Over three-quarters of deaths from cardiovascular disease (CVD) occur in Low-and-Middle-income-countries, many of which reside in Sub Saharan African region. One of the nine global non-communicable disease (NCD) targets, is to reduce cardiovascular mortality by 25% by the year 2025. Whether this is attainable or not depends largely on the capacity of healthcare providers and policy makers to address the rising prevalence and lethality of CVDs, especially through evidence based medicine, guided, supported by high quality research and good research methods training.
The need for task-sharing, networking and contextually relevant research are fundamental in optimizing blood pressure control and secondary prevention of CVDs. In continuity with the 2014 edition (Dzudie A, Aminde L, Ngowe Ngowe M, Takah N, Luma HN, Doualla MS, et al. The way forward for clinical research in Cameroon: first scientific and research day in Douala, 2014. Cardiovasc J Afr. 2014 Oct;25(5):250–2) , the Clinical Research Education, Networking & Consultancy (CRENC), a leading research organization in Cameroon, engaged the Pan-African Society of Cardiology (PASCAR) and the Cameroon Cardiac Society (SCC) for a joint hypertension and heart failure symposium and 2 days (12-14 October 2016) training in human health research methods at the Douala General Hospital.
The primary aims were to foster clinical research in cardiovascular medicine through raising awareness on CVDs, evidence-based training at international standards, encouraging conduct and dissemination of high quality research, building programs with continuous medical education (CME) credits and secondarily, to potentiate the 2nd Douala Research & Scientific days.
The symposium featured didactic lectures, inter-spaced with abstract oral/poster presentations, a clinical visit, culminated in the launching of the book “Heart of Africa”, and young investigator awards. It is hoped that these served to capacitate existing CV structures, breed the next generation of cardiovascular physician – researchers and imprint a track of clinical research excellence to be emulated in Cameroon and beyond.