Action on Making All Skin Diseases a Global Health Priority

Addressing the Global Public Health Problem of Skin Diseases

Skin diseases represent a significant global health burden, ranking as the fourth leading cause of nonfatal burden worldwide. They affect individuals of all ages and are a common reason for seeking medical help. The burden is particularly high in vulnerable populations, such as refugees and those in low-resource settings, where access to healthcare is limited.

  • Socio-economic Impact: Skin diseases not only have physical health implications but also carry substantial stigma and socio-economic burdens. The stigma is especially pronounced for individuals with neglected tropical skin diseases, leading to significant psychological distress and affecting societal interactions. The economic impact is significant due to healthcare costs and lost productivity.

  • Access to Healthcare Services: Access to quality healthcare services for skin diseases is inadequate, particularly in low-resource regions where there is a shortage of dermatologists. Many individuals face misdiagnosis or lack of diagnosis, leading to poor quality of life and untreated conditions. Delays in accessing therapy can worsen outcomes and contribute to associated comorbidities and additional costs for the national health systems.

  • Progress and Challenges: While efforts have been made, such as WHO collaborations and global meetings, challenges persist in addressing skin diseases comprehensively. Integration of skin services into national health systems is crucial for more efficient and effective management. Strengthening primary healthcare and expanding training for frontline healthcare workers are key strategies.

Call to Action:

  1. Share our Background Information Document with your Minister for Health or Minister for Foreign Affairs

  2. Join the other Member States who are leading in the prioritization of skin diseases. Reach out to us and we will connect you. 

  3. For more information please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Skin Diseases as a Global Public Health Priority

Download our Background Information Document

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