Aspen Foundation continues to support award-winning documentary Take Heart

Poster of Take Heart documentary, supported by Aspen Foundation

The Aspen Foundation is delighted to continue its support to rid Australia of Rheumatic Heart Disease (RHD) by supporting a screening of Take Heart: The Quest to Rid Australasia of Rheumatic Heart Disease at the University of Canberra.  The screening will take place on 03 May 2019.

The Take Heart project was launched in 2016 with the Aspen Foundation as presenting partner for the one-hour feature film. Today the project comprises a one-hour feature film, 25 short films, a free action toolkit, free smartphone app, this website, social media places, as well as touring screenings and photography exhibitions.

Most Australians have never heard of Rheumatic Heart Disease (RHD), which was largely eliminated from non-Indigenous communities in the 1960s, yet two Indigenous Australians die per week from it. In fact, Australia has some of the highest rates of RHD in the world and children as young as two have been diagnosed with severe RHD that requires open-heart surgery and decades of painful injections.

This award-winning documentary reveals the incredible true-life stories of young people living with RHD, their families and the health workers caring for them. You will witness the issues that can contribute to RHD, the diagnosis, the treatment and the socio-political and economic challenges of living with RHD. It will also arm you with the information you need to help eliminate RHD in Australia.

Australia is using surgical solutions for social problems in its response to increasing rates of rheumatic heart disease, 2018 Northern Territory Australian of the Year and the Territory’s only paediatric cardiologist, Dr Bo Reményi, has said.

Speaking at the recent 15th National Rural Health Conference in Hobart, Dr Reményi called for all major political parties to commit prior to the election to investment in immediate community-led on the ground action to prevent and eliminate RHD.

“RHD is the best marker for disadvantage between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians,” Dr Reményi said.

“Some of our communities have the highest rates in the world of this disease – young children are being subjected to painful treatment and even open heart surgery, and they are dying way too early.

“RHD is the greatest cause of cardiovascular inequality for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in this country. If we don’t close the gap on RHD, we cannot Close The Gap between Indigenous and Non-Indigenous life and health outcomes.”

Event Information

A working-style lunch will be provided on arrival for all attendees.

Seats are limited, so please register your attendance to [email protected]