My heart lives in Portland, Ore. The reason I do my work is there too. That’s where I grew up and where I saw my grandfather earlier this month. If you ask him how he is doing, he’ll say, “I’m doing as well as I can be when you’re old like me.” See, over the years, he’s struggled with heart issues, but recently has been prescribed medicines that now give him a better quality of life.
On World Heart Day, when we celebrate the advances in cardiovascular science and disease prevention, does anyone in your life come to mind? When heart disease tops the list of deadly diseases that affects patients in America, today is an opportunity to focus on cardiovascular disease and the promotion of healthier heart hygiene. Thanks to America’s biopharmaceutical research companies and their commitment to developing 190 medicines for cardiovascular diseases, death rates from heart disease and stroke continue to fall each year.
But like my grandfather said, his medicines don’t work unless he takes them. Because more than 83 million Americans have at least one type of heart-related disease, the focus on preventative heart health is vital to preventing related diseases down the road – specifically the focus on adherence. In fact, the American Journal of Preventive Medicine found that an estimated 70 million people in the United States live with hypertension, while only half have the condition under control. And a recent report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that of the 18.5 million Part D beneficiaries who were prescribed anti-hypertensives, close to 5 million were non-adherent to their medications. Taking anti-hypertension medications can help patients take control of their condition day-to-day, but also can help prevent the cost and complications associated with urgent hospital visits.
World Heart Day is a reminder that innovation helps reduce the impact of heart disease on patients and families. Patients like my grandfather may live longer, more productive lives because of it – and we can share in it, one heartbeat at a time.
For more information about how America’s biopharmaceutical companies are fighting cardiovascular disease, visit http://www.fromhopetocures.org/fighting-cardiovascular-diseases.
Hannah Mooney Hannah is a Senior Manager of Public Affairs at PhRMA developing paid media programs and campaigns as well as assisting other PhRMA team members to cultivate a values-driven messaging platform on the value of the industry and the medicines our companies bring to the health care system. In a former life, she worked in grassroots advocacy and voter contact, supporting Members of Congress, their campaigns, and public affairs organizations with their legislative initiatives in addition to having worked in the U.S. Senate in communications. Hannah enjoys being outdoors and exploring all the city has to offer, teaching cycling classes, and finding new restaurants with good food and better patios in the District.