The killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis, the killing of Ahmaud Arbery in Brunswick, Georgia, and so many other lives lost in the past, is unacceptable. Too many incidents over too many years continue to haunt our nation and impede efforts to heal the racial wounds in our country.
During these disturbing times, the leadership of the Heart Failure Society of America wishes to express our sadness and concern about these unjustified and preventable deaths in our nation. We join our colleagues in the cardiology community in denouncing these incidents of racism and violence against communities of color.
We also reconfirm our strong commitment to health equity in America. African Americans have a higher prevalence of heart failure, develop heart failure at an earlier age, have a higher degree of cardiac dysfunction and disease severity at the time of diagnosis, and have higher rates of heart failure hospitalizations compared to other races. These data underline the importance of recognizing the potential reasons for these disparities and developing effective strategies to eliminate racism and health inequity. The recent identification of health disparities during the COVID-19 pandemic is only the latest example of the challenges we face.
HFSA is committed to addressing and eliminating these disparities in heart failure and cardiovascular care and align with our cardiovascular partners in calling for justice. We stand ready to work with others to help address these disparities and racial challenges in America. And we hope for movement towards unity and away from violence during these challenging times.
Together we can honor the memories of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery and others lost in similar incidences, by doing all we can every day to make a better nation.
Biykem Bozkurt, MD
Heart Failure Society of America