Declare 14 April as “World Day for People Affected by Chagas Disease”
A Change.org petition was recently posted by La Federacion Internacional de Asociaciones de Personas Afectadas por la Enfermedad de Chagas (FINDECHAGAS) proposing to declare April 14 as the World Day of People Affected by Chagas Disease
The petition directed at the President of the WHO World Health Assembly is framed partially as follows:
1) The globalization of Chagas and the consequent demand for appropriate care worldwide, considering that the number of people infected is currently estimated to be at least, 8 million with more than 65 million deemed at risk.
2) Figures estimate that less than 10% of people who have Chagas’ disease are properly diagnosed and only 1% receive the treatment they need.
3) The need to inform and disseminate the message that Chagas’ disease is not synonymous with death but is a treatable disease, and also to draw attention to the challenges and obstacles that people living with the disease experience.
WHF-SIAC Global Roadmap on Chagas Disease
The World Heart Federation (WHF) is currently creating a WHF Roadmap on Chagas Disease in conjunction with SIAC.
The Roadmap aims to identify barriers in patients accessing appropriate care at all stages of the healthcare journey and proposes practical solutions to overcome these hurdles which are aimed at decision makers, healthcare professionals, health advocates, academic and research institutions.
Texas State University professor says there is a lack of awareness
Assistant Professor at Texas State University in the School of Health Administration, Dr. Paula Stigler-Granados says there is a huge lack of awareness in the U.S. about the disease.
“Not everyone is talking about this disease- one of the biggest barriers is lack of awareness amongst the health communities in the United States.” Research, such as Dr. Stigler Granados’ recent study on healthcare gaps for patients, help connect the dots.
She points specifically to the concern of congenital transmission. Right now, she’s advocating for more physicians to screen pregnant mothers in an effort to better understand prevalence.
Chagas disease diagnosis and treatment: PAHO issues new guide
Chagas: Preventing congenital transmission by active screening of girls and women of childbearing age
Chagas disease reported in dogs working along the U.S.-Mexico border
American Heart Association Scientific Statement: Chagas disease has spread outside of Latin America