The Centro Nacional de Investigaciones Cardiovasculares (CNIC: National Centre for Cardiovascular Research) has launched an app El círculo de la salud, (The Circle of Health, in Spanish), the aim of which is to use the new technologies to teach people how to control cardiovascular risk factors. This is a Fundación Pro CNIC initiative designed to meet one of the principal objectives both of the organisation and its director general, Dr. Valentín Fuster: the promotion of health.
Cardiovascular disease is the principal cause of mortality both across the world in general and in Spain specifically and there are six risk factors we can modify to avoid it. This application is intended to teach people how to change their habits as regards these factors: two are chemical (cholesterol and diabetes), two physical (obesity and high blood pressure) and two behavioural (tobacco consumption and lack of physical exercise).
The new app features a video in which Dr Fuster explains what each of these risk factors consists of. ‘I believe that the promotion of health is something that should be addressed in a positive way and that is why we have dropped the phrase ‘disease prevention’. The message is that we can all do a lot to improve our health and the launch of this new tool is without doubt good news for society’, the director general of CNIC states.
The app consists of a number of phases. The first stage suggests that the user takes a test to evaluate his or her cardiovascular state of health, although the result should not be taken as definitive and the importance of consulting a specialist is stressed, especially if the result is negative. The user then moves on to the information stage, in which the keys to avoiding the risk factors are explained and videos and other interactive tools used to focus on their significance. The motivation phase is one of the app’s most important, as it works on teaching people how to give up their unhealthy habits and replace them with more beneficial ones. This phase is in line with the philosophy Dr Fuster set out in this recent book ‘El círculo de la motivación’ (The Circle of Motivation, in Spanish), in which he talks about the Four Ts and the Four As, essential tools in achieving changes in habits to promote health. And finally the app focuses on activation, which includes advice on specific actions grouped together as weekly challenges to enable the user to improve his or her health and to share them with friends and family too.
To end, The Circle of Health, available as a free download on Google Play and Apple Store, sets out the key points on how to avoid the most important risk factors of cardiovascular disease, using an interface of great visual attractiveness and complete multimedia content, the aim of which is to promote the health of the general public.
Further information can be found on this video (in Spanish).