Cardiology Leaders Call for Global Prevention of Heart Disease, Stroke

Contact: Beth Casteel,, 202-375-6275

WASHINGTON (Sept. 29, 2014) — Heart disease and stroke contribute to 30 percent of global deaths, more than all infectious and parasitic diseases combined, and 11 cardiovascular organizations are calling for the United Nations to address prevention of heart disease and other non-communicable diseases.

In a statement published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology and other cardiology journals, the World Heart Federation’s Global Cardiovascular Disease Taskforce—which is comprised of cardiologists and health advocates from the World Heart Federation, African Heart Network, Asia Pacific Heart Network, Asian Pacific Society of Cardiology, American Heart Association, American College of Cardiology, European Heart Network, European Society of Cardiology, InterAmerican Heart Foundation, InterAmerican Society of Cardiology, and the Pan-African Society of Cardiology—calls for the United Nations to support efforts to curb the world-wide rise in non-communicable diseases including heart disease and stroke. 

“We must cooperate and collaborate across sectors and disciplines to advance and affirm a positive return of investment in cardiovascular health; only then will we influence countries and businesses to devote crucial resources to our collective goal, which is vital to human health and wellbeing across the world,” the task force said in the statement Sustainable Development Goals and the Future of Cardiovascular Health. 

Globally, it is estimated that from 2011-2025, the economic burden of non-communicable diseases will be $7 trillion, with cardiovascular disease accounting for most of that expense.

“Prevention of cardiovascular disease through support of healthy diets and physical activity along with blood pressure control and anti-smoking efforts should be part of—if not at the center of—the U.N.’s health goals in 2015 and beyond since these factors are so closely tied to many health issues,” said ACC past-President William A. Zoghbi, MD, MACC, a co-chair of the task force.  

The American College of Cardiology is a 47,000-member medical society that is the professional home for the entire cardiovascular care team. The mission of the College is to transform cardiovascular care and to improve heart health. The ACC leads in the formation of health policy, standards and guidelines. The College operates national registries to measure and improve care, provides professional medical education, disseminates cardiovascular research and bestows credentials upon cardiovascular specialists who meet stringent qualifications. For more information, visit

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