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September 17, 2020

Data collection, research a must as deaths due to cardiac diseases on the rise in Pakistan: experts

Karachi

September 17, 2020

There is an urgent need to initiate research and collect data on the risk factors and prevailing trends of cardiovascular diseases in Pakistan, as of the 58 per cent deaths caused by non- communicable diseases (NCDs), cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) claim 29 per cent of deaths in the country, leading researchers and cardiologists said on Wednesday.

“We are losing hundreds of thousands of lives annually due to cardiovascular diseases and the burden of CVDs is constantly on the rise in Pakistan. There is a strong need to initiate research, especially by young cardiologists, on the causes, risk factors and prevailing trends of heart diseases in the country,” said Prof Haroon AK Babar, president of the Pakistan Cardiac Society (PCS) after signing a memorandum of understanding (MoU) in Karachi.

The MoU was signed between the Pakistan Cardiac Society (PCS) and the Health Research Advisor Board (HealthRAB) for the 5th Cardiology Research Awards (CRA), which would be presented to three young cardiologists for their research in the field of cardiology. The MoU was signed by Prof Abdul Basit, vice chairman, HealthRAB, and Prof Haroon AK Babar, president, PCS, Dr Zakiuddin Ahmed, general secretary, Health RAB, and Mohsin Ali Sheraz were also present on the occasion.

The CRA is an initiative by HealthRAB, which in collaboration with the PCS, provides a platform to the cardiologists to present their research work and compete with their peers at a national level.

Experts say this competition has fostered the development of the research ecosystem in Pakistan. During this ceremony, Prof Haroon AK Babar stressed the need and importance of research in the field of cardiology in Pakistan, and appreciated HealthRAB and local pharmaceutical firm PharmEvo for their continued support in organising the CRA annually for the last four years.

Prof Babar maintained that the Cardiology Research Award is one of the few platforms in Pakistan motivating the young cardiologists to conduct research. He hoped that the research and data collected by the young cardiologists would help us in saving thousands of people living with cardiac disorders.

Eminent researcher and leading diabetologist Prof Abdul Basit said in his remarks there was a strong need to conduct more researches in Pakistan as they lacked reliable data in almost every field of medicine and surgery in the country.

“HealthRAB is one of the few organisations of the country promoting the culture of research. HealthRAB had received 18 abstracts for the 1st Awards in 2016, and 89 abstracts for the 4th Awards in 2019, which shows the overall success of this project,” he said and encouraged the young cardiologists to take part in the 5th Cardiology Research Award.

Dr Zakiuddin Ahmed said HealthRAB had been conducting the CRA for the last four years and it had become one of the flagship projects of research board.