Leinster and Ireland hooker Bernard Jackman paid a visit to the Cardio Clinic at the Vista Primary Care Centre in Naas, Co. Kildare recently to help promote Heart Health…

Bernard was on hand in order to create greater awareness of heart health and to help launch Happy Heart Weekend which runs from the 14th – 16th May and met with leading Irish Cardiologist, Professor Ken McDonald at the Cardio Clinic and posed for photographs while he underwent an Exercise Stress Test.

The Cardio Clinic at the Vista Primary Care Campus in Naas, Co. Kildare is Ireland’s first dedicated heart clinic in a primary care setting. It’s primary focus is the non invasive cardiac screening of patients at the earliest opportunity, in order to diagnose serious cardiac problems or heart disease. The clinic also specialises in heart failure prevention.

The Cardio Clinic is run by a multi-disciplinary team of cardiac professionals, including consultant cardiologists, clinical physiologists, nursing and administrative staff; and appointment is by GP referral only. The services available at the clinic include Echocardiography, Electrocardiography, Exercise Stress Testing, 24 Hour Blood Pressure Monitoring, Holter Monitoring, and B–Type Natriuretic Peptide (BNP) Test.

According to Prof. Ken McDonald, one of the Clinic’s directors, “The timely access to out of hospital cardiac investigations can facilitate accurate diagnosis, optimise patient management and therefore prevent emergency referrals and, of course, because of its primary care setting, the often associated log-jams are avoided”.

The services on offer at the clinic offer the highest level of quality and professionalism. The facilities are modern, relaxing and clinically reassuring. Access to a member of the consultant cardiologist team is extremely swift and results are delivered back to your GP promptly.

According to the Irish Heart Foundation approximately 10,000 people die each year in Ireland from cardiovascular disease (CVD) – including coronary heart disease (CHD), stroke and other circulatory diseases. CVD is the most common cause of death in Ireland, accounting for 36% of all deaths. The largest number of these deaths relate to CHD – mainly heart attack – at 5,000. 22% of premature deaths (under age 65) are from CVD. While a healthy diet and regular exercise are critical to reducing these statistics, early diagnosis of heart related issues can avert the condition from escalating in the first place.

Happy Heart Weekend is a national campaign which will run from the 14th – 16th May. For further details on the Cardio Clinic log on to www.thecardioclinic.ie or call (045) 983118. Information on the Irish Heart Foundation’s Happy Heart Weekend can be found on www.irishheart.ie