noQuestion | Doubtful.

Will GiveWell fund Community salt substitution by 1st January 2027?

Main Draft
23rd Oct
Josh Hart
Josh Hart 13:54

GiveWell has recommended grants to over 10 charities over the years. They are currently investigating 12 charity areas with other areas of research in the pipeline including Community salt substitution

The following information is a summary of GiveWell’s explanation of the topic.

“Cardiovascular disease is the most common cause of death worldwide, and high blood pressure is one of its primary causes. Sodium intake, primarily from table salt, tends to increase blood pressure, while potassium intake tends to decrease it. Community salt substitution is the replacement of normal table salt with a salt substitute, in which potassium chloride replaces a portion of the sodium chloride, for all members of a community. The intention of salt substitution is to reduce the risk of diseases related to high blood pressure…

Overall, [GiveWell] believe[s] there is fairly strong evidence that community salt substitution reduces cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. This evidence comes from two sources: direct evidence [**\] ** that salt substitution reduces cardiovascular mortality in people at high cardiovascular risk, and indirect evidence [\] that salt substitution reduces blood pressure in whole communities, which other evidence suggests should reduce cardiovascular mortality and morbidity…

Potassium-enriched salt substitute may harm people with severe kidney disease. Estimates suggest that this effect is greatly outweighed by the benefit of potassium-enriched salt substitute, but we remain uncertain about these estimates…

A preliminary cost-effectiveness analysis suggests that community salt substitution is below the range of cost-effectiveness of the opportunities that we expect to direct marginal donations to…This cost-effectiveness analysis is in an early stage and therefore is not directly comparable to the cost-effectiveness analyses of our top charities.“