Addressing the vulnerability of people with cardiovascular disease and comorbidities to COVID-19

Cardiovascular disease is the world’s leading cause of mortality.1 Those living with cardiovascular disease also often have co-morbidities such as diabetes.2 With so many people impacted by cardiovascular disease and its co-morbidities, it’s hard to think patients could be more vulnerable. But right now, they are.

Over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s become clear that certain people are at higher risk from the devastating impacts of COVID-19. This includes people with cardiovascular disease, heart failure, and diabetes3—groups of people with serious, often life-threatening conditions that without proper management can have detrimental consequences.

The pandemic may leave these people unsure of how to manage their disease—who to see, when and whether to visit the doctor, or worse—whether to go to the emergency department.4,5 The overwhelming influx of information is leaving those most vulnerable to COVID-19 confused and insecure, potentially further escalating their risk.

To support those most vulnerable during the COVID-19 pandemic, the World Heart Federation has developed the digital ‘Use Your Heart’ campaign. The campaign calls on everyone to ‘Use heart to fight COVID-19’ by following advice on how to protect yourself, your loved ones and the most vulnerable in society during the crisis.


People with cardiovascular disease are at risk of developing severe COVID-19. The World Heart Federation Use Your Heart campaign aims to increase awareness of this and of the need for individuals affected by heart disease, stroke, diabetes, heart failure and obesity to take extra steps to protect themselves. We’re delighted to have the support of AstraZeneca to ensure that we reach patients with cardiovascular disease and associated conditions across the globe.

Jean-Luc Eiselé Chief Executive Officer, World Heart Federation

The campaign will not only inform the wider public on at-risk groups and create awareness, but also seeks to serve vulnerable groups. In partnership, AstraZeneca and the World Heart Federation will provide these people with the much-needed advice and resources on their risk and how to manage their condition and stay healthy during the pandemic.

This is part of a wider partnership between AstraZeneca and the World Heart Federation, driving global action to prevent, control, and reduce the burden of cardiovascular disease and its associated risks and complications.


It’s imperative we help those who are vulnerable during the COVID-19 pandemic and support them on how to manage their disease during this time. Partnering with the World Heart Federation means a united front to provide clarity in disease management during the pandemic.

Joris Silon Senior Vice President, Global Cardiovascular, Renal and Metabolism (CVRM), BioPharmaceuticals Business Unit

Watch out for more on this partnership by following #UseYourHeart, or by visiting WHF or AstraZeneca’s social media channels.



1. World Health Organization. Cardiovascular diseases [cited 2020 May 13]. Available from: URL: (Accessed 11.5.20).

2. Kendir C et al. Cardiovascular disease patients have increased risk for comorbidity: A cross-sectional study in the Netherlands. Eur J Gen Pract 2018; 24(1):45–50.

3. World Health Organization. Q&A on coronaviruses (COVID-19). Available at: (Accessed 11.5.20).

4. British Heart Foundation. Heart attack symptoms. Available from: URL: (Accessed 14.5.20).

5. Two important messages on COVID-19 and CVD [European Society of Cardiology, COVID 19 and Cardiology; ESC TV]. Available from: URL: (Accessed 14.5.20).


Veeva ID: Z4-24338 
Date of prep: May 2020