Today is World Hypertension Day (WHD). It is a day designated by The World Hypertension League (WHL), which is made up of 85 national hypertension societies. Since 2006, the WHL has been dedicating May 17 of every year as WHD. It was initiated to increase awareness on hypertension which is the biggest single risk factor for cardiovascular diseases (CVDs).
CVDs are the number one cause of death globally where 1.55 million deaths every year are attributed to hypertension. By 2030, 23.3 million people would die from CVDs mainly from heart disease and stroke. This is a disturbing 34% increase from 17.3 million in 2008.
Malaysia is not spared from this global epidemic. Every day an average of 110 people are dying of heart disease and related diseases of the circulation. It is now the principal cause of death in the country, accounting for 16.5% of all deaths in Ministry of Health Hospitals in 2008.
Every year there are 38,000 new cases of heart disease in Malaysia. Six new cases of stroke occur every hour and stroke has become Malaysia's number-three killer after heart disease and cancer. One in 3 or about 32.7% of Malaysians aged 18years and above are suffering from hypertension.
In Malaysia, the prevalence of high blood pressure has increased in the past decade. In 1996, it was indicated that 33% of adults aged 30 years and above had hypertension. Ten years later, the figure has increased to 43%.
Bank Negara’s proposal to increase the cost of using cheques from 15 sen to 65 sen beginning April 2014, is unwarranted and should be withdrawn.
Dear Yang Amat Berhormat,
I wish to thank you for the personal invitation, extended in your open letter, to a meeting to discuss CAP’s and SAM’s concerns over the RM6.3 billion mega-project to build a 7 km undersea tunnel and 3 highways. I regret I cannot accept the publicised personal invitation because, in our culture, we do not invite people to meetings by open letters. In any case, a meeting will be futile and not serve any purpose since, according to press reports, the state government has already awarded the project to a private company despite opposition from many NGOs.
CAP urges the Penang state government and Forestry Department to investigate the felling of mangrove trees in Kuala Jalan Baru, Balik Pulau. Stringent action should be taken immediately on those responsible in committing this atrocity.
CAP would like to reiterate most emphatically its opposition to the latest mega-project proposed by the Penang state government to resolve the state’s traffic problem. The project comprises a 6.5km undersea tunnel from Gurney Drive to Bagan Ajam in Butterworth, a 4.2km Pesiaran Gurney-Tun Dr Lim Chong Eu Expressway bypass, a 4.6km Tun Dr Lim Chong Eu Expressway-Bandar Baru Air Itam bypass, and a four-lane 12km road linking Tanjung Bungah with Teluk Bahang.