases (CVD) are the leading cause of death, and include arrhythmias, stroke, heart attack, vascular disease, heart failure, and they kill around 17.9 million people annually, according to the World Health Organisation.

Disease prevention is the ideal, but not always possible given the genetic heritage and life circumstances people face.  Medication, surgery and treatment are critical to assist patients with acute disease, but what about reducing disease severity, or rehabilitation after a stroke, heart attack or surgery?

People with access to high quality healthcare may be offered advice from a general practitioner to reduce disease, drug treatments to decrease blood pressure, medications or surgery to improve heart or vascular function, and rehabilitation to speed recovery after a stroke or heart attack. But if you live hours from a hospital, in an area with little or no healthcare, or you lack the means to access it – what then?

Community sport-based interventions

The great news is that community sport-based interventions can assist in improving the health of people with, or at high risk of, cardiovascular disease by:

  • Providing opportunities and programs to increase physical activity
  • Educating participants about services and supports available to help
  • Providing nutritional education and advice
  • Making rehabilitation from surgery or stroke more accessible and affordable
  • Helping participants find enjoyable ways to sustain and support behaviour change

These programs already exist to help reduce CVD, improve access to support and rehabilitation.  They have the potential to compliment ‘as usual’ care, and to reduce the stress on hospitals. 

Sport Prescriptions aims to make establishing, measuring, reporting on, evaluating and expanding these programs easier.  We want to help more people live healthy lives, and to support the practitioners and programs that deliver for communities.