Each year, more than 300,000 people die from rheumatic heart disease (RHD). The burden is greatest in the most productive years of life for those who can least afford it. The absolute burden of disease, the social effect, economic cost and the abject inequality of RHD demand urgent global action.
Almost exclusively, the people who die of RHD live in low- and middle-income countries or in vulnerable communities in high-income countries. Their deaths are preventable with medical knowledge and antibiotics which have existed for more than half a century. In high resource settings socioeconomic and medical determinants have functionally eradicated RHD. Yet preventing, diagnosing and treating RF and RHD remains a fitful struggle in low resource settings. Death and disability from RHD continues to extract an enormous social, economic and cultural toll on young adults and their communities.
Reach’s mission is to promote the health of vulnerable populations through technical support to local, regional and global efforts to prevent and control rheumatic fever and rheumatic heart disease.
Reach provides technical support and policy translation to amplify rheumatic heart disease control efforts locally, regionally and globally. As an organisation we aim to identify, describe and disseminate solutions for this neglected disease and to reduce the burden on vulnerable populations around the world. As a collaborative organization, we partner with a broad range of stakeholders – including clinicians, other disease communities, academics, donors, governments, industry and people living with RHD – to achieve our common goals.