• Each year about 1.3 million children are born with congenital heart disease (CHD).[1]
  • One in four will die without immediate intervention[2] and many more will need childhood surgery to reach age 18. But 90% of the world’s children have no access to cardiac care.[3]
  • In many disadvantaged communities, untreated infections also can cause rheumatic heart disease (RHD).[3]
  • RHD is the most common children’s heart problem in many low-income countries. Worldwide there are an estimated 33 million people living with RHD.[4]
  • Both CHD and RHD patients need life-long special cardiac care to keep their hearts healthy. Even countries with excellent childhood heart care often struggle to care for these patients as they age.


    1. van der Linde, D., Konings, E. E., Slager, M. A., Witsenburg, M., Helbing, W. A., Takkenberg, J. J., & Roos-Hesselink, J. W. (2011). Birth prevalence of congenital heart disease worldwide: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Journal of the American College of Cardiology, 58(21), 2241-2247.
    1. Moller JH, Taubert KA, Allen HD, Clark EB, Lauer RM. Cardiovascular health and disease in children: current status. A Special Writing Group from the Task Force on Children and Youth, American Heart Association. Circulation 1994;89(2):923-930.
    1. Carapetis JR, Steer AC, Mulholland EK, Weber M. The global burden of group A streptococcal diseases. Lancet Infect Dis 2005;5:685-694.
  1. Watkins DA, Johnson CO, Colquhoun, SM, Karthikeyan G, Beaton A, Bukhman G, et al. Global, regional, and national burden of rheumatic heart disease, 1990-2015. N Engl J Med 2017; 377:713-722.