In general, few people are aware of Congenital Heart Disease (CHD) - what it is and how serious a problem it is.
Many people would remember the term “Blue Baby” and “Hole in the Heart Baby” – these are conditions that describe CHD which, in reality, covers a wide range of conditions. At HeartKids, we also include children who may acquire heart conditions such as Rheumatic Fever and Kawasaki’s Disease – therefore we often refer to CHD as meaning Childhood Heart Disease.
Some startling statistics:
- Every day, 6 babies are born with heart defects. That is over 2000 every year!
- CHD is one of the greatest killers of infants under the age of one.
- Approx half of children diagnosed with heart disease require surgery to correct the defect,
- Each week more than 4 Australians pass away as a result of a Congenital Heart condition.
- It is estimated that 32,000 children (under 18 years of age) are currently living with CHD in Australia.
- Some children acquire heart conditions during childhood, e.g. cardiomyopathy, Kawasaki disease or as a result of rheumatic fever.
- A disproportionate number of indigenous children suffer from acquired heart disease – often as a result of rheumatic fever, which is prevalent in many communities.
We at HeartKids are striving to increase awareness of CHD through various campaign and advocacy programmes.
February is International CHD Awareness Month….. CHD is a global issue! Please watch the media and this site for events.
February 14th, while most people will recognise this date as St Valentine’s Day – it is also International CHD Awareness Day, so why not donate to HeartKids instead of buying those roses!