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28/01/14 10:18

Decrease in heart disease and stroke

Less people dying from two of Scotland’s biggest killers.

Fewer people in Scotland are suffering heart disease and strokes according to new statistics published today.

Figures show that, over the past 10 years:

  • new cases of Coronary Heart Disease (CHD) have decreased by 27.3 per cent
  • new cases of cerebrovascular disease (CVD or stroke) have fallen by 21 per cent

Cabinet Secretary for Health and Wellbeing Alex Neil said:

“These figures show that our strategy for tackling heart disease and stroke is delivering real results for patients.

“It is fantastic that NHSScotland is continuing to make significant cuts in the number of deaths from heart disease and stroke.

“Our Heart Disease and Stroke Action Plan sets out a comprehensive programme for further reducing deaths at whatever age from both heart disease and stroke. The plan focuses not just on providing the best possible care in the acute setting, but in helping people’s longer-term recovery in their own communities.

“Future improvements will largely depend on people’s lifestyles – eating better, being more active, stopping smoking and drinking sensibly. We are taking firm action in all these areas to support people to live healthier lives.”

The figures also show the mortality rate for heart disease has decreased by 43.6 per cent in the last ten years. This reduction in mortality has occurred across all deprivation levels, with the gap between most deprived and least deprived narrowing.

The drop in mortality is believed to be due in part to the increasing use of the less invasive percutaneous coronary interventions known as angioplasties. This is a procedure which is used to widen blocked or narrowed coronary arteries using a balloon to stretch open the artery.

Mortality rates for stroke have also fallen steadily over the last 10 years. The decrease for men in that time has been 45.4 per cent, while deaths for women have decreased 39.2 per cent.

Notes to editors

In 2009, the Scottish Government Heart Disease and Stroke Action Plan set out a three year programme for further reducing deaths at whatever age from both heart disease and stroke. The Heart Disease part the plan is currently being refreshed and will be published later this year.

Stroke continues to be a clinical priority for the Scottish Government. The new Stroke Care Bundle approach, recently introduced, aims to build on the improvement work already underway in NHS Boards, delivering high quality care, safe and effective treatment for people admitted with stroke.

Full statistics on heart disease can be viewed at:

Statistics can be viewed at: