Building optimal and sustainable kidney care in low resource settings: The role of healthcare systems

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Healthcare systems in low-income and lower-middle income countries (LLMICs) face significant challenges in the provision of health services, for example, kidney care to the population. Although this is linked to several high-level factors such as poor infrastructure, socio-demographic and political factors, healthcare funding has often been cited as the major reason for the wide gap in availability, accessibility and quality of care between LLMICs and rich countries. With the steady rising incidence and prevalence of kidney diseases globally, as well as cost of care, LLMICs are likely to suffer more consequences of these increases than rich countries and may be unable to meet targets of universal health coverage (UHC) for kidney diseases. As health systems in LLMICs continue to adapt in finding ways to provide access to affordable kidney care, various empirical and evidence-based strategies can be applied to assist them. This review uses a framework for healthcare strengthening developed by the World Health Organization (WHO) to assess various challenges that health systems in LLMICs confront in providing optimal kidney care to their population. We also suggest ways to overcome these barriers and strengthen health systems to improve kidney care in LLMICs.

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