Global health research

Global health research supports the study of health issues related to the low and middle-income countries (LMICs) of the world and, more broadly, the health, health-system, health inequities, and health policy challenges facing populations living in conditions of vulnerability.

Canada is not insulated from the health problems that affect the lives of people around the world - we can't be healthy in an unhealthy world.

LMICs and some populations in developed countries, such as aboriginal peoples, face particular health challenges. Health inequities within and between countries continue to persist.

Health systems in LMICs do not have the physical infrastructure or human resources to deal with these challenges. The result is poor health and premature death and disability in many countries.

Poor health is a problem in and of itself. It impedes:

  • economic progress
  • enhanced productivity
  • improved standard of living
  • human fulfillment

Recognizing the need, Canada contributes towards meeting the United Nations (UN) Millennium Development Goals. In keeping with Canada's commitment, CIHR has identified global health research as a priority and engaged in a broad range of global health initiatives.

The need

Millions of people in LMICs die each year of diseases including:  

Non-communicable diseases (NCDs) also kill more than 40 million people each year, 80% in LMICs, comprising mainly of:

  • cardiovascular diseases - 17.7 million
  • cancers - 8.8 million
  • respiratory diseases - 3.9 million
  • diabetes - 1.6 million

Climate change is another exemplar global concern and its effects are being felt in many places, including LMICs.

For more information on the need, please visit Global Health: Healthy Canadians in a Healthy World.

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