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Dublin: 18 °C Saturday 8 August, 2020
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More than 100k people diagnosed with stroke or coronary heart disease in 2012

Irish Heart Foundation is hoping to raise €500,000 in May of this year with their Happy Hearts Appeal.

Una Crawford O'Brien, Jen Dawson (Tullow, Co. Carlow) and Bryan Murray at the launch of May's Happy Hearts Appeal in Dublin.
Una Crawford O'Brien, Jen Dawson (Tullow, Co. Carlow) and Bryan Murray at the launch of May's Happy Hearts Appeal in Dublin.
Image: Mark Stedman/Photocall Ireland

THE LEVEL OF heart disease in Ireland came under the spotlight yesterday when the Irish Heart Foundation launched their latest charity drive with some stark statistics.

The chief executive of the Irish Heart Foundation, Barry Dempsey, said that in addition to the almost 10,000 deaths in Ireland as a result of heart disease and stroke each year, chronic illnesses account for a much greater number.

“In 2012, more than 100,000 people were clinically diagnosed with stroke or coronary heart disease within the previous 12 months,” he said. “That’s 273 diagnoses every day – enough to fill two and a half double decker buses.”

The May Happy Heart appeal, which is taking place between 9-11 May, is hoping to raise €500,000 which will go towards its patient information and support services, in addition to its research and resuscitation programmes.

Speaking at the launch, Fair City actor Bryan Murray said that the charity, and their message, was all about “helping everyone to live longer.”

“We all know somebody affected by heart disease and stroke. But the good news is that 80 per cent of premature heart disease is preventable,” he said.

Survivor

In attendance at the launch was heart attack survivor and volunteer Antoinette Crehan. Having heard the symptoms of a non-typical heart attack described to her at the launch in 2010, Crehan found herself experiencing the symptoms first-hand months later.

Believing that she now owes her life to the Irish Heart Foundation, Crehan said that she appreciates “how important it is to have access to information and support and how the money raised by volunteers just like me, really does make a difference – it helps people.”

Read: Gorta urges vigilance against bogus charity collectors >

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Paul Hyland

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