Cardiovascular, Respiratory, and Related Disorders: Key Messages on Essential Interventions to Address its Burden in Low-and Middle-Income Countries

Authors: Dorairaj Prabhakaran, Shuchi Anand, David Watkins, Thomas Gaziano, Yangfeng Wu, Jean Claude Mbanya, Rachel Nugent

Adults living in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) face high risk for death, disability, and impoverishment from cardiovascular, respiratory, and related disorders (CVRDs). Most of these disorders prove preventable or, if they occur, remain medically treatable to improve longevity and reduce disability. Optimal prevention and treatment—which require resources but also consistent and persistent therapeutic compliance—remain a challenge even in high-income countries (HICs). Additionally, in LMICs, the limited capacity to detect these silent diseases and provide early treatment contributes to the rapid emergence of advanced complications and premature death. Effective prevention strategies remain underutilized, and primary care centers require strengthening to treat the current and growing burden of CVRDs. Cost-effective prevention policies and treatments for CVRDs remain possible to implement in LMICs, and universal health care that includes care for CVRDs provides benefits beyond individual health to financial protection of families. Many important issues remain uncertain, however, especially given the scarcity of LMIC economic evidence, including research in areas likely to produce high public benefit and new technologies, medications, and delivery platforms.
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