The burden of chronic kidney disease (CKD) has increased exponentially worldwide but more so in low- and middle-income countries. Specific risk factors in these regions expose their populations to an increased risk of CKD, such as genetic risk with APOL1 among populations of West African heritage or farmers with CKD of unknown etiology that spans various countries across several continents to immigrant/indigenous populations in both low- and high-income countries. Low- and middle-income economies also have the double burden of communicable and noncommunicable diseases, both contributing to the high prevalence of CKD. The economies are characterized by low health expenditure, sparse or nonexistent health insurance and welfare programs, and predominant out-of-pocket spending for medical care. This review highlights the challenges in populations with CKD from low-resource settings globally and explores how health systems can help ameliorate the CKD burden.
Keywords: Burden of chronic kidney disease; health systems; low- and middle-income countries; low-resource setting.
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