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Tuesday, 5th March 2013

The Global Burden of Disease: Generating Evidence, Guiding Policy

Source: Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation

From the Introduction:

Over the last two decades, the global health landscape has undergone rapid transformation. People around the world are living longer than ever before, and the population is getting older.The number of people in the world is growing. Many countries have made remarkable progress in preventing child deaths. As a result, disease burden is increasingly defined by disability instead of premature mortality.The leading causes of death and disability have changed from communi- cable diseases in children to non-communicable diseases in adults. Eating too much has overtaken undernutrition as a leading risk factor for illness.These global trends differ across regions, and nowhere is this contrast more striking than in sub-Saharan Africa. Communicable, maternal, nutritional, and newborn diseases continue to dominate throughout sub-Saharan Africa.

The Global Burden of Disease (GBD) approach is a systematic, scientific effort to quantify the comparative magnitude of health loss due to diseases, injuries, and risk factors by age, sex, and geography for specific points in time.The latest iteration of that effort, the Global Burden of Diseases, Injuries, and Risk Factors Study 2010 (GBD 2010), was published in The Lancet in December 2012.The intent is to create a global public good that will be useful for informing the design of health systems and the creation of public health policy. It estimates premature death and disability due to 291 diseases and injuries, 1,160 sequelae (direct consequences of disease and injury), and 67 risk factors for 20 age groups and both sexes in 1990, 2005, and 2010. GBD 2010 produced estimates for 187 countries and 21 regions. In total, the study generated nearly 1 billion estimates of health outcomes.

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Having begun his career in academic libraries, Adrian Janes has subsequently worked extensively in public libraries, chiefly in enquiry work as an Information Services librarian. In this role he has had particular responsibility for information from both the UK Government and the European Union. He wrote a detailed report on sources for the latter which was published by FreePint in 2007, and has contributed articles to FreePint and ResourceShelf. He is involved in training in information literacy and the use of online reference resources.

A Contributing Editor to DocuTicker, he also write reviews for Pennyblackmusic.

Adrian can be reached at adrian.janes@freepint.com

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