|A group of volunteers gather for a class on first aid and cardiopulmonary resuscitation in Liaocheng, Shandong province. (China Daily/Zhang Zhenxiang)|
One of the sadder news that came out from last week's national parliamentary sessions was the sudden death of Hangzhou mayor Shao Zhanwei, who suffered a heart attack during the meetings.
According to statistics, China now has about 230 million people with cardiovascular diseases, in the high risk group of having heart problems and stroke.
About 1,500 people die of heart attacks every day, according to Zhang Shu, a member of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, and a heart disease specialist with Fu Wai Hospital, one of China's largest hospitals specializing in cardiovascular diseases.
Many such deaths could have been avoided, Zhang says, if people around them were made more aware of their health conditions and knew how to administer first aid. Zhang was speaking at a conference on Saturday organized by Health Times, a publication covering health news in China.
"People think sudden death is hard to prevent. They are very wrong," says Fan Li, an elderly diseases specialist, vice-president of the Military 301 Hospital in Beijing, and a CPPCC member.
"Sudden deaths always have signs long before the final attack, and can be prevented."
Those Xiaorenshu we read in childhood
Trip planner: four-day trip to S China
Wonderful snapshots of flying buzzards
Forever Shangri-la: China's heaven on earth
Top 10 ever-victorious generals in history
Dreamy log cabins among woods
Top 10 best airports in China 2012
Mysterious Zhongnanhai in Beijing
Top 10 Chinese 'Kung Fu Kings' in Minguo period