Home News Prioritize development of sporting activities in communities – GSC

Prioritize development of sporting activities in communities – GSC

Ksi Health Cardiologists Meeting

The Ghanaian Society of Cardiology (GSC) has called on the government to as a matter of urgency initiate pragmatic policies to promote the development of sporting and recreational facilities in communities across the country.

This, according to the Society, would help increase access to these facilities and help many people to undertake regular exercises to reduce the increasing spate of cardiovascular diseases, especially among the youth in the country.

Dr Alfred Doku, President of GSC, who made the call, said it was important for the Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies to enforce bylaws which allowed for spaces to be created for recreational and sporting activities, especially in the newly developed and peri-urban communities.

Speaking at the 5th annual general and scientific meeting of the GSC in Kumasi, Dr Doku said it was important to manage the rapid rural-urban migration and its subsequent congestions in the cities to help protect the health of the people.

He said though urbanisation might have some positive effects, the current uncontrolled physical development had brought a lot of challenges as far as cardiovascular health was concerned.

According to him, as a result of urbanisation, people had to spend a lot of time in vehicular traffic before accessing health facilities and said this could prove fatal during emergencies.

Besides that, a lot of people do not have access to sporting facilities and fun parks in their communities to enable them to exercise or to have fun and release stress.

Dr Doku noted that it was very important to bring these facilities closer to the people to ease access and encourage regular exercises and health checks among the people

This year’s meeting was held under the theme ‘Gender and Cardiovascular Health’

Dr Doku pointed out that, although cardiovascular disease affected both men and women, “men tend to die more from cardiovascular diseases especially in Africa; because the health seeking behaviour of men is greatly low.”

He said 70 per cent of out patients’ attendance in most health care facilities were women or children and about 20 to 30 per cent were men.

“Men are likely to detect cardiovascular disease quite late primarily because they are not diagnosed with hypertension early and they tend to have stroke and heart diseases, which, usually is an advanced state.

Even when it comes to the management, women are more compliant as they are more likely to take their medication than women,” he said.

Notwithstanding their better health seeking behaviour, he said it was more difficult in diagnosing cardiovascular diseases in women due to the nonspecific presentation.

“When a woman has cardiovascular disease or heart attack, the presentation is a bit different.
Women tend to present nonspecific chest pain, difficulty in breathing.

So, the diagnosis becomes a bit difficult in women but in men, it is usually a bit easier,” he stated.

Globally, he said, over 19 million people die from cardiovascular diseases which was the third cause of death in the world and in Africa, cardiovascular disease was the main cause of death.

“When you come to Ghana, the first and second causes of death, that is stroke and heart diseases are the leading causes,” Dr Doku revealed.

He said early detection could save lives and urged all to lead healthy lifestyles, regularly go for medical check-ups to know their status before it was too late.

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