Canadian Journal of Cardiology

Charting the Course for Women's Heart Health in Canada: Recommendations From the First Canadian Women's Heart Health Summit

      Cardiovascular disease (CVD) remains a leading cause of death among Canadian women, and many are oblivious to this reality. Sex and gender differences and disparities exist with respect to its development, identification, and treatment. In April, 2016 the Canadian Women's Heart Health Centre in partnership with the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada hosted the first Canadian Women's Heart Health Summit in order to identify strategies to address the challenge of heart disease among women in Canada. The goal of the Summit was to establish a direction for Canadian women's heart health by stimulating dialogue among engaged professionals and to devise collaborative strategies to reduce sex- and gender-disparities in CVD prevention and management. A “Call to Action” meeting followed the Summit and generated a consensus list of priority areas for action. Recommendations included the creation of a “Women's Heart Health Alliance” network to establish best practices in care; the development of a formal research network, a specific research agenda, and approaches to prioritize research funding; the identification of centres of excellence; advocacy for the development of appropriate health policy and programmes to increase awareness among care givers and the public; the transformation of clinical practice through knowledge translation, the development and application of female-specific risk screening tools; and, the creation of new models of care for women.
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