- Ian Sheerin
Supported by the Rural Canterbury Primary Health Organisation and the Heart Foundation
Recently, the New Zealand Guidelines Group published guidelines for screening and management of cardiovascular risk in general practice. The Canterbury District Health Board has identified cardiovascular disease (CVD) as high priority and wishes to investigate a screening programme in general practice. The records of three general practices in Canterbury were audited to identify people with known cardiovascular disease (CVD). The project is providing data that will assist in estimating community prevalence by age and gender, which will inform decisions on public health programmes. This includes both medical and lifestyle data such as blood pressure, lipids, obesity, diabetes, smoking, family history and physical activity. The research is also identifying problems with the type of information that is collected routinely in general practice, including gaps in important information needed to assess cardiovascular risk and in computerised information systems.