This Heart Week, from 3-9 May 2021, the focus of the Health Foundation is on supporting health professionals to deliver more Heart Health Checks to eligible patients; this is a vital step to empower people to better look after their heart health.
The COVID-19 pandemic has significantly disrupted health services and led to indirect health consequences. Data shows a significant drop in the number of preventative health assessments in 2020, especially for services that could not be delivered via telehealth, such as Heart Health Checks.
Heart related health is one of Gippsland PHN’s priorities. Coronary heart disease is the leading cause of death for males and females in Gippsland. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have a hospitalisation rate for heart related issues four times higher than non-Indigenous people. People who experience social and financial worries have a significantly higher risk of heart disease. For more information about Gippsland PHN’s Health Needs Assessment, visit https://www.gphn.org.au/populationhealthplanning/assessment/
Primary care clinicians face a backlog of patients in need of preventative and chronic disease related cardiovascular care. Even during a period of competing priorities, the prevention and management of cardiovascular disease has never been so critical.
After a period of lockdowns, health, family and economic pressures, it’s time to return our attention to the prevention and management of cardiovascular disease.
At this time of increased health awareness, we are encouraging Australians to get back to looking after their heart health: a great place to start is by keeping up with regular medical appointments and speaking with their doctor about relevant medical tests.
This Heart Week, health professionals are encouraged to:
- Re-engage with patients about their heart health, including people coming in for a COVID-19 vaccination
- Engage with the broader general practice team to identify and recall at-risk patients, ensuring they have a Heart Health Check
- Support patients to better understand their risk of developing heart disease and what they can do to lower their risk
- Spread the word through local communities
For more information, go to Heart Week | The Heart Foundation
To access the Heart Week toolkit, go to 210401-Heart-Week-Toolkit-D2_Updated.pdf (heartfoundation.org.au)
Gippsland HealthPathways has a suite of Cardiology pathway to supports health professionals, visit Gippsland HealthPathways https://gippsland.healthpathways.org.au/25270.htm?zoom_highlight=cardiology)