Cardiovascular diseases take almost 18 million lives per year, with three-quarters of these deaths occurring in low- and middle-income countries. The emergence of cardiovascular diseases as a key risk factor for COVID-19 complications is yet another reason for urgently addressing heart health at the population level.
The Novartis Foundation is working with the governments of São Paulo, Brazil, and Dakar, Senegal, on the population health approach to cardiovascular disease. New city partners will be announced in 2021. Population health approaches prioritize reducing health inequalities, promoting partnerships and public health initiatives, and maximizing the application of technology to strengthen health systems.
The Novartis Foundation built its approach to improving cardiovascular health in urban populations on evidence and tools from Better Hearts Better Cities. This initiative developed powerful proof for how cities can improve cardiovascular health in their populations – improving health outcomes dramatically after just 18-24 months of implementation. We achieved this by combining resources and expertise from multidisciplinary partners, gathered behind the single agenda of improving population health, and monitoring progress against precise measurable targets.