Bulletin of the World Health Organization
Volume 96, Number 6, June 2018, 369-440
POLICY & PRACTICE
The global burden of kidney disease and the sustainable development goals
– Valerie A Luyckx, Marcello Tonelli & John W Stanifer
Kidney disease has been described as the most neglected chronic disease. Reliable estimates of the global burden of kidney disease require more population-based studies, but specific risks occur across the socioeconomic spectrum from poverty to affluence, from malnutrition to obesity, in agrarian to post-industrial settings, and along the life course from newborns to older people. A range of communicable and noncommunicable diseases result in renal complications and many people who have kidney disease lack access to care. The causes, consequences and costs of kidney diseases have implications for public health policy in all countries. The risks of kidney disease are also influenced by ethnicity, gender, location and lifestyle. Increasing economic and health disparities, migration, demographic transition, unsafe working conditions and environmental threats, natural disasters and pollution may thwart attempts to reduce the morbidity and mortality from kidney disease. A multisectoral approach is needed to tackle the global burden of kidney disease. The sustainable development goals (SDGs) emphasize the importance of a multisectoral approach to health. We map the actions towards achieving all of the SDGs that have the potential to improve understanding, measurement, prevention and treatment of kidney disease in all age groups. These actions can also foster treatment innovations and reduce the burden of such disease in future generations.