Health and Spirit
As many as 1 in 100 black men and women develop heart failure before the age of 50, 20 times the rate in whites in this age group, according to new findings from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) of the National Institutes of Health. In the study, heart failure developed in black participants at an average age of 39, often preceded by risk factors such as high blood pressure, obesity, and chronic kidney disease 10 to 20 years earlier.
Greater Diversity News’ Heart Disease Special Publication Click Here to Download Special Edition
What is Heart Disease and Why Does it Occur? Coronary heart disease is the most common form of heart disease. It is a disorder of the blood vessels of the heart that can lead to heart attack. A heart attack occurs when an artery becomes blocked, preventing oxygen and nutrients from getting to the heart.
In the United States, heart disease is the leading killer among most ethnic groups. Three years ago, over a quarter of all deaths in the U.S. were attributed to heart disease. The Office of Minority Health says that African American men are 30 percent more likely to die from heart disease than white males.
Health care. It’s a phrase that conjures anxiety, confusion and frustration in our region and across our nation. And with just cause. As Americans, we spend twice as much on health care as residents of other developed countries, yet our health care system is plagued by poor quality, especially in the treatment of chronic diseases that affect millions of Americans. Within the next decade, we’ll begin spending more on health care – nearly one dollar in every five – than we do on the entire federal government today.
This year the U. S. Conference on AIDS (USCA), the largest HIV/AIDS gathering in the nation, targeted its offerings toward men who have sex with men. But during the meeting sponsored by the National Minority AIDS Council, many Black women--from prevention and policy experts to those living with HIV/AIDS--aggressively pursued programming and issues that focused on their demographic.
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