Heart attacks are the leading cause of death and disability in India, accounting for 1.5-3 million deaths per year. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that 35 per cent of these deaths occur in young adults. Recent reports suggest an increase in cardiovascular diseases in Maharashtra among men between the age group of 30-40 years and in women in the age group of 40-60 years. Moreover, ischemic heart disease increases the probability of heart attacks, the most common one being ST-Elevation Myocardial Infarction (STEMI) causing premature deaths.
In order to combat this epidemic and provide the state with world-class cardiac care, the Maharashtra government launched the STEMI program, a state-wide AI-powered advanced diagnosis and care coordination program recognised by the National Health Mission (NHM). The aim is to enable rapid diagnosis of heart disease at all government centers with timely treatment.
State Directorate of Health Services joint director (NCD Cell) Dr Padmaja Jogewar said, “STEMI project has been initiated to tackle the burden of premature deaths due to cardiovascular disease by using AI-assisted-Human verified technology to quicken the detection of a heart attack. Everyone should pledge to make every heart healthy by embracing a healthy lifestyle, quitting tobacco and engaging in regular physical activity.”
The life-saving initiative has been launched in 12 districts of Akola, Aurangabad, Jalna, Kolhapur, Nagpur, Nanded, Nashik, Pune, Ratnagiri, Solapur, Wardha and Thane. As of date a total of 2.5 lakh people have been screened with the help of this program within the first year of implementation. Notably, more than 2,000 heart attacks have been detected within an astonishing turnaround time of less than six minutes, allowing patients to receive treatment promptly.
Tricog Health CEO Dr Charit Bhograj said, “STEMI program is a first-of-its-kind in India that has shown an amazing response in the very first year of launch. With the cooperation of the STEMI Maharashtra team, we have successfully crossed a key milestone of screening more than two lakh patients in the state.”