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DH launches online CVD tool

The Department of Health has launched a new online tool showing variations for heart disease and stroke across England

The UK's Department of Health (DH) has launched a new online tool showing variations for cardiovascular disease (CVD), including heart disease and stroke, across England.

Compiled by the South East Public Health Observatory (SEPHO), CVD Profiles contains key information concerning the conditions across primary care trusts (PCTs) in England, including incidence mortality, treatments and costs.

The DH said the tool allows comparisons across the country, encouraging the better targeting of resources and improving standards.

An interactive atlas is available as part of the online toolkit, with comparable measurements showing a greater incidence of CVD for under-75s in more deprived areas of the country, including Manchester, Tower Hamlets and  Liverpool.

Other indicators which are available to compare include levels of obesity, percentage of the population eating fruit and vegetables and emergency readmissions for people following a stroke.

Dr Max Kammerling, NHS consultant in Public Health Medicine, SEPHO, said the profile results were "very positive" overall, with a falling trend for CVD nationwide, but commented on the need to focus on improving standards in areas of low socio-economic standing.

Kammerling said: "The challenge for local health services will be to continue to direct efforts to reaching those communities, working with them to reduce the major contributors to developing cardiovascular diseases, such as smoking, obesity and poor diet."

Professor Roger Boyle, national clinical director for Heart Disease and Stroke with the DH, also commented on the new online tool: "These profiles offer a snapshot of where we need to focus efforts to improve these services. They are a sobering reminder of the public health challenges around poor diet and obesity. But different parts of the country can learn from each other too, which is part of the importance of making this data publicly available."

SEPHO has the CVD Profiles tool available online.

14th March 2011

From: Healthcare

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