Therapeutic areas


Cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) are disorders of the heart and blood vessels and include coronary heart disease, cerebrovascular disease, rheumatic heart disease and other conditions. Four out of five CVD deaths are due to heart attacks and strokes. Individuals at risk of CVD may demonstrate raised blood pressure, glucose, and lipids as well as overweight and obesity. These can all be easily measured in primary care facilities. Identifying those at highest risk of CVDs and ensuring they receive appropriate treatment can prevent premature deaths. Access to essential NCD medicines and basic health technologies in all primary health care facilities is essential to ensure that those in need receive treatment and counselling.


An estimated 17.5 million people died from CVDs in 2012, representing 31% of all global deaths. Of these deaths, an estimated 7.4 million were due to coronary heart disease and 6.7 million were due to stroke.

Low- and middle-income countries are disproportionally affected: over 80% of CVD deaths take place in low- and middle-income countries and occur almost equally in men and women.

By 2030, almost 23.6 million people will die from CVDs, mainly from heart disease and stroke. These are projected to remain the single leading causes of death. (WHO source)


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The field of psychiatry extends from diagnosis to treatment, including protecting against mental disorders, and covering various cognitive, behavioural and emotional disorders. There are many different mental disorders and they occur everywhere. They can be seen in all regions of the world, all countries and all societies. They occur in both men and women, at all stages of life.

The prevalence of neuropsychiatric conditions as a whole, which include certain of these mental disorders, among adults has been estimated to be around 10% (GBD, 2000).

It is estimated that 450 million people worldwide are affected by neuropsychiatric diseases. These include unipolar depression, bipolar emotional disorders, schizophrenia, disorders associated with alcohol or the use of certain drugs, Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia, post-traumatic stress disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, panic disorder and primary insomnia.

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Rheumatology is a speciality that deals with diagnosing and treating illness of the musculoskeletal system, i.e. the bones, joints, muscles, tendons and ligaments. It also includes certain peripheral neurological conditions, such as sciatica and, most importantly, all inflammatory rheumatic diseases and forms of auto-immune disease that can have many manifestations elsewhere than in the joints (skin, eye, kidney, lungs, etc.).

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Ear, Nose and Throat
The Ear, Nose and Throat specialism of medicine (sometimes called otorhinolaryngology) is concerned with treating disorders of those parts of the body.

Respiratory system
The respiratory system provides the blood with oxygen and eliminates gaseous wastes (mainly carbon dioxide) from the body. The gas exchanges take place in the lungs, which are subject to a variety of infections and other illnesses.

Respiratory illnesses come in a variety of forms: bronchitis, asthma, COPD, allergic rhinitis and lung cancer, etc., and result in 3 million deaths per year.

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The World Health Organisation defines infertility in terms of a couple wishing to have a child and not having succeeded in achieving a pregnancy after one year of regular unprotected sexual intercourse. Infertility is a major problem in developed countries, affecting more than one couple in seven.

Fertility problems can relate to either the man or the woman. It is estimated that 30% of cases of infertility relate solely to the woman, 20% solely to the man, 40% to problems in both partners and 10% are of unknown origin. Depending on the nature of the problem, various medical methods may be used to assist procreation.

Sexual matters
Worldwide, one man in four suffers from premature ejaculation and 40% of men over the age of 40 experience erection problems. A difficult pace of life or other pressures of one sort or another are increasingly responsible for problems with desire that affect, sometimes seriously, an individual or both members of a couple.