An investment case for the prevention and management of rheumatic heart disease in the African Union 2021–30: a modelling study

Matthew M Coates, Karen Sliwa, David A Watkins, Liesl Zühlke, Pablo Perel, Florence Berteletti, Jean-Luc Eiselé, Sheila L Klassen, Gene F Kwan, Ana O Mocumbi, Dorairaj Prabhakaran, Mahlet Kifle Habtemariam, Gene Bukhman

RHD Investment Case LGH Despite declines in deaths from rheumatic heart disease (RHD) in Africa over the past 30 years, it remains a major cause of cardiovascular morbidity and mortality on the continent. We present an investment case for interventions to prevent and manage RHD in the African Union (AU).

Increased coverage of interventions to control and manage RHD could accelerate progress towards eradication in AU member states. Gaps in local epidemiological data and particular components of the disease process create uncertainty around the level of benefits. In the short term, costs of secondary prevention and secondary and tertiary care for RHD are lower than for primary prevention, and benefits accrue earlier.