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that Prevent



World Health Organization

Strategic Priorities of WHO in Preventing
Cardiovascular Diseases
Research and Global Partnership Initiatives
Regional activities
WRIGHT Project
Implementation tools
Top 10 Causes of Death and Comparisons

Strategic Priorities of WHO in

Preventing Cardiovascular
Diseases (CVDs)
The WHO Program on Cardiovascular Diseases works on prevention, management and
monitoring of cardiovascular disease (CVD) globally. It aims to develop global strategies
to reduce the incidence, morbidity and mortality of cardiovascular diseases (CVD) by:

effectively reducing CVD risk factors and their determinants;

developing cost effective and equitable health care innovations for management of

monitoring trends of CVD and their risk factors.

Key areas of work

Our goal is to effectively control CVD risk factors and to reduce the
burden of the fast growing cardiovascular disease epidemic, particularly
in developing countries. Our key areas of work include:
Reduce major CVD risk factors and their social and economic determinants
through community based programmes for integrated prevention of NCDs.
Development of standards of care and cost-effective case management for
Global action to enhance the capacity of countries to meet the health care
needs of CVD.
Developing feasible surveillance methods to assess the pattern and trends of
major CVDs and risk factors and to monitor prevention and control initiatives.
Developing effective inter-country, interregional and global networks and
partnerships for concerted global action.

Research and Global

Partnership Initiatives
Cardiovascular Health Research Initiative in developing countries

The CVD Research Initiative began in November 1998 as a joint programme

of WHO and the Global Forum for Health Research. The partnership has since
expanded to include the Institute of Medicine, World Heart Federation,
National Public Health Institute (Finland), World Hypertension League,
International Obesity Task Force, International Institute for Health and
Development (Australia), Institut Universitaire de Mdecine Sociale et
Prventive (Switzerland), Centres for Disease Control (USA), and National
Institutes of Health (USA). The Initiative has developed six multicentre
collaborative research projects on capacity assessment, surveillance,
community-based interventions, clinical management and global information

INTER-HEART: risk factors for acute

myocardial infarction
INTER-HEART is a global case-control study that seeks to understand the
importance of both traditional and emerging risk factors for acute
myocardial infarction. The findings will be relevant for developing health
policies that can be applied to different countries and ethnic groups. The
study may also lead to cohort studies in participating countries and foster
a network of committed investigators in approximately 50 countries.
INTER-HEART is sponsored by the WHO and the World Heart Federation,
and has received funding from peer-review agencies and industry.

Regional activities
The Americas
The Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) is promoting CARMEN (Actions for the Multifactorial Reduction of
Non-communicable Diseases) as a general framework for the prevention and control of NCDs in the Americas.
This initiative was created in 1997 to reduce risk factors for NCDs, particularly cardiovascular disease, by
coordinating health promotion and disease prevention activities in communities and community health services.
CVD and other chronic conditions are rapidly increasing in Africa, and poverty plays a major role in the impact of
these diseases on communities. Benin, Cameroon, Mali, Zambia, Zimbabwe and Algeria are participating in WHO
Global Programme for Prevention and Control of Rheumatic Fever and Rheumatic Heart Disease. A regional
advisory board is being set up to assist with managing the programme.
South-East Asia
Growing evidence shows that CVD poses an important health threat to disadvantaged and poor segments of
population. A top priority of the South-East Asia WHO regional office (SEARO) is thus to promote the
development of reliable, inexpensive and sustainable surveillance systems for major NCDs and their risk factors,
that can be used at both regional and national levels. Advocacy and technical support aimed at integrating
national NCD prevention and control programmes also continue in the region.

WRIGHT Project
WHO Research Into Global Hazards of Travel (WRIGHT)
Project on air travel and venous thromboembolism
The WRIGHT project, which was set up on 21 June 2001, is a comprehensive
research programme developed by the WRIGHT group under the auspices of the
World Health Organization.
The project consists of a series of research studies to fill the key information
gaps in available knowledge on the suspected link between air travel and
venous thrombosis. The studies which cover epidemiological, clinical and
physiological areas, will provide key information on the frequency of venous
thrombosis, the magnitude of its association with air travel, and the caused
mechanisms to possible prevention strategies for air travellers.

Implementation tools

These tools of the WHO Package of Essential Non-communicable Diseases Interventions

(WHO PEN) support implementation of very cost effective interventions through an
integrated approach.
Implementation of WHO PEN is a key component of the objective 4 of the Global Action Plan.
These tools will enable early detection and management of cardiovascular diseases,
diabetes, chronic respiratory diseases and cancer to prevent life threatening complications
(e.g. heart attacks, stroke, kidney failure, amputations, blindness).
Effective implementation of WHO PEN, combined with other very cost effective populationwide interventions, will help even resource constrained settings to attain the global voluntary
targets related to reduction of premature mortality and preventionof heart attacks and
Equitable financing of interventions in WHO PEN can be a first step for addressing prevention
and control of noncommunicable diseases within the universal health coverage agenda.

Top 10 Causes of
Death and

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