Kathryn Haugen

Document Type

Senior Honors Project

Publication Date



Cardiovascular disease is one of the most significant public health problems of our time, as it accounts for more deaths worldwide than any other cause. This paper uses a comparison of the United States and Switzerland, as well as objectives outlined in the WHO “2008-2013 Action Plan for the Global Strategy for the Prevention and Control of Noncommunicable Diseases,” to understand opportunities and challenges of addressing cardiovascular health and disease on a national and global level. Comparisons of demographics, social determinants of health, risk factors, and governmental policies and programs for these two countries provided a context for exploring cardiovascular health and disease. There is evidence that the United States and Switzerland view health and disease differently. These perspectives in turn influence national priorities, policies, and programs. There are also differences in data collection and measurement tools used to document progress on cardiovascular health goals. The findings from the analyses of these two countries have implications for a global agenda to prevent and control cardiovascular disease.