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IHC 2023 | Disparities in headache healthcare: a call for action

Morris Levin, MD, University of California, San Francisco, CA, discusses the inequities in headache healthcare around the world and highlights disparities in the availability of medication, practitioners, and testing for ruling out secondary causes of headaches. One striking discrepancy is the significant difference in the density of neurologists, with low-income countries having over a hundred times fewer neurologists specialized in treating complex headache disorders compared to high-income countries. There is a need for political will and collective efforts to address these inequities in healthcare. Headache disorders, being highly prevalent and disabling, deserve more attention, similar to other life-threatening illnesses. The barriers to reducing disparities include resources, the knowledge base of physicians and healthcare workers, and patient-related challenges like distrust and misconceptions. Dr Levin emphasizes the importance of education, local involvement, case discussions, and the use of motivators like economic productivity to improve headache healthcare policy. This interview took place at the International Headache Congress (IHC) 2023 in Seoul, Korea.

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