Calling for standards in cardiology data collection and analysis

Cork, Ireland, 10 May 2004: The Irish Minister for Health and Children, Michael Martin TD, today opened the European meeting on Cardiology Audit and Registration Data Standards (CARDS) in Cork, Ireland, by calling for consistency across Europe in terms of data collection and analysis in cardiology.

With cardiovascular disease highlighted by the Irish Department of Health and Children as a priority during the Irish Presidency of the European Union, the CARDS meeting is the latest in a series of initiatives to address the growing problem of cardiovascular disease in Europe. This topic is especially pertinent with the recent addition of the Accession States to the European Union, many of which have particular challenges in this area of public health.

Michael Martin TD states, "The European Union provides an ideal forum for Member States to discuss and agree areas of common concern. In health, a key area of commonality is cardiovascular disease Europe's most prolific killer and largest cause of illness".

Mr Martin continues, "While existing cardiology databases share similar aims, there is no European agreement on which variables to collect in specific service locations and no agreed definitions for most of the data fields. As a consequence, the important benefits of collation and comparison of data from different sources are lost. This CARDS conference sets out to agree European data standards, to provide a basis for the collection of comparable data in cardiology databases and registries".

The European Society of Cardiology (ESC) is one of the key partners in the CARDS meeting and initiative, drawing upon its experience and network as a professional association of 47 National Cardiac Societies across central and greater Europe.

At the CARDS meeting, the ESC has been invited to present its Euro Heart Survey as a case study of a successful pan-European survey programme enabling local, national and international comparisons

Contact: Camilla Dormer or Sophie O'Kelly
European Society of Cardiology

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