The overall aim of this program of research is to identify and address potential influences of ethnicity and sex/gender in the management of cardiovascular disease.
Two major studies will be undertaken:

(1) Identifying and testing culturally appropriate methods to provide information to South Asians about heart health

The research will helps us understand what the best way to get information to individuals that are from South Asian backgrounds to help reduce their risk of heart disease. South Asians include individuals from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Nepal, and others. 

2) Testing a family-oriented culturally tailored lifestyle and medication program to assist South Asians to manage chronic heart disease.
Family is very important to South Asians, and we learn better when the family is involved. This research will help us understand how we can use the strength of family to help reduce the risk of heart disease in our community.
April 14, 2016

On this blessed day of Vaisakhi 2016, the DIL Walk Foundation donated $100 000 to the Guru Nanak Dev Ji DIL Research Chair at the University of Calgary. DIL Walk Foundation, has to date, donated a total of $200 000. The research will help us understand what the best way to get information to people, that are from South Asian backgrounds. Also, to help reduce their risk of heart disease, and save lives. South Asians include individuals from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Nepal, and others.

The Faculty of Nursing and the DIL Walk Foundation created the Guru Nanak Dev Ji DIL (Heart) Research Chair to benefit the study of cardiovascular health in the South Asian population. As chairholder, cardiovascular nurse scientist Kathryn King-Shier will lead research into heart health for this community, who are at greater risk of heart disease than the general population. King-Shier has been working with ethnic communities in Calgary and across the country for more than 12 years in cardiovascular disease symptoms, access to care and prevention activities. As a University of Calgary professor and member of the Libin Cardiovascular Institute of Alberta and the O’Brien Institute for Public Health, King-Shier’s multi-methods approach enables her to examine health issues from a variety of perspectives.

Partnering with the University of Calgary allows a dedicated team to focus their efforts on lowering the burden of heart disease in the South Asian community in Canada.

It has been one year since the Guru Nanak Dev Ji DIL Research Chair was officially launched! The Chair is analyzing data from a 5-year study (White, South Asian, Chinese) who have had heart pain (angina) or heart attack. We want to determine what, if any, differences exist between men and women and between these ethnic groups, in the symptoms they experience, or how they receive pre-hospital and hospital care. People were enrolled in this study from 12 hospitals in Canada as well as a hospital in India (Kolkata) and China (Changchun). We believe the findings will be the most comprehensive to date.

To prepare for the potential public health messages that will come from this important work, we are conducting an extensive review of the medical literature and conducting focus groups with people from the South Asian and Chinese communities to understand how people like to receive health information. We also plan to test effective ways of providing heart health information.

The Chair has just started a study to examine how time orientation may differ between ethnic groups. This information will also inform how public health messages are tailored to the South Asian and Chinese ethnic groups. Also, they have recently submitted a large grant to the Canadian Institutes of Health Research to fund development and testing of a family-focused program to help South Asian people reduce their heart disease risk. Regardless of receipt of funding, we hope to begin this study in the fall/winter.

We continue to publish study findings in medical and nursing journals, and work toward taking study results to the community. The chair is a $1-million five-year commitment with both DIL Walk and the University of Calgary contributing equally. Thank you to all of you for your ongoing support and commitment to helping the community. We need your SUPPORT, so that the HEART research can move forward. You can support the RESEARCH, and help save lives by DONATING now. Each donation will receive a tax receipt.