Top Things to Know: The Heart of 25 by 25: Achieving the Goal of Reducing Global and Regional Premature Deaths From Cardiovascular Diseases and Stroke

Published: May 09, 2016

  1. To achieve the overarching 25×25 target, the WHO identified 8 targets in the prevention, control, and treatment of 6 key risk factors, as well as 2 health systems targets related to the use of essential medicines, technologies, and drug therapies, to prevent NCDs, particularly CVDs.
  2. Of the 8 targets, 6 directly align with traditional CVD and stroke risk factors: 3 behavioral risk factors (tobacco use, sodium intake, physical inactivity), 2 biological risk factors (raised blood pressure, diabetes/obesity), and 1 management target directed at the treatment of individuals at high risk of CVD.
  3. The estimates modeled in this Scientific Statement take into account only the behavioral and biological risk factors.
  4. Results show that in 2025 >5 million men and 2.8 million women will die prematurely from CVD, which can be reduced to 3.5 million and 2.2 million, respectively, if risk factor targets for blood pressure, tobacco use, diabetes mellitus, and obesity are achieved.
  5. For most regions, reducing systolic blood pressure and tobacco use have more substantial effects on future scenarios compared with maintaining current levels of body mass index and fasting plasma glucose.
  6. Preventing increases in body mass index has the largest effect in some high-income countries.
  7. Approaches that achieve reductions in multiple risk factors has the largest impact for almost all regions.
  8. Achieving these goals can be accomplished only if countries set priorities, implement cost-effective population wide strategies, and collaborate in public/private partnerships across multiple sectors.
  9. Projections of future trends can be helpful for setting priorities in certain regions, however, due to the regional variability in these projections, regions and countries will need to develop, prioritize, implement, and evaluate context-specific approaches to addressing these targets.
  10. Continued progress toward improving cardiovascular health and reducing CVD and stroke deaths is vital to reaching the overall premature NCD mortality goal by 2025, just 1 decade away.


Sacco RL, Roth GA, Reddy KS, Arnett DK, Bonita R, Gaziano TA, et al. The heart of 25 by 25: achieving the goal of reducing global and regional premature deaths from cardiovascular diseases and stroke: a modeling study from the American Heart Association and World Heart Federation [published online ahead of print May 9, 2016]. Circulation. doi: 10.1161/CIR.0000000000000395