Investment, action urged to improve access, quality and equity in women’s heart health

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Investing in and promoting research, public awareness and equity in women’s heart health is critical to women’s health and well-being, according to a new Presidential Decree from the American Heart Association, published today in the journal group. Round. The recommendation is a call to action to identify and remove barriers to access to health, quality and equality for women. Véronique L. Roger, MD, MPH, FAHA, author of the advisory committee and senior researcher at the National Heart Center said “We are losing ground on important cardiovascular health symptoms among women, including high blood pressure, weight control and diabetes. ” , Lung, and Blood Center, an area of ​​the National Institutes of Health.

The proposal also highlights the need for cultural change in how heart disease occurs health data are presented to achieve a healthy balance for women. “Comparing data from women and data from men actually puts data from men as a gold standard,” Roger said. “For example, the belief that women have a heart attack will often present with atypical symptoms bearing the scars that women are displaying in the ‘wrong way.’ ’The recommendation further suggests that specific data for women who do not label a woman as“ kind ” ‘i “can lead to improved research or treatment options, they help. increase maintaining justice. The proposal outlines a roadmap, which is divided into four main areas that require care and investment to address women’s issues. heart health: 1) epidemics and prevention; 2) to know; 3) access to and adequate medical care; and 4) the involvement of health professionals, researchers and communities. “We must urgently address the growing knowledge gap healthy delivery to reduce gender-based differences and achieve equality. There is no improvement in cardiovascular health without a healthy balance, “said presidential adviser Nanette K. Wenger, MD, FAHA, a professor of cardiology at Emory University School of Medicine, a consultant for Emory.Heart and Cardiovascular Center, consultant to Emory Women’s Heart Center and director of Cardiac Clinics and Ambulatory Electrocardiographic Laboratory at Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta.

Epidemiology and Prevention

According to January 2022 Updated Heart Attack Statistics and Publications, heart disease is the leading cause of death for men and women in the United States, and nearly half (44.4%) of adult women between the ages of 20 and 2018 have some type of cardiovascular disease including high blood pressure. The decision emphasizes that some risk factors for heart the disease is more specific to women or carries a different risk for CVD events in women than in men. These include:

  • Risks associated with menstrual conditions: onset of adolescence (age 11 years), early menopause (age 40) or hormonal imbalances leading to ovarian dysfunction (polycystic ovarian syndrome) or unpredictable seizures not.
  • Risks associated with pregnancy and childbirth: high blood pressure or diabetes during pregnancy, preterm birth, and the birth of a baby below average weight.
  • Risks associated with the use of oral contraceptives and hormone replacement therapy.
  • Women suffer from inflammatory and autoimmune diseases including lupus, rheumatoid arthritis and scleroderma. These conditions are associated with an increased risk of heart attack, coronary heart disease, and stroke.
  • Anxiety and stress are more frequently associated with heart disease and in younger women than men.
  • The risk associated with treatment for cancer is higher in women, such as breast cancer, cervical cancer or breast cancer. Some treatments can harm the heart, so women may need to take care of their heart health during and after treatment.

“We need to help women create a ‘way of life’ about their health, where they are empowered to control the risk of heart disease at every stage of life,” Wenger said. Particularly worrying for consultants: Heart health is declining among American women who are contemplating pregnancy, and the health of pregnant women is less than ideal. These factors can lead to pregnancy problems for the mother and to health risks or complications for her and her children. “We recommend cardiologists, primary care physicians and obstetricians and gynecologists work together to quantify and reduce the risk of heart disease in a woman’s life. These partnerships are critical to developing and implementing the best possible solutions to improve the health of women as a whole, ”said Wenger.


Cardio counseling and education campaigns have made great strides in improving education and behavior among women between 2004 and 2009: awareness of heart disease as leading to female mortality rises 30% to 56%. However, public awareness has declined, with 44% of women identifying heart disease as their main killer in 2019. Awareness raising is the largest among them. girls (ages 25-34) and among those who identify themselves as Black or Hispanic. To address these falling numbers, the advisory committee recommended improving education for health professionals. Nearly 7 out of 10 postgraduate coaches report a lack of training on psychiatry techniques, and only 22% of physicians and 42% of cardiologists feel ready to diagnose heart disease especially for women. Nearly 2 years ago, the American Heart Association led an effort to raise awareness of women’s heart health, including Go Red for Women in 2004. Under the umbrella of Go Red, the Association launched Redirect Search in 2019 in partnership with Verily’s Project Baseline. Goes Red Research is an online platform that aims to integrate more women, especially young women and women of color, into clinical studies to better understand their specific symptoms, risk, diagnosis and treatment.

Access and Delivery of Standard Health Care

While many factors affect access to quality heart care, affordable health insurance and high cost of living are the two most important factors affecting whether people have access to health care. The resolution states that the Patient Protection and Care Act (ACA), signed into law in the United States in 2010, improves access to health insurance for women ages 19 to 64, the highest coverage benefit of any category. pens. In recent years, the expansion of Medicaid coverage by the ACA has been shown to increase coverage and health care among low-income women of childbearing age, which could lead to improvements in pre-existing health, pregnancy, heart health and chronic pain management.

  • The 2018 Commonwealth Fund report notes that more than 25% of women spend $ 2,000 or more annually on health care out of pocket, and more than one-third need care because of the cost.
  • Excessive reasons for delayed health care are not understood. The number of women reporting delayed nursing, dental care and medication has not changed significantly in 30 years.
  • Special recommendations call for more effective measurements to address these differences and affect most variables.

“Our normal approach to these questions is to ‘look back’ on the data we have already captured to assess what is happening. This is useful, however, we need to ‘monitor’ in real time, or near real-time, to be aware of and analyze changes as they occur, so we can integrate new strategies and tackle gaps and / or barriers quickly, ”Roger said. high blood pressure administered in the larger communities, the American Heart Association, in partnership with the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Public Health and the Office of Primary Health Care, launched the program. Promoting low blood pressure in 2021. This initiative is an evidence-based, community-based effort to reduce high blood pressure, which in turn affects black women compared to women of other ethnic groups.

Call to Action

The group and its partners are committed to improving women’s heart health throughout life. The Presidential Decree concludes with six specific calls to action for health professionals, researchers and the public. The advice required:

  • Creating and implementing awareness campaigns that are culturally relevant and relevant, and emphasizing the benefits of prevention and education;
  • Improving prevention and clinical care through a partnership between cardiology, other specialties such as obstetrics / gynecology and primary care to improve the diagnosis of coronary heart disease. dangers and ensuring tools for risk assessment include specific items for women;
  • Increase research focus for women, in particular mata from different tribes and ethnic groups and minorities;
  • Involving communities in heart health programs, some starting in the elementary school years, to connect girls and parents and strengthen families;
  • Encourage advocacy for public policy and council activities that address public health issues, which may include access to safe food, public facilities for physical activity and prevention and effective treatment; same to you
  • Diagnosis and treatment of diseases and risk data to obtain the best possible data to improve prevention and outcome and to provide improved health.

“Providing these advances in research and addressing the underlying gap and health access problems is critical to the American Heart Association’s commitment to improving heart health for all,” Roger said. This Presidential Decree was written by a group of volunteers on behalf of the American Heart Association. Professional leaders of the American Heart Association promote awareness of cardiovascular disease and stroke issues and help facilitate decisions about public health and policy through explain what is currently known about a particular issue and recommend improvements. While the president’s recommendations inform the progress of the leaders, they do not make medical recommendations. The leaders of the American Heart Association recommend the hospital’s clinical practice.

Heart disease in women is not the same as heart disease in men

Learn more:
Calls for the Practice of Cardiovascular Disease in Women: Epidemiology, Awareness, Access, and Equal Health Care: A Presidential Advice from the American Heart Association, Round (2022). DOI: 10.1161 / CIR.0000000000001071

hint: Investment, action needed to improve access, quality and stability in women’s mental health (2022, May 9) Returned May 9, 2022 from -action-urged-access-quality .html

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