The European Heart Valve Disease Day focuses on four key aspects to improve diagnosis and access to treatment across Europe. The focus areas are summarised in the 4 A action plan:

1.

Awareness

Call upon governments, scientific societies and industry to collaborate with patient organisations to run national campaigns to raise awareness of the signs, symptoms and diagnosis of heart valve disease. As a result, elderly people, their health care providers and caregivers will be more aware of heart valve disease and its symptoms and join the campaign.

2.

Ask

Call upon governments and national payors to promote and eventually fund a check for heart valve disease as part of annual health check for over 65s, so that these people have the right to ask for a stethoscope check at least once a year.

3.

Action

Call upon healthcare authorities to put in place national heart valve disease guidelines with a clear treatment pathway from diagnosis to treatment which physicians can use as a decision-making protocol.

4.

Access

Call upon national healthcare providers to provide wide and equal access to heart valve disease therapies which provide the best and most rapid return to a good quality of life.