As the Sustainable Development Goals are adopted by United Nations member states, children with congenital disorders remain left behind in policies, programs, research, and funding. Although this finding was recognized by the creation and endorsement of the 63rd World Health Assembly Resolution in 2010 calling on United Nations member states to strengthen prevention of congenital disorders and the improvement of care of those affected, there has been little to no action since then. The Sustainable Development Goals call for the global health and development community to focus first and foremost on the most vulnerable and those left behind in the Millennium Development Goal era. To maximize the opportunity for every woman and couple to have a healthy child and to reduce the mortality and severe disability associated with potentially avoidable congenital disorders and their consequences for the children affected, their families and communities, and national health care systems, we propose priority measures that should be taken urgently to address this issue.
Darmstadt GL, Howson CP, Walraven G, Armstrong RW, Blencowe HK, Christianson AL, Kent A, Malherbe H, Murray JC, Padilla CD, Walani SR, for the Participant Working Group of the Dar es Salaam Seventh International Conference on Birth Defects and Disabilities in the Developing World. Prevention of Congenital Disorders and Care of Affected ChildrenA Consensus Statement. JAMA Pediatr. 2016;170(8):790-793. doi:10.1001/jamapediatrics.2016.0388