Stroke in Malaysia
Stroke in Malaysia is a significant public health problem. It is estimated that 50 000 people suffer from stroke annually (Ministry of Health, MOH 2007). A five-year statistic from 2003 to 2008 on total admissions to government hospitals reflects an increasing trend of admissions due to stroke, with 17 000 cases in 2008 compared to 11 000 cases in the year 2003 (Informatic Centre MOH 2009). In contrary, stroke mortality for the 5 years period showed a steady decline from 15.7% in 2003 to 12.5% in 2008, reflecting increasing number of stroke survivors thus those living with some forms of physical disabilities. The number of people with post-stroke disabilities is expected to increase in the future, in line with increase in hospitalizations due to stroke, which is expected to be beyond 25 000 by the year 2020 (MOH 2007, cited in The Star 2007).