A disease of extreme poverty, rheumatic heart disease afflicts 40 million of the world’s most vulnerable people, the World Heart Federation reports.
To help stem RHD in Africa—which has the world’s highest RHD prevalence—a first-of-its-kind study offers a cost-benefit analysis of interventions like penicillin, cardiac surgery, and early detection.
The Lancet Global Health study found RHD mortality could be cut 30% over the next decade by:
- Investing $100 million a year to integrate cardiac care in rural primary care facilities
- Increasing access to the right medicines and cardiac surgery
The bottom line: 70,000 lives saved over the next decade.