There are a great number of diseases which can be passed from one person to another, but which of these contagious diseases is the biggest health burden in each country? NYRequirements, a health and nursing education provider, has analysed burden of disease estimates from the World Heath Organization's (WHO), looking at 40 transmittable diseases to see which types caused the most years of lost life and lost healthy life - that is, due to being in a state of poor health or disability due to the disease.
Measured in 'Disability-adjusted life years' (DALYs), the metric not only takes into account the burden of mortality, but also morbitity. As the WHO writes: "Mortality does not give a complete picture of the burden of disease borne by individuals in different populations." DALYs estimate the number of years of healthy life that are lost due to a disease in a country’s population.
As the source summarizes: "Out of the 40 communicable diseases included in our study, only six were found to be the biggest health burden throughout our list of countries: lower respiratory infections, HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, diarrheal diseases, malaria, and measles. Lower respiratory infections were found to be the biggest health burden in a majority of countries."
Note that the WHO data used for this analysis is from 2019 and therefore does not represent mortality or morbidity associated with the Covid-19 pandemic.