The Burden of Stroke in Europe Report now in Greek language

The Burden of Stroke in Europe Report now in Greek language

Conducted by King’s College London on behalf of SAFE in May 2017, the Burden of Stroke Report has now been translated into Greek language. Manuscript translation editing was done by Hariklia Proios, PhD CCC-SLP,  Ast. Professor of neurocognitive sciences and rehabilitation, Anna Tsiakiri, PhD Psychologist, Aikaterini Kiriakidou, MD Special Neurologist, Konstantinos Charalampopoulos, MD PhD Special Neurologist and Kalliopi Tsakpounidou, MSc PhD Candidate.

The book will be distributed to the public by the H.N.S.-Hellenic Neurological Society (H.N.S.), the Hellenic Neuropsychological Society (H.NP.S.), the Hellenic Society of Vascular and Endovascular surgery (H.S.V.S.) and the Hellenic (Greek) Stroke Society (Hellenic Society of Cerebrovascular Diseases).

It was presented for the first time in August 31st, 2018, in the board meeting of SAFE in Grand Hotel Palace in Thessaloniki, Greece and will be published by EKDOSEIS GUTENBERG, Printing & Publishing Company – Athens. The aim of the publication is to inform Greek society about the burden of stroke and decrease the rate of this health emergency.

SAFE launches a website for stroke prevention

SAFE launches a website for stroke prevention

Reliable, easy to use information on 10 modifiable stroke risk factors all in one place:

Brussels, 17/09/2018: A SAFE-owned website on stroke prevention and modifiable stroke risk factors goes live today at
“We know from the INTERSTROKE study that 10 modifiable risk factors are responsible for 90% of strokes. Our goal is to increase awareness and behaviour change by creating an online resource that will collate all relevant information on the most common risk factors such as: hypertension, physical activity, diet, obesity, smoking, cholesterol, heart disease, alcohol, stress and diabetes.”- said Jon Barrick, the President of SAFE.

This website is a platform which contains all the relevant information on stroke risk factors in an easy and simple format for a range of audiences. All information presented here are in a form appropriate for people with busy lifestyles, unable to digest too much detail at one time, as well as people with disabilities.

Prior to developing this website, our research showed that it was difficult to find consistent and coherent information about stroke prevention in one place online. The problem is that the information is spread across a vast range of different locations: websites, blogs, news portals and e- documents. In addition, many of them are not in a format appropriate for people with disabilities, for example sight impairment.

Note: This website is developed and owned by Stroke Alliance for Europe – SAFE, supported by an educational grant from AMGEN. SAFE retains full editorial control over the content of this website.

About SAFE

The Stroke Alliance for Europe (SAFE) a non-profit-making organisation formed in 2004. It is the voice of stroke patients in Europe, representing a range of patient groups from 30 European countries. SAFE’s goal is to decrease the number of strokes in Europe by advocating for better prevention, access to adequate treatment, post-stroke care and rehabilitation.
For more information about SSOFT and SAFE, please visit

About Amgen

Amgen is committed to unlocking the potential of biology for patients suffering from serious illnesses by discovering, developing, manufacturing and delivering innovative human therapeutics. This approach begins by using tools like advanced human genetics to unravel the complexities of disease and understand the fundamentals of human biology. Amgen focuses on areas of high unmet medical need and leverages its expertise to strive for solutions that improve health outcomes and dramatically improve people’s lives. A biotechnology pioneer since 1980, Amgen has grown to be one of the world’s leading independent biotechnology companies, has reached millions of patients around the world and is developing a pipeline of medicines with breakaway potential.
In May 2018, Amgen received European Commission approval for Repatha® (evolocumab) to prevent heart attack and stroke in adults with established cardiovascular disease.
For more information, visit and follow


Why is sitting bad for you? Irish Heart Foundation just launched an innovative campaign #ChairsCanKill

Why is sitting bad for you? Irish Heart Foundation just launched an innovative campaign #ChairsCanKill

The content below was published by Irish Heart Foundation

Irish Heart Foundation launched a “Chairs Can Kill” campaign this week which hoping to help everybody in Ireland sit less and reduce their risk of heart disease and stroke. But why is sitting bad for us?

Recent research has found that sitting for prolonged periods can have a serious effect on our heart health, regardless of whether or not we are exercising [1]. Here comes the science bit: the body needs energy to stand, so to provide this, enzymes in the leg muscles capture fat from the blood to be used for fuel. When you sit for long periods of time the fat is not captured, so it remains in the blood, increasing your risk of heart disease and stroke. Sitting for long periods of time has also been shown to significantly reduce the level of HDL or good cholesterol, in your blood and this too increases your risk of heart disease and stroke [2].

Here are some general tips to help you reduce your sitting time and reduce your risk of heart disease and stroke.

General tips:

Tip 1: Track how long you sit – Do you know just how long you sit for? Use our calculator on
Tip 2: Set a goal- Try and reduce the amount of time you spend seated. Set a realistic goal.
Tip 3: Break the habit- Why not stand when you can? Be aware of why and when you sit and try to break the habit.

The Irish Heart Foundation has developed a sitting time calculator to help you calculate just how many hours a day you spend sitting down. You can access the calculator here. Also, download our campaign poster and this week’s infographic here to help spread the word.

In addition, why not share the results of your sitting time calculator and see how you can reduce this over the next four weeks of the campaign. Challenge your colleagues to a ‘sit less competition’ and see who manages to reduce their sitting time the most by the end of the campaign. Make sure to let us know how you are reducing your sitting time throughout the month. You can show your support for the campaign by sharing videos and pictures on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn using #chairscankill.

[1] Biswas et al., 2015 (doi: 10.7326/M14-1651)
[2] Kravitz, L. (2009) (

New Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) research looks at stroke prevention in 11 European countries

New Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) research looks at stroke prevention in 11 European countries

Atrial fibrillation (AF) is an abnormal heart rhythm with rapid and irregular beating. It is estimated to increase the risk of stroke 3 to 5-fold and to be associated with around a quarter of all ischaemic strokes. Additionally, AF is associated with more severe strokes leading to higher mortality and disability.

With support from the BMS-Pfizer Alliance, The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU), London, UK published a new sub-analysis that assessed how 11 EU countries (Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Russia, Spain, Sweden, Turkey and the United Kingdom) compare against European Society of Cardiology’s recommendations for stroke prevention and #AFib detection. This sub-analysis was published in the “Risk Management and Healthcare Policy” journal.

AF is often asymptomatic and screening is not routinely undertaken in Europe. Accurate information on its prevalence in the general population is therefore not widely available. Some European countries have undertaken screening studies to estimate the proportion of the population affected. They reported rates in the general population ranging from 1.3% (UK, Italy) to 3.9% (Greece), with rates being highly dependent on age. Less data is available from Central and Eastern European countries.

Due to Europe’s ageing population and AF’s strong association with age (0.7% in those aged 55-59 vs. 17.8% in those aged ≥85 years), the prevalence of AF is expected to rise. Using data from the community based Rotterdam Study and population projections from Eurostat, it was estimated that the number of adults over 55 with AF will more than double between 2010 and 2060 from 8.8 million to 17.9 million[117]. An Icelandic study projected the prevalence of AF to rise from 1.9% in 2008 to 3.5% in 2050. (Source: Burden of Stroke Report, 2017)

As stated in the Abstract of this sub-study, all 11 participating countries were found to have policies in place to manage general behavioral risk factors of noncommunicable diseases (NCD), but it was found that more needs to be done to address cardiovascular disease – specifically, stroke risk factors. Although ten of the countries in this study endorse the ESC cardiovascular clinical guidelines, implementation is lacking. Eight out of the 11 countries received the lowest score in regard to raising awareness around stroke, and 7 countries were found not to have a stroke registry. Among physicians surveyed in primary care it was reported that less than 30% of patients over 40 years old were screened for blood pressure, whereas even fewer were screened for atrial fibrillation; in 10 out of the 11 countries, less than 20% of patients over 65 years old were screened for atrial fibrillation.

The findings revealed opportunities for improvement in the primary prevention of stroke which should not be ignored, having in mind that the prevalence of AF is expected to rise significantly over the next few decades.




EPF Webinar: Transparent Advocacy in Patient Organisations- 14 September 2018

EPF Webinar: Transparent Advocacy in Patient Organisations- 14 September 2018

Following the publication of EPF’s Transparency Guidelines, European Patients Forum would like to invite you to join a webinar to discuss transparent advocacy in patient organisations.

Health advocacy and lobbying is at the heart of the work of many patient organisations (whether it is local, national or European). Their mission statement often includes promoting a political, regulatory, and societal environment that are more patient-centred.

This means that patient organisations engage in lobbying activities on a regular basis. They do so by contributing the specific perspective of patients and people with chronic conditions to legislative processes, but also by pushing for the recognition and for actions on topics that are not yet necessarily on the political agenda (proactive advocacy). Thanks to Vitor Teixeira from Transparency International, the EPF will share with you the benefits of transparency and advocacy as well as a few practical tips on how to enhance your transparency in advocacy activities.

Practical information

Date: Friday 14th September 2018

Time: 15.30-16.15 CEST

How to register?

Register via this link, by 12 September at the latest. Please note that you will need a strong internet connection to fully enjoy the webinar.

And if I can’t make it?

If you can’t make it at the time of the live webinar, no worries! The webinar will be recorded and made available on EPF website.

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