As we celebrate World Heart Day today and focus on improving awareness, prevention and management of cardiovascular disease globally, we should also remember that innovative medical interventions have vastly improved cardiovascular disease outcomes.
We know this from our own work here at the National Pharmaceutical Council (NPC). In 2019, Health Affairs published research from NPC and RTI Health Solutions that looked at whether medical intervention spending on prevalent conditions has been a good investment over time. The answer was a resounding yes.
In examining spending for seven prevalent chronic conditions from 1995-2015, the study found that in six out of the seven conditions that were analyzed – including ischemic heart disease – increased health care spending on medical interventions led to improved patient outcomes. For ischemic heart disease specifically, increased health spending resulted in improved health, as measured by a decrease of 1.89 disability-adjusted life years, while also reducing per person health care costs by 56.9%.
These findings reiterate the importance of taking stock of our health care resource investments to know what truly works to benefit patients. It is vital that we ensure more innovations be available to them in the future. Therefore, as we unite today to spread awareness about cardiovascular disease, let’s not lose sight of the impact innovation has and will have in fighting the world’s No. 1 killer.