India launches stroke registry to combat “epidemic”

BMJ 2013; 346 doi: (Published 11 January 2013) Cite this as: BMJ 2013;346:f223
  1. Soumyadeep Bhaumik
  1. 1Kolkata

India has launched a stroke registry to collect data relating to cases of stroke from institutions and individual specialists across the country, to try to explain the high national incidence of stroke.

The registry is being run by the National Centre for Disease Informatics and Research, Bangalore, where staff members have started the process of collating data on stroke patients from institutions and individual specialists who have registered with the programme.

The stroke registry programme aims to collect comprehensive information not only on mortality, morbidity, and risk factors relating to stroke but also data on critical clinical findings, imaging, and diagnostic modalities.

It is hoped that the data will help scientists better understand stroke epidemiology and will give researchers and clinicians access to systematic, uniform, and continuous data that could be used to plan and implement future programmes on management, prevention, and rehabilitation and to monitor patterns of care of patients who have had a stroke.

A website has been created for this purpose (

“Having a web based registry where data can be submitted from even remote corners of the nation without any additional costs will be immensely beneficial,” said Aditi Aikat, associate professor in the Department of Community Medicine, North Bengal Medical College, Siliguri.

He said, “Most institutions in India up to secondary care level now have access to the internet. Since the portal for submission is available to all, it should have a widespread response.

“However, the idea of the stroke registry and the subsequent benefits from it must be marketed to the people. Unless that happens, optimal utilisation of the technology cannot be guaranteed.

“This is a dynamic process. Once it starts it will lead to more advocacy and more utilisation, and only then will it have a significant impact on the healthcare delivery system,” Aikat added.

The establishment of a stroke registry in India is being seen as a major public health move on account of the emerging epidemic of stroke in India. Stroke contributes substantially to the burden of disease in India, as well as to mortality. It has been estimated that the combined annual cost to India of stroke, coronary heart disease, and diabetes will be about $54bn (£34bn; €41bn) by 2015, about six times the $8.7bn lost through these diseases in 2005.1 Growth in India’s gross domestic product is estimated to slow by 1% by 2015 because of the combined effect of these diseases.


Cite this as: BMJ 2013;346:f223