According to recent study, conducted at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) and Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), over 50 per cent of the cardiac or stroke deaths reported in India are due to delay in seeking care. The study, first of its kind study based on community, has been published in the journal Lancet.
The study said stated that only a small number of patients with cardiac and stroke emergencies reach health facilities early.
“Lack of timely care is a predictor of poor outcomes in acute cardiovascular emergencies including stroke. We assessed the presence of delay in seeking appropriate care among those who died due to cardiac/stroke emergencies in a community in northern India,” said Anand Krishnan, correspondence author, Centre for Community Medicine, AIIMS, in the study.
Only 10.8 per cent of those who died reached appropriate health facility
According to the findings of the study, only 10.8 per cent of those who died because of heart-related problems reached an appropriate health facility within one hour.
“Delayed presentation leads to delay or failure to provide the most beneficial therapies like thrombolysis for myocardial infarction/ischemic stroke leading to poorer disease outcomes. It is estimated that interventions that reduce delays in care in patients with myocardial infarction (MI) could decrease risk of mortality by 30 per cent,” the study showed.
“The inability to recognise the severity of illness and financial constraints were identified as major reasons for the delays in seeking care,” Krishnan said.
Study was conducted in Badkhal and Ballabgarh
Two out of three tehsils of Faridabad district of Haryana was part of the study. The study was conducted in Badkhal and Ballabgarh. As part of the study, the team conducted a social audit among all civil-registered premature deaths among patients aged between 30 and 69 years due to acute cardiac events or stroke in the district.
It was found in the study that around half of the deceased did not visit any health facility during their terminal illness and only one in ten subjects reached an appropriate health facility within the first hour after onset of the symptoms.