A new brief from World Heart Federation member Children’s HeartLink, Finding The Invisible Child: Childhood Heart Disease and the Global Health Agenda, calls attention to access barriers to treatment for millions of children in developing countries in need of care. This is the second in a series of four briefs about cardiovascular disease (CVD) in children. The first in the series (released April 2015) addresses the lack of data on prevalence and incidence of congenital heart disease. The final two briefs will follow over the next 12 months, culminating in a Call to Action.
Every year, one million children are born with heart disease. For children born in a developed country, odds are good that they will receive the care they need to survive, grow and have a healthy childhood. The odds for children born in poor countries are dreadful. Only 7% of the population in developing countries has access to congenital heart disease surgery. Millions of children need to be diagnosed and given life-saving treatment.