Monday, October 1, 2012

Over 90 Million Indians are at Risk of Vascular Diseases

With over 90 million Indians being at risk for various types of vascular diseases including stroke, peripheral arterial disease (PAD), carotid artery disease and aortic aneurysms, this high incidence of vascular diseases is  a matter of great concern for the country.

This concern was raised by none but the Union Minister of Health & Family Welfare, Ghulam Nabi Azad, at Jaipur on 28th September, 2012.

Addressing the 19th Annual Conference of Vascular Society of India as Chief Guest, Azad said that his his Ministry has already launched a national programme to prevent and control Cancer, Diabetes, Cardiovascular Diseases and Stroke in 100 backward districts of the country.
Over 10 million persons of 30 years and above have been screened so far for diabetes and hypertension. Out of this, 7.27% are suspected for diabetes and 6.44% for hypertension. In addition to this, a cardiac care unit is being set up in 100 districts of the country where funds for infrastructure, equipment, human resources and drugs will be provided by Health Ministry.

According to the World Health Organization, of the 58 million deaths globally, approximately 35 million were due to chronic non-communicable diseases.
In India, NCDs like CVDs, diabetes, chronic obstructive lung disease, cancer and injuries have already become the dominant cause of disease burden contributing about 2/3rd of the total disease burden.
The number of deaths attributed to chronic diseases was 3.78 million in 1990, i.e. 40.4% of all deaths and is projected to reach an expected 7.63 million in 2020, i.e. 66.7% of all deaths. About 38 million persons were affected with Cardio-vascular diseases in 2005 and the number may go up to 64 million by 2015.
High blood pressure is as common as 10-15% in the adult population, more so in metros and large cities.

During UN General Assembly Special Session on NCDs, held in September 2011 in New York, all countries of the world made a commitment in the Political Declaration to combat key NCDs including cardiovascular diseases which shows that the whole world has united in the struggle against the rising incidence of such diseases.

Shri Azad said that India has only about 59 doctors for every 100,000 people, which is much less than the ratio prevailing in developed countries. Despite that Indian doctors are taking care of a huge population and disease burden.
Vascular surgery as a speciality has grown in India by leaps and bounds in the last decade, which has helped many needy patients. However, despite that many lives and limbs are still lost due to the non-availability of timely assistance and expertise, Azad said.


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