Death from heart disease down by 35 per cent

This improvement is a result of investment and reform in the NHS, announces health secretary Patricia Hewitt

Patricia Hewitt
Patricia Hewitt
Premature deaths from coronary heart disease (CHD) have fallen by 35.9 per cent since 1996, which is on track to meet the target of at least 40 per cent by 2010, according to a new report on the progress of CHD services launched by Patricia Hewitt today.

The 'Shaping the future', progress report celebrates improvements in heart services over the last six years, including:
  • The estimated number of lives saved through the use of statins has tripled since 2000;
  • Lower rates of premature death from CHD than ever before;
  • More consultant cardiologists and heart surgeons;
  • Twice as many people receiving clot-busting drugs within half an hour of arriving at hospital than in 2000; and
  • A 28 per cent reduction in the gap between the worst hit areas and the rest of the country in premature deaths from cardiovascular disease (heart disease, stroke and related diseases).

Health Secretary Patricia Hewitt said: ‘This report shows the fantastic achievements the NHS has made since 2000, not only in treating CHD patients - with better use of statins and faster access to heart surgery - but also in helping to prevent it, by working to reduce factors like smoking, which contribute to the disease.

'We are one of the highest spending countries in Europe for cardiovascular diseases, with one of the fastest improving services. More new cardiothoracic centres and catheter laboratories closer to people's homes, better equipment and lower mortality rates all demonstrate how the commitment of dedicated NHS professionals has helped to improve services for patients.'

This is the latest report documenting the progress of the NHS in delivering the National Service Framework for Coronary Heart Disease.

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