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Hush…..A Deadly Killer on the Prowl in Rural Andhra Pradesh

If this bit of news sent you into an instant cardio-vascular work out, with racing beats, rural Andhra’s sons of the soil and the rest, who probably don’t engage// in heart healthy practices, are fast becoming a symbol of unenviable heart ill health. This region portraying a high incidence of cardiovascular disease has raised the concern amongst International Health bodies.

A major health initiative is taking shape under the name ‘Andhra Pradesh Rural Health Initiative’ – APRHI, which is an outfit born out of the combined forces of National and International health research experts from the George Institute for International Health and The University of Queensland in Australia, the Byrraju Foundation, the Centre for Chronic Disease Control (CCDC) and the CARE Foundation in India, who are meeting to thrash out the main problem of cardiovascular disease in the region.

Founded in 2003, the APRHI group has strived to bring remedy to health problems plaguing the region and evolve measures to rise above them. Nearly 180162 people spread over 45 villages in East and West Godavari districts of Andhra Pradesh were involved in the pilot study. Research initiated in the last two years has clearly indicated the evidence of cardiovascular diseases being responsible for a large number of deaths in the region, and relegating the deaths from communicable disease like Malaria and childhood infections, to relatively few.

The WHO report, paints an extremely somber picture of cardiovascular diseases in India having claimed more than 250 lives per 100,000 deaths, which has dealt a strong blow to the Indian economy as well.

Dr Bruce Neal of The George Institute for International Health said, “Today’s meeting is a great opportunity and a platform to move research forward in presence of global health experts. Having current and reliable data about causes of death and disease is a prerequisite for the best use of scarce health care resources. It is our endeavor to provide information and action on the research carried our by APRHI and build a strong action plan to combat the deadly situation prevailing in rural Andhra Pradesh and India. Going ahead in Geroge Institute’s endeavor and commitment towards the research in rural India, we would like to start our office in Hyderabad within the next twelve months.”

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