On the agenda: Air pollution risk to heart patients

An international study has shown air pollution increases the chance of hospitalisation for people with heart failure.

Pollution: Risk to heart patients
Pollution: Risk to heart patients

In more detail

The British Heart Foundation (BHF) funded a University of Edinburgh study into data from 12 countries, including the UK, encompassing four million cases on the condition.

The research, published in The Lancet, showed an increased risk of hospitalisation and mortality rates in patients that was associated with various air pollutants.

The BHF wanted to publicise its call for the UK Government to meet EU targets for improving air quality and increase awareness of heart failure, including its Mending Broken Hearts Appeal, which funds research to find a cure.

PR strategy

The BHF sent out a press release, quoting its policy manager and mentioning the Mending Broken Hearts Appeal.

It briefed spokespeople located in Edinburgh and London, including BHF representatives and BHF-funded researchers.

It also made a variety of case studies available and sold into print, online and broadcast health journalists, working to The Lancet’s embargo. The Lancet ensured the story was prominent on its homepage and used social media to engage with the wider public. 

Media coverage

The story was featured widely across media including in The Guardian and online at the BBC, Mail and Telegraph, on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme and Radio 5 Live, as well as regionally in Scotland.

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