Over two million people die of coronary diseases in India annually, which could cost the country $236 billion in the next 10 years due to loss in productive working days and treatment costs.
"Currently, India is home to over 60 million coronary heart patients and more than two million patients are succumbing to the disease every year," cardiologist Naresh Trehan told the Hindustan Times.
“The burden of the disease will weigh heavily on the economic backbone of the country unless people bring a change in their lifestyles. Along with the loss in human capital, the country's economy will suffer on account of loss in working days and treatment costs,” said Trehan, executive director of the Escorts Heart Institute and Research Centre.
According to a World Health Organization (WHO) estimate, India's economic loss due to heart related disease could be $236 billion until 2015. While it may cost Russia $303 billion, China is expected to lose more than $550 billion in the next decade.
More than 17 million people died of cardiovascular diseases in 2005, the WHO reported.
The WHO has warned that Indians, being genetically prone to cardiac disorders, are likely to constitute about 60 percent of the world's cardiac patients by 2010.