Progress on cardiovascular disease was a significant driver of better health and prosperity in the latter half of the 20th century, however progress has recently stalled – with indications it may be in reverse.

Stalling progress on cardiovascular disease costs lives, but also undermines individual and national prosperity: that is, it costs lives and livelihoods. New analysis for this report finds that cardiovascular disease is one of the most prevalent conditions among those economically inactive due to sickness.

There are signs that the UK could be doing far better. Had we matched European peers since 2010 on acute myocardial infarction mortality, our analysis predicts we would have observed around 30,000 fewer deaths in the decade beginning 2020.

In the interest of health, wellbeing, prosperity, and fairness, we need to raise our ambition on cardiovascular disease.