Online course

It Starts with Your Heart: Understanding Heart and Circulatory Diseases

Every three minutes, someone in the UK dies from heart and circulatory disease. Let's beat heartbreak forever.

It Starts with Your Heart: Understanding Heart and Circulatory Diseases

1 in 4 of us will die from heart and circulatory diseases. Let us change that.

When was the last time you had a conversation about heart or circulatory diseases? They are the world’s biggest killers but we don’t often talk about them. We want to change that. People are often surprised to hear about how diseases like coronary heart disease, stroke, vascular dementia and diabetes are connected. This course will help you learn more about what these diseases are, the effect that they have on your body and how our pioneering research is taking us closer to a world without them – helping you to have conversations that have the potential to beat heartbreak forever.

What topics will you cover?

  • Explore what heart and circulatory diseases and their risk factors are
  • Understand the impact they have on a global and local scale, in the UK, globally and in our community
  • Explore how your how these diseases are connected by your circulatory system
  • You’ll also get a taste of how our research is beating heartbreak forever

When would you like to start?

  • Available now
    This course started 7 January 2019

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you'll be able to...

  • Explain what heart and circulatory diseases are
  • Describe how these diseases are connected
  • Discuss the risk factors that lead to heart and circulatory diseases, and what you can do to help beat the heartbreak that they cause
  • Explore how research is looking to find better ways to prevent, treat and cure heart and circulatory diseases

Who is the course for?

This course is aimed at anyone who wants to learn more about the fundamentals of heart and circulatory diseases and the things that cause them.

You might be personally affected by heart or circulatory diseases, or maybe you’ve recently been told you’re at risk of developing them. You may be looking to improve your knowledge so you can better support a loved one or a healthcare professional looking to help people better understand and talk about heart and circulatory diseases.

Whatever you’ve come here for – we hope you take something meaningful away.

No prior knowledge of heart or circulatory diseases is needed.

Who will you learn with?

Simon Gillespie

Hi I’m Simon. I’m the Chief Executive here at the British Heart Foundation and a lead educator on our first online course understanding heart and circulatory diseases – it starts with your heart.

Rebecca Speers

Hi, my name is Becky. I have Long QT syndrome – a heart disease that I inherited. I’ve been sharing my story to help the BHF to raise awareness of heart and circulatory diseases.

Helen Skipworth (BHF)

I’m part of the communications team at the BHF. Beating heart and circulatory diseases is an important cause to me because I have heart disease in my family. I’m here to help answer your questions.

Who developed the course?

The British Heart Foundation raises money to fund research to keep hearts beating and blood flowing. Their vision is a world without heart and circulatory diseases.

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Join this course


  • Access to this course for 5 weeks
  • Includes any articles, videos, peer reviews and quizzes


  • Unlimited access to this course
  • Includes any articles, videos, peer reviews and quizzes
  • Certificate of Achievement to prove your success when you're eligible
  • Download and print your Certificate of Achievement anytime