Public health and research funding for childhood neurodevelopmental disorders in Sub-Saharan Africa: a time to balance priorities

  • Muideen O. Bakare | mobakare2000@yahoo.com Child and Adolescent Unit, Federal Neuropsychiatric Hospital, Enugu, Nigeria.
  • Kerim M. Munir Division of Developmental Medicine, Boston Children’s Hospital, Boston, MA, United States.
  • Mashudat A. Bello-Mojeed Child and Adolescent Unit, Federal Neuropsychiatric Hospital, Lagos, Nigeria.

Abstract

Sub-Saharan African (SSA) population consists of about 45% children, while in Europe and North America children population is 10- 15%. Lately, attention has been directed at mitigating childhood infectious and communicable diseases to reduce under-five mortality. As the under-five mortality index in Sub-Saharan Africa has relatively improved over the last two decades, more Sub-Saharan African children are surviving beyond the age of five and, apparently, a sizeable percentage of this population would be living with one or more childhood neurodevelopmental disorders (NDD). The distribution of child mental health service resources across the world is unequal. This manifests in the treatment gap of major childhood onset mental health problems in SSA, with the gap being more pronounced for childhood NDD. It is important to balance the public health focus and research funding priorities in Sub-Saharan Africa. We urgently need to define the burden of childhood NDD in the region for healthcare planning and policy formulation.

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Author Biography

Muideen O. Bakare, Child and Adolescent Unit, Federal Neuropsychiatric Hospital, Enugu
Consultant Psychiatrist / Adjunct Lecturer
Published
2014-01-15
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Brief Reports
Supporting Agencies
This work was supported in part by Fogarty International Center/NIH grants TW005807 and TW009248 (KMM).
Keywords:
public health, childhood neurodevelopmental disorders, Sub-Saharan Africa
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How to Cite
Bakare, M., Munir, K., & Bello-Mojeed, M. (2014). Public health and research funding for childhood neurodevelopmental disorders in Sub-Saharan Africa: a time to balance priorities. Healthcare in Low-Resource Settings, 2(1). https://doi.org/10.4081/hls.2014.1559