The American Heart Association and the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origins  plan to work together to increase heart attack and stroke awareness, improve resuscitation training and save more lives, both in India and among Indian doctors in the U.S.

The collaboration calls for programs in Indian and U.S. communities to increase heart attack and stroke awareness.  It also will introduce the AHA’s resuscitation science curriculum — including basic, advanced and pediatric life support training — to all Indian medical colleges and develop more instructors to deliver the training. This will foster the use of science-based recommendations for treating life-threatening medical emergencies such as cardiac arrest, according to the AHA.

“Heart Disease and Stroke are not limited by geographical boundaries. Neither are our efforts to prevent them,” said Vemuri Murthy, M.D., chair of the AHA/AAPI liaison committee and an AHA volunteer. “An exchange of ideas between researchers and clinicians helps in streamlining the path from science to practice and improves access to quality healthcare regardless of where the patients live.”

Heart diseases have emerged as the No. 1 killer in India, according to a study by the Registrar General of India and Indian Council of Medical Research. With more than 1.2 billion people, India is estimated to produce 60 percent of heart disease patients worldwide in the near future.

The groups signed a letter of intent and will have their first meeting in Dallas at the AHA’s Scientific Sessions conference in November. AHA and AAPI leaders also will meet at the January 2014  AAPI global health summit in Ahmedabad, India.

The effort supports the AHA’s mission to reduce disability and death from cardiovascular diseases and stroke and its efforts to deliver emergency cardiovascular care training beyond U.S. borders. The AHA develops medical resuscitation guidelines and training materials that are used worldwide.

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