A group of diseases that affects the heart, blood flow and circulatory system are defined as cardiovascular diseases(CVD). The common types of CVD are: Coronary heart disease, Stroke, Heart failure, high blood pressure
Cardiovascular health is affected by extensive smoking, leading sedentary lifestyle, malnutrition, alcoholism, obesity and having diabetes or chronic kidney disease.
Statically, CVD is more prevalent among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people than non-Indigenous population. A survey conducted by Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health survey (AATSIHS) during 2012-2013, showed 13% had at least one form of CVD. A major cause of this is smoking tobacco and alcoholism. The target demographic is constantly under societal pressure and suffer bad mental health for which they succumb to substance abuse. Indigenous islander women are constantly facing racial, societal and domestic subservience for which they are more likely to take up smoking and alcoholism which leads to increased susceptibility to cardiac diseases than men which affect propagation of the future generation of this community.
Low income has forced majority of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to live in secluded remote areas where is it much more difficult to receive medical care in emergency or otherwise which increases likelihood to develop CVD than those living in metropolitans. Statistical data have shown CVD was twice as more prevalent for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people than for non-Indigenous people. CVD was the leading cause of death among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people from 2010-2014. The imbalance of ratio in CVD death cases between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and non-Indigenous people decreased subsequently between 1998 and 2014.
A report of 2010-12 showed that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people of the age group of 35-44 years were 10 times more susceptible to die from coronary heart disease than non-Indigenous people of the same age group. The difference in health and lifestyle of the two population subsets have led to the development of Close-The-Gap Foundation.
Close the Gap Foundation
The Australian Government along with major human welfare societies various human rights associations have come together to start the Close-The-Gap Campaign. This purpose of this campaign is to curb the imbalance between indigenous and non-Indigenous population. Provide better healthcare for both population and ensure better living and better future. They have a target till 2030 to ensure equal health and living rights be provided to every person born in Aboriginal and Torres Strait
According to the 2016 report of AIHW a lot of progress has been made in this sector and substantial increase of life expectancy, proper hygiene, health, decrease of heart diseases, access to health benefits have been achieved.
Inhabitants of the younger age group of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander are more likely to die from CVD than non-Indigenous people, since the majority of the Indigenous population are of that age group, so the primary concern of the organisations is to educate the younger population and create awareness. The organising body is working hard to provide better healthcare and accessibility to medical camps by developing better transport in remote areas. Proper nutrition, awareness, education should be the main and long term object of the Close-The-Gap foundation. They are more focused to address the issue of fighting the problem internally. providing external catalyst for a better lifestyle is not enough to solve a problem like this. The indigenous people have to be educated properly so that they are able to mould their thought and have self-determination so as to protect their own community.