Non-communicable chronic diseases in Latin America and the Caribbean
This report begins by assessing the personal, clinical, and economic burden of non-communicable chronic diseases (NCDs) in the Latin American and Caribbean (LAC) region. Half of all years of life lost in the LAC region are attributable to NCDs. People in the LAC region are as equally likely to die prematurely from just one NCD, i.e., cardiovascular disease, than from all communicable diseases combined. NCDs affect people of all ages, including children and women of childbearing age. NCDs are more likely to affect the poor because they often do not have the ability to prevent or treat NCDs. NCDs also have a tremendous economic cost that can inhibit economic growth. From an economic perspective, the most productive years are those between age15 and 60. Unfortunately, 20 percent of men and 11 percent of women who live to age15 in the LAC region will die before they are 60. Most of these premature deaths are associated with NCDs. The economic cost associated with diabetes is more than double the economic cost of HIV/AIDS in the LAC region, and the cost of cardiovascular disease is even higher.