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.
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.