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The Eighth World Congress of Pediatric Cardiology and Cardiac Surgery (WCPCCS) will be held in Washington DC, USA, from Saturday, 26 August, 2023 to Friday, 1 September, 2023, inclusive. The Eighth World Congress of Pediatric Cardiology and Cardiac Surgery will be the largest and most comprehensive scientific meeting dedicated to paediatric and congenital cardiac care ever held. At the time of the writing of this manuscript, The Eighth World Congress of Pediatric Cardiology and Cardiac Surgery has 5,037 registered attendees (and rising) from 117 countries, a truly diverse and international faculty of over 925 individuals from 89 countries, over 2,000 individual abstracts and poster presenters from 101 countries, and a Best Abstract Competition featuring 153 oral abstracts from 34 countries. For information about the Eighth World Congress of Pediatric Cardiology and Cardiac Surgery, please visit the following website: [www.WCPCCS2023.org]. The purpose of this manuscript is to review the activities related to global health and advocacy that will occur at the Eighth World Congress of Pediatric Cardiology and Cardiac Surgery.
Acknowledging the need for urgent change, we wanted to take the opportunity to bring a common voice to the global community and issue the Washington DC WCPCCS Call to Action on Addressing the Global Burden of Pediatric and Congenital Heart Diseases. A copy of this Washington DC WCPCCS Call to Action is provided in the Appendix of this manuscript. This Washington DC WCPCCS Call to Action is an initiative aimed at increasing awareness of the global burden, promoting the development of sustainable care systems, and improving access to high quality and equitable healthcare for children with heart disease as well as adults with congenital heart disease worldwide.
Prenatal diagnosis of critical CHDs and planned peripartum care is an emerging concept in resource-limited settings.
To report the impact of prenatal diagnosis and planned peripartum care on costs of neonatal cardiac care in a resource-limited setting.
Prospective study (October 2019 to October 2020). Consecutive neonates undergoing surgery or catheter-based interventions included. Patients were divided into prenatal (prenatal diagnosis) and post-natal (diagnosis after birth) groups. Costs of cardiac care (total, direct, and indirect) and health expenses to income ratio were compared between study groups; factors impacting costs were analysed.
A total of 105 neonates were included, including 33 in prenatal group. Seventy-seven neonates (73.3%) underwent surgical procedures while the rest needed catheter-based interventions. Total costs were 16.2% lower in the prenatal group (p = 0.008). Direct costs were significantly lower in the prenatal group (18%; p = 0.02), especially in neonates undergoing surgery (20.4% lower; p = 0.001). Health expenses to income ratio was also significantly lower in the prenatal group (2.04 (1.03–2.66) versus post-natal:2.58 (1.55–5.63), p = 0.01);, particularly in patients undergoing surgery (prenatal: 1.58 (1.03–2.66) vs. post-natal: 2.99 (1.91–6.02); p = 0.002). Prenatal diagnosis emerged as the only modifiable factor impacting costs on multivariate analysis.
Prenatal diagnosis and planned peripartum care of critical CHD is feasible in resource-limited settings and is associated with significantly lower costs of neonatal cardiac care. The dual benefit of improved clinical outcomes and lower costs of cardiac care should encourage policymakers in resource-limited settings towards developing more prenatal cardiac services.
Online learning has become an increasingly expected and popular component for education of the modern-day adult learner, including the medical provider. In light of the recent coronavirus pandemic, there has never been more urgency to establish opportunities for supplemental online learning. Heart University aims to be “the go-to online resource” for e-learning in CHD and paediatric-acquired heart disease. It is a carefully curated open access library of paedagogical material for all providers of care to children and adults with CHD or children with acquired heart disease, whether a trainee or a practising provider. In this manuscript, we review the aims, development, current offerings and standing, and future goals of Heart University.
An estimated 15 million children die or are crippled annually by treatable or preventable heart disease in low- and middle-income countries. Global efforts to reduce under-5 mortality have focused on reducing death from communicable diseases in low- and middle-income countries with little to no attention focusing on paediatric CHD and acquired heart disease. Lack of awareness of CHD and acquired heart disease, access to care, poor healthcare infrastructure, competing health priorities, and a critical shortage of specialists are important reasons why paediatric heart disease has not been addressed in low resourced settings. Non-governmental organisations have taken the lead to address these challenges. This review describes the global burden of paediatric heart disease and strategies to improve the quality of care for paediatric heart disease. These strategies would improve outcomes for children with heart disease.
The care of patients with CHD remains a challenge in low- and middle-income countries. Their health systems have not been able to achieve consistently high performance in this field. The large volume of patients, manpower constraints, inconsistencies in the level and type of background training of the teams caring for this patient population, and the inadequate quality control systems are some of the barriers to achieving excellence of care. We describe three different international projects supporting the paediatric cardiac surgical and paediatric cardiac intensive care programmes in Latin America, Asia, and the Caribbean.
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