New resource aims to improve health outcomes for Australians living with high-risk CV disease

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The international non-profit organisation, the Global Alliance for Patient Access (GAfPA), has launched a new patient education website, Know Your Numbers, Treat Your Risk, to support Australians who have experienced a heart attack, stroke or are at risk of a cardiovascular event.

The site aims to address the emotional impact and the clinical risk factors of cardiovascular disease.

The website’s resources support patients to understand the role of cholesterol and how high levels of low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) contribute to the risk of another heart attack or stroke.

An estimated 110 Australians have a heart attack each day. The website’s resources are designed to help them learn how to reduce their risk of a subsequent event.

“Empowering people who have had a heart attack to engage in their ongoing health care by working with their GP to develop a plan for their heart health has been shown to be critical to secondary prevention,” said Professor Charlotte Hespe, the head of general practice and primary care research at the Sydney School of Medicine.

“Know Your Numbers, Treat Your Risk uses educational resources, patient stories and interviews with experts to empower patients with the knowledge, tools and support to reduce their risk of another heart attack or stroke.”

Primary prevention is critical in the fight against cardiovascular disease. Yet there remain inadequate resources, funding, and focus dedicated to secondary prevention.

Patients and their doctors often aim to address high cholesterol through healthy eating, lifestyle modifications and medications, but many do not achieve target LDL-C levels that

The site also acknowledges the impact a cardiovascular event can have on mental health, with as many as 75 per cent of people experiencing Cardiac Blues.

Patient stories and expert interviews explore these feelings, which often occur in the first few weeks or months and are a normal part of recovery.