The Heart and Stroke Foundation of Barbados (HSFB) is extremely concerned that the incidence of strokes among Barbadian women are outstripping that among men.
During a press conference at One Welches, St Thomas, Wednesday, where she received a $20,000 sponsorship cheque from Consolidated Finance Co. Limited to assist with the upcoming Different Strokes – The Polo Edition, the foundation’s CEO Michelle Daniel, said research by the Barbados Chronic Disease Research Centre showed that out of the 593 stroke events that occur in Barbados every year, a little more than 55 per cent occur in women.
HSFB’s senior vice-president and fundraising committee chair Ena Harvey noted that in light of women suffering from more strokes more than men, the foundation was currently planning an event for July to educate women about cardiac disease prevention and rehabilitation.
The Heart of a Woman project will consist of a public symposium and a trade show for health professionals, to empower women in matters relating to their health.
“We are very concerned and we are acting on it. I am not a medical doctor so I would not prevail and give medical advice. But at the foundation we are extremely concerned. People don’t even recognize when somebody is having a stroke, and younger and younger people are having strokes.
“Women tend to present differently to men when having a heart attack. So when they go to hospitals, they are not treated with the type of urgent care,” Harvey said.
She said that women engage in busy lifestyles that often cause them to ignore their overall care and symptoms associated with health-related complications.
“So it is out of all of that concern that we are training health professionals to continue medical education. We are training the general public how to recognize signs of a stroke. We are training the public about the risk factors and about eating right, exercising, de-stressing, finding family time, and cutting down on smoking and cutting down on alcohol use, all the things that lead to physiological impact,” Harvey said.