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Bristol City Council and the British Heart Foundation have teamed up to help raise awareness about coronary heart disease, its causes, treatment and prevention.
Did you know that someone in the UK has a heart attack every two minutes? About 2.7 million people in the UK have coronary heart disease (CHD) and it is the nation’s number one cause of death.
About 12,000 people in Bristol have coronary heart disease. Heart disease is the biggest single killer of both men and women in Bristol. It causes about 470 deaths each year (6 out of every 10 deaths).
Having high blood pressure and diabetes doubles the risk of heart disease. About 17,000 people in Bristol have diabetes and more than 50,000 have high blood pressure.
One of the best ways to help prevent and treat coronary heart disease is to adopt a healthy lifestyle.
Losing weight, becoming physically active, having a healthy diet, reducing alcohol intake, stopping smoking and reducing salt and caffeine intake have been shown to reduce the level of risk. Type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol levels can all be helped by switching to a healthier lifestyle. You can find out more about how to improve your lifestyle and getting a lifestyle check by visiting the British Heart Foundation Prevention webpage.
British Heart Foundation (BHF) estimate that 30,000 people have a heart attack outside hospital each year and only 10% survive. They’ve teamed up with Vinnie Jones to launch a new campaign about how to save lives. This teaches people how to carry out hands-only compressions (without mouth-to-mouth resuscitation), to the beat of the Bee Gees’ Staying Alive. Find out more by visiting the BHF website.
The BHF currently provides £18.5 million of research funding to the University of Bristol and £2.1 million to Bristol Royal Infirmary. This includes:
- Funding for Professor Gianni Angelini, Chair of Cardiac Surgery, who is investigating new techniques for use in surgery.
- Professor Andrew Newby, Chair of Vascular Cell Biology, who is looking for ways to prevent heart attacks by targeting the immune system.
- Funding to Professor Raimundo Ascione for the world’s first clinical trial to investigate whether stem cells can be used to repair heart muscle cells damaged by a heart attack.
- 3 specialist heart nurses based at the Bristol Heart Institute who look after patients suffering from Arrhythmias (heart rhythm disorders which affect over 700,000 people in England)
- a specialist nurse who provides practical and emotional support to adults with congenital heart disease and their families.
- 79 defibrillators, including 20 for the Great West Ambulance Service. These machines save lives by shocking the heart back into a normal rhythm in the event of a cardiac arrest.
- Funding from the Hearty Lives programme, to children’s centres to encourage families to adopt healthier lifestyles. The programme includes free family activity classes, encouraging active travel, healthy cooking classes.
Healthy Hearts - www.bristol.gov.uk/page/cardiac-rehabilitation- Cardiac rehabilitation is a local education and exercise programme designed to help people manage their own heart condition
British Heart Foundation's Heart Matters - www.bhf.org.uk/heart-health/how-we-help/information/heart-matters.aspx- This is a free service which offers a package of support and information for people looking to improve their heart health. Once signed up, you have access to their magazine, online healthy recipes, updates on the latest information about taking care of your heart and much more.
NHS Choices Healthy Hearts - www.nhs.uk- These pages have excellent tips, advice and information about the prevention of, and recovery from heart disease. It features interactive tools, video and stories from real people who have survived, or are trying to prevent heart disease. It also has information and links to your local NHS health services.
Free NHS Health Checks - www.nhs.uk- Aged between 40 and 74? The new NHS Health Check can help you assess your risk of coronary heart disease, stroke, Diabetes and Kidney Disease. In this guide you can learn more about what the check is, what it involves, and when and how you can get it. There is information that will help you to understand more about your results when you receive them, and what to do next.
Smokefree Bristol - www.smokefreebristol.com- Quitting smoking can dramatically improve your heart and lung health. Find out more about smoking, its effect on us and our families (including the dog) and where to get help to stop.
Well Aware - www.wellaware.org.uk- Bristol's database of local and community organisations and services including activities for the entire family, and for all ages and abilities. Most are low or no cost and run by people in your community.