One Week until Valve Week
We are less than five days away for the beginning of the European Heart Valve Disease Awareness Week and are partner organisations are busy putting final touches to their events. You can learn more about the activities taking place here.
European Heart Valve Disease Awareness Week is a tremendously important initiative and this year innovation has been more important than ever. “With approximately 1o million people over the age of 65 currently affected by heart valve disease in Europe, and with the number of people in this age bracket set to significantly increase over the coming years, how we test, trial and take up new technological innovation will be more important than ever,” said Chris Young, Chairman of Heart Valve Voice and surgeon from St Thomas’ Hospital, London
Patients are reaping the benefits of these innovative procedures and devices, like Geoffrey Pritchard, who received a new innovative mitral valve device through minimally invasive surgery, meaning Geoffrey was out of the hospital and back on the golf course in no time. Geoffrey, 76, was the first in the UK to receive the new device and is doing better than ever, “I’m really grateful that I was able to receive this minimally invasive procedure as opposed to open heart surgery,” said Geoffrey. “Not only did I recover quickly, but I can only imagine the cost savings of having patients like me in and out of treatment so quickly and feeling almost instantly better. It’s a shame all patients aren’t provided with this option.”
Unfortunately access to innovation in healthcare is still an issue in parts of Europe, often short-sighted budget decisions leave little room for the introduction of innovative procedures and devices preventing patients from getting the best treatment options available.
“It is wonderful to see initiatives like the European Heart Valve Disease Awareness Week promoting innovation in healthcare,” said Keith Pearce, President of the British Society of Echocardiography. “While some parts of Europe are leading the way in innovation and heart valve disease treatment, the same can’t be said for everywhere. We need to ensure that there is more awareness about the need for timely and effective diagnosis for patients across Europe so they can get the treatments they deserve.”