Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities have some of the highest rates of rheumatic heart disease (RHD) in the world.
This report – published by the END RHD Centre of Research Excellence (END RHD CRE), based at the Telethon Kids Institute – outlines the trajectory of acute rheumatic fever (ARF) and RHD in Australia until 2031, assuming only the current levels of funding and attention to these diseases: the cost of inaction.
- There are currently 4,539 people living with rheumatic heart disease
- If no further action is taken to address rheumatic heart disease, a further 10,212 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are projected to develop the disease or its precursor – acute rheumatic fever – by 2031. Of these people:
- 1,370 will need heart surgery
- 563 with RHD will die
- $317 million will be spent on medical care