In a time where Covid-19 is the main focus of most discussions and check-ups – many people are neglecting other health issues.
The Heart Foundation is imploring Australians to stop neglecting their heart health.
New research released on World Heart Day, finds that people with heart disease, or at high-risk of heart disease, were more likely to miss or delay an appointment with their GP; specifically between April and August.
A whopping 2.1 million Australians live with heart disease or are at high risk of heart disease.
The Heart Foundation calculates that more than 500,000 of these patients are skipping potentially life-saving check-ups. People are also skipping ongoing management of their condition during the pandemic.
Moreover, it’s concerning that this is likely to continue.
“Heart disease doesn’t stop during a pandemic,” says Heart Foundation General Manager of Heart Health, Bill Stavreski.
“It is vital that you continue to monitor your heart health and stay in contact with your GP, and there are options to do this safely via telehealth or in person.
“We’re concerned about the implications of this neglect for the future heart health of Australians. We don’t want to see a stalling of the progress we have made in lowering heart disease death rates.”
Needs to be change
Even with restrictions improving, the trend doesn’t seem to be going anywhere.
The Heart Foundation also warns that there has been no drop-off in people speaking to doctors about risk factors and heart health generally.
“Getting your blood pressure and cholesterol checked is an essential part of managing your risk of heart disease. We would urge Australians not to put it off any longer,” advises Mr Stavreski.
“Heart disease is still the nation’s single biggest killer, but it’s fallen off the radar for many Australians.”
To learn more on what people with heart disease should know about Covid-19, click here or call the Helpline 13 11 12.