President's Letter

deanna saylor.jpg

Dr. Deanna R Saylor 
Associate Professor of Neurology 
Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine 
President, World Neurology Foundation
 

Dear Reader,

 

Welcome to the World Neurology Foundation (WNFO).  As the foundation’s President, it is my pleasure to introduce you to our organization.

 

As an organization, we care deeply about the people affected by neurological disorders all over the world, especially in resource-limited settings. Neurological disorders as a group are the leading cause of disability and second leading cause of mortality world-wide. However, this burden is not equally distributed, with 75% of these disorders occurring in low- and middle-income countries.  Unfortunately, these are the same countries with a shortage in the neurological workforce necessary to care for people with these disorders. According to data from the World Health Organization, there are nearly 5 neurologists for every 100,000 people in the population of high-income countries, whereas that number declines exponentially to 0.13 neurologists per 100,000 people (or 13 neurologists for 10 million people!) for residents of lower middle-income countries and to 0.03 neurologists per 100,000 people (or 3 neurologists for 10 million people!) in low-income countries.

 

Our mission at the WNFO is to improve care for people with neurological disorders in all settings and to equip future healthcare workers and neurologists to do the same. We do this in several ways. Our Toolkits for Africa program sends basic equipment to healthcare workers in Africa needed to complete a neurological assessment so that patients receive a more comprehensive evaluation. Our Neuroshare program provides free access to virtual education on neurology topics to anyone, anywhere in the world, any time, and our webinar series features leaders in global neurology who share their experience working in the field and their hopes and aspirations for the future of the field.  We hope that this series inspires other future neurologists who will work in resource-limited settings across the globe, facilitate networking within the field, and equip those in the field with greater knowledge and resources.  

 

Finally, we are excited to partner with national organizations like the American Academy of Neurology and the American Neurological Association for the Global Neurology Consortium. The goal of this consortium is to create a single location where neurologists from high-income settings interested in becoming involved in global neurology efforts can find the resources they need to become involved. These resources include residency and fellowship directories of opportunities for advanced global neurology training, a list of funding opportunities and organizations supporting global neurology, a networking directory of neurologists within the field, a calendar with activities pertinent to global neurology, and guides on how to go about becoming more involved in several aspects of the fields.

 

We hope you find this website helpful and informative, and we welcome any suggestions you may have for further programming and resources.  Most of all, we hope you will encounter our deep passion and commitment to improving the lives of people with neurological disorders all over the world. If you are similarly inspired, we hope you will become more involved in our team, join our interactive webinars, and consider becoming a WNFO sponsor to help us continue this important work.