International Hospitals & Healthcare

Heart health awareness lacking

Man clutching his heart

New research from provider of health benefits and services Cigna Europe has found that there is a lack of awareness among UK people regarding detecting and addressing heart health problems and symptoms.

Cigna’s 360 Well-being Survey 2019 surveyed more than 13,000 people across 22 different countries and found that less than four in 10 Brits know their blood pressure rating, while less than one-third know their BMI number. This lack of awareness is surprising given that more than one in six Brits have experienced symptoms of heart problems in the past six months and more than one-quarter haven’t done anything to alleviate their symptoms. In addition, under three quarters of UK respondents said that they are not concerned with heart disease at old age.

Phil Austin, CEO, Cigna Europe, commented on the gravity of the findings: “This research paints a worrying picture for the UK. The country’s poor ranking for BMI and blood pressure awareness – two key measures for tracking heart health – as well the lack of concern for heart health in later life, means we could be sleep walking into an epidemic of cardiovascular disease.”

He highlighted the need for employers to play a role in helping employees to manage their heart health: “More than one-quarter of deaths in the UK are caused by heart and circulatory disease, so it’s important for companies to do all they can to help employees understand the importance of managing their heart health and help them better understand the early warning signs of poor heart health. Through making more information available to employees, employers can make a real difference to their employees’ lives and improve the state of the nation’s heart health.”

Cigna Europe has outlined its top five methods that people who have experienced heart problem symptoms have used to manage these symptoms ─ exercise more regularly, seek help from a GP, lose weight, eat a balanced diet and reduce stress.