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Belize Among Countries with Highest Prevalence of Chronic Kidney Disease

Preliminary Findings from National Survey to Identify the Epidemiological Risk Factors for Chronic Kidney Disease

Belmopan. September 3rd, 2018. The Ministry of Health in partnership with the Taiwan International Cooperation and Development Fund (ICDF) and the Statistical Institute in Belize (SIB), jointly carried out a national survey for risk factors of Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) countrywide from August 7th to December 15th, 2017.

The preliminary statistics for the final data indicates that 13.9% of citizens between ages 20-55 years show some evidence of kidney impairment. The prevalence of CKD worldwide is estimated to be 8-16%. These findings put Belize among countries with the highest prevalence.

This national survey interviewed a total of 10,343 persons. From that total, 7,506 participants also provided a blood and urine sample to be tested. The information gathered was used to identify other potential risk factors for the development of CKD such as age, ethnicity (Mestizo/Hispanic) and specific conditions such as diabetes and high blood pressure. It will also help to design more targeted policies and programs to address kidney disease.

The definition of Chronic Kidney Disease used in this survey refers to the level of functionality of the individual’s kidney reflecting some degree of damage. Using this operational definition it is to be noted that not all persons identified with CKD require hemodialysis.

A more detailed analysis of this data suggests that countrywide the female population has a higher prevalence of CKD (15.0%) than the male population (12.5%). Aging seems to also be associated with increased risk of CKD as the population between the ages of 50-55 years represented the group with the highest prevalence (27.4%) of those in the study. The ethnic group most at risk is the Mestizo group with a prevalence of CKD (15.5%). An analysis by district shows that persons living in Orange Walk and Corozal have a higher prevalence of CKD at 19.3% and 17.0%, respectively.

Other statistical analyses are still to be applied to the data, with a final report expected to be delivered and shared with the Ministry of Health and key partners by the end of January 2019.

For More Information contact: Dr. Francis Morey, Deputy Director of Health Services, Ministry of Health. 822-2325

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