Mr. Speaker, I would like to take this opportunity to remind you that February is Heart and Stroke Month in Canada.
Cardiovascular diseases are the leading cause of death, disability and illness in our country. They claim 75,000 lives each year.
These diseases cost our economy about $17 billion a year in medical care, hospital costs as well as salary and productivity losses.
The staggering total of this disease requires the development of more effective prevention and intervention strategies. A balanced approach is necessary where preventive practices are incorporated early in life and communities are healthier places to live.
I am sure that many of us have been personally affected by cardiovascular diseases and that is why I support and thank the organizations that work towards preventing and controlling these diseases.