‘Heart Smart’ is a community based initiative targeting individuals at high–risk of developing heart disease.
What is Heart Smart?
‘Heart Smart’ aims to empower individuals to make lifestyle and behaviour modifications, that will help reduce their risk of developing cardiovascular disease. It involves an assessment of the risk factors for heart disease including cholesterol, blood pressure, glucose, BMI as well as lifestyle risk factors. The results are recorded on a personal record card and are explained and discussed with the individual.
Lifestyle advice is given using techniques of motivational interviewing and individuals are encouraged to set goals and objectives for change. All participants with elevated risk factors are referred to their GP and are invited to return for a 6 month ‘Heart Smart’ follow up.
To date, over 2,400 people have been targeted through the ‘Heart Smart’ programme. The programme, which has been running for the past 3 years, has demonstrated significant results in terms of lifestyle changes and reductions to cholesterol and blood pressure. In fact, so compelling are the findings that a two year report of the programme has just been published.
The ‘Heart Smart’ programme is the only primary prevention initiative of its kind that has gone into the community to target those most at risk of developing heart disease. It recognises that the community and the workplace are natural environments in which to target and engage with individuals in promoting a healthier lifestyle. The programme has not been developed to offer an alternative service to that of the GP but more to assess if novel approaches to cardiovascular disease prevention are feasible and effective.
We believe that a more extensive roll out of the programme and a multidisciplinary team approach to Cardiovascular Disease (CVD) Prevention could offer huge opportunities for the future.
For further information on HeartSmart contact the Croí Heart Health Centre on:
Tel – 091-893500