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"World Health Minute" 29 May, 2017

News Highlights
Zika hit India in January, Government kept silent Almost six months after three cases of the deadly Zika virus were reported from Ahmedabad in Gujarat, the World Health Organization has finally made the information public, the Indian health ministry is yet to comment on the issue and there are questions as to why was only one case acknowledged in an answer to parliament given by the government on March 17th when they were aware of at least three cases at that point
Congo`s Ebola outbreak threatens CAR after violence forces thousands across border An Ebola outbreak in the DRC could spread to the neighbouring CAR, where militia violence has forced thousands of people to flee across the border, the World Health Organization said, this is because recent attacks by militias in the CAR border town of Bangassou have driven about 2,750 people into Bas-Uele, raising the risk that the Ebola outbreak could spread across the border. WHO is worried as these refugees are now close to the epicentre of the ebola outbreak
Sri Lanka`s deadly floods could worsen dengue crisis: NGO Save the Children said that the devastating floods in Sri Lanka could exacerbate the dengue crisis there, the NGO said its teams were assessing the humanitarian needs and were ready to respond, including by distributing hygiene items to prevent the spread of disease, supporting damaged schools to allow them re-open, distributing safe drinking water and providing psychosocial support to children
Cholera kills dozens in west Sudan A cholera epidemic in Sudan’s White Nile has reportedly killed 62 people and infected almost 1,800, since the first cases were recorded last month, so, activists protested in front of the federal health ministry in the capital Khartoum, demanding the government declare the outbreak an epidemic in those areas and respond effectively
Preparedness, surveillance and response
Zika hit India in January, Government kept silent
Almost six months after three cases of the deadly Zika virus were reported from Ahmedabad in Gujarat, the World Health Organization has finally made the information public, the Indian health ministry is yet to comment on the issue and there are questions as to why was only one case acknowledged in an answer to parliament given by the government on March 17th when they were aware of at least three cases at that point
Congo`s Ebola outbreak threatens CAR after violence forces thousands across border
An Ebola outbreak in the DRC could spread to the neighbouring CAR, where militia violence has forced thousands of people to flee across the border, the World Health Organization said, this is because recent attacks by militias in the CAR border town of Bangassou have driven about 2,750 people into Bas-Uele, raising the risk that the Ebola outbreak could spread across the border. WHO is worried as these refugees are now close to the epicentre of the ebola outbreak
Sri Lanka`s deadly floods could worsen dengue crisis: NGO
Save the Children said that the devastating floods in Sri Lanka could exacerbate the dengue crisis there, the NGO said its teams were assessing the humanitarian needs and were ready to respond, including by distributing hygiene items to prevent the spread of disease, supporting damaged schools to allow them re-open, distributing safe drinking water and providing psychosocial support to children
Cholera kills dozens in west Sudan
A cholera epidemic in Sudan’s White Nile has reportedly killed 62 people and infected almost 1,800, since the first cases were recorded last month, so, activists protested in front of the federal health ministry in the capital Khartoum, demanding the government declare the outbreak an epidemic in those areas and respond effectively
WHO says India reports cases of Zika virus
India has reported cases of the Zika virus, WHO said, on May 15th India’s health ministry reported three confirmed cases from the western state of Gujarat, these cases were detected during testing in February and November last year, while one was detected in January, according to a health ministry statement
Casos de chikungunya aumentam 88% em um mês em todo País
The number of chikungunya cases across Brazil increased by 88% in just a month from 43,010 to 80,949 suspected cases, according to the latest epidemiological report, despite this increase, numbers are still lower than last year when 179,026 cases were recorded. There have been 13 deaths so far, in the whole of 2016 there were 196 deaths from the disease. The highest concentration of cases is in the north east region of the country
Se incrementa a 27 cifra de fallecidos por dengue en Piura
The number of dengue cases in the Piura region of Peru for this year has now reached 28,151 suspected cases, with 5,510 cases confirmed, according to the most recent epidemiological report, and the number of deaths from dengue has now risen to 27 people
Dengue: en Formosa confirman 100 casos
Health authorities confirmed that Formosa has 100 cases of dengue fever and that a further 300 are under investigation as contagious Zika has been found in Ingeniero Juarez and is also suspected in Clorinda. A local lawmaker did question as to whether numbers are under reported, saying a local laboratory has hinted that there could be around 700 patients with dengue
Thailand reports 19 dengue-related deaths to date
Thai health authorities have reported 11,062 cases of dengue fever, hemorrhagic dengue fever and dengue shock syndrome accounting for 19 deaths across the country so far. 5,704 dengue fever cases were reported from 77 provinces with no deaths, 5.194 DHF cases were reported from 76 provinces accounting for 4 deaths and 164 DSS cases were reported from 40 provinces including 15 fatalities
Dengue no da tregua a Veracruz, es el secundo estado con mas casos en el pais
The Mexican state of Veracruz now ranks the second highest in Mexico for the number of confirmed dengue cases with 144, according to an epidemiological report from health authorities. Chiapas has 217 confirmed cases, Nuevo Leon (138), Guerrero (101) and Michoacan (79). These numbers are down on a year earlier and deaths in the country are lower too with 3 this year compared to 11 by the same time last year
Dengue cases up 96% in Bacolod
The City Health Office recorded a 96% increase in dengue cases in the first five months of 2017 with 310 patients compared to the period a year earlier when there were only 158 cases. There have been five deaths from dengue so far this year compared with one a year earlier
Oahu Mumps Outbreak Continues With 3 New Cases Confirmed
The state department of health announced it has three new cases of mumps confirmed bringing the total number of confirmed mumps cases on the island to 57, with one confirmed on Kauai. None of the mumps cases to date has resulted in hospitalisation. The CDC said nationwide there have been 2,570 mumps cases reported this year across 42 states
Dengue soaring: Two major campaigns from Thursday
The dengue death toll in Sri Lanka rose to 130 this week with more than 50,000 cases reported islandwide so far this year, according to the National Dengue Control Unit, most cases come from 12 districts: Colombo, Gampaha, Galle, Matara, Kurunegala, Puttalam, Ratnapura, Kegalle, Jaffna, Batticaloa and Trincomale
Honduras: Casos de dengue suman 1,800 en primer trimestre
Overall there have been 2,200 cases of dengue, zika and chikungunya during the first part of 2017, whereas numbers are dramatically down for zika and chikungunya for last year, when chikungunya registered tens of thousands of cases, this year it has only seen 200 cases. Only dengue has increased year-on-year and remains stubbornly high
As dengue arrives early in Delhi, municipal bodies rush to get their act together
With 38 cases of dengue reported in May, the highest for a month over the last six years, the vector-borne diseases have seen an early onset this year, official websites have been updated for details of ‘domestic breeding checkers’ in any locality and a schedule of their visits to different colonies has been added
Dengue: Reportan 221 infectados en la región Cajamarca
Health authorities in Cajamarca confirmed the region has 221 recorded cases of dengue as of Week 19, according to the regional health authorities, most of those affected are concentrated in the Jaen, San Ignacio and Contumaza districts
Swine Flu Claims 221 Lives In Maharashtra Since January; 58 In Pune Alone
Swine flu has claimed as many as 221 lives in Maharashtra so far this year with Pune accounting for more than a quarter of all the fatalities, local health officials told the press. During this period 15,003 patients exhibited swine flu like symptoms and were treated. Of these patients, 1,106 tested positive for the deadly virus
Turkana on alert after cholera outbreak in camp
Refugees in Kakuma camp have been treated for cholera following an outbreak which has hit 25 camp inhabitants, as yet no deaths have been recorded and the patients have been isolated and hospitalised to prevent further spread of the disease
Áncash: confirman cinco casos de dengue en Nepeña
There are some 613 people affected by dengue in the Ancash region of Peru, with a further 647 suspected dengue cases during April still to be analysed and confirmed. Nearby La Libertad province is also seeing high numbers of dengue cases with 1,900 recorded
Tracking Zika: Virus hit earlier than thought in Brazil, Florida
Studies using gene sequencing equipment to trace the path of zika through the Americas show the virus arrived a year before the first case was detected in Brazil, and several months before it was first reported in Florida. The findings, published in Nature, draw upon 200 zika virus genome sequences collected from infected individuals and mosquitoes that transmit the virus
Health systems
Health ministry employees to get salaries after 11 months
The Pakistan Ministry of National Health Services, Regulations and Coordination has finally issued a notification to ensure the release of 11-month pending salaries of the employees of the ministry. All the employees associated with the National Aid Control Programme have not been paid their salary since June of last year
Cutting HIV and Aids treatments costs in South Africa
About 15% of India’s pharmaceutical exports arrive in Africa and in South Africa, in particular, with the availability of generic antiretrovirals from India leading to a significant drop in the cost of treatment for millions of people with HIV or Aids. The BBC’s Taurai Maduma reports on Africa Business Report for the BBC World Service
Chemists to go on all-India strike on May 30 against `stringent rules`
On May 30th, chemists across India will go on a strike in protest against strict regulations on sale of medicines and their declining margins, the All India Organization of Chemists and Druggists said they have been forced to resort to strike after their representations to the government went unheeded, and that they object to e-pharmacies, which they say can lead to the circulation of counterfeit drugs
Moving beyond malaria – the FT asks Novartis’s Joe Jimenez three questions
Joe Jimenez, head of Novartis which provides the leading anti-malarial treatment Coartem, is asked three questions about the future for drug pricing by the Financial Times’ Andrew Jack
Kenya submits US$355 million funding request to global fund
Kenya’s health ministry said it has submitted a funding request application to the Global Fund seeking US$355m to finance healthcare interventions in the country for the 2018-2020 period. The ministry said most of the grant will be used to procure commodities and lifesaving medicine for HIV, TB and Malaria
WHO announces new flagship programs for African region over next two years
WHO’s Regional Director for Africa announced four new flagship programmes for the region over the next two years, including a major push on adolescent health and the creation of regional emergency hubs, additionally, there’ll also be mandatory performance deliverables, to which WHO offices in the African region will be held accountable
‘Wrong to say India’s drug quality is substandard’: Health Minister JP Nadda to TNM
The News Minute interviews Indian Health Minister, JP Nadda, with India having taken a tough stand supporting the delinking of research costs and the accessibility of medicines, he is asked about what India is doing to make affordable medicines a reality
Narendra Modi’s generics drugs plan worries health experts, pharma sector
India’s plan to bring in a law to ensure doctors prescribe medicines only by their generic names risks proliferating the sale of substandard drugs in a country where regulation is already lax, doctors and pharmaceutical executives say
In Nagaland, Missing Health Services Are a Matter of Life and Death
The Wire tells the story of how massive central funding for health and development in healthcare often goes missing on the ground, leaving residents in remote districts to struggle through and fend for themselves, it does so through the eyes of a farmer from eastern Nagaland
WHO Official: Medicines Should Not Be Priced At The Value Of A Life
WHO assistant director general, Marie-Paule Kieny, urged people to moved away from the notion of value-based pricing and towards fair pricing, telling WHA delegates the WHO is beginning to work on this, then the discussion moves on through pricing of vaccines to other medical products as WHO tries to get to grips with the basics of pricing, which may not necessarily be low if it can be shown it is expensive to produce. Similarly, the notion of delinking the price from the costs of R&D is a further issue, push funding for research being one way to counteract this
President Moon Jae-In lets South Korean aid workers tackle malaria in North Korea
Mr Moon’s government has given permission for a humanitarian group to resume its work fighting malaria in North Korea, 18 months after all such contact with Pyongyang was banned after its fourth nuclear test. The Korean Sharing Movement will be allowed to resume its work in areas adjacent to the border between the two countries. If authorities in the north agree, KSM will provide fumigation trucks to exterminate mosquitoes as well as mosquito nets, malaria drugs and kits for diagnosing the disease
Communicable diseases
German kindergartens must report parents for refusing vaccine advice under new law
Germany will pass a law next week obliging kindergartens to inform the authorities if parents fail to provide evidence they have received advice from their doctor on vaccinating their children, the health ministry said. Parents refusing the advice risk fines of up to 2,500 Euros under the law expected to come into force on June 1st. Vaccination rules are being tightened across Europe, where a decline in immunization has caused a spike in diseases such as measles, chicken pox and mumps, according to the ECDC
HIV/AIDS prevalence on the rise in East Africa
Stigmatization and discrimination among commercial sex workers, transgender, prisoners and homosexuals has been identified as the main cause for the high prevalence of HIV/Aids in East Africa, according to findings from a workshop on Kenya National Advocacy, aimed at reducing violence and discrimination against these key populations. When these groups are stigmatized and discriminated against they do not have the incentive to seek health services and legal protection and this can be an important factor in propagating the infection
Sierra Leone News: 4 out of 10 children in Salone have malaria – Dr. Samuel Smith
Malaria Programme Manager of the Ministry of Health, Dr Samuel Smith, said that four out of ten children that visit the medical centres across the country have malaria. He made this statement during a press briefing launching Maternal and Child Health Week
Governments must invest in pre-exposure prophylaxis to end HIV/Aids
PrEP is an additional anti-retroviral medication tool which can be used to prevent the acquisition of HIV infection by uninfected people, particularly those that are at substantial risk of infection. Among the most vulnerable groups are women and young girls, gay and bisexual men, commercial sex workers and those that are in violent relationships and street kids. When taken consistently, PrEP has been shown to reduce risk of infection by up to 92%, Southern African News calls for governments to work with aid agencies to make PrEP affordable for those who need it most
British Army`s ability to fight undermined by rampant STDs
Nearly one in ten British troops have contracted a sexually transmitted disease, new figures reveal. Almost 12,000 troops of an armed force strength of 140,000 have been diagnosed with one form of STD or another in the last five years, highlighting widespread infections caused by unprotected sex within the armed forces
Software to help stop spread of TB
The Indian Embassy to Cambodia has given a $50,000 grant to a project to help control the spread of tuberculosis in the kingdom. The money is to develop software which will be able to track the intake of TB medication and generate alerts if a patient misses a dose. It is hoped to reduce treatment delay by 3.4 times. It will also improve data accuracy and increase case detection
AIDS charity on verge of collapse; 600 families under threat
The Saudi Charity Association for AIDS Patients (SCAAP) in Jeddah is struggling with its finances as many benefactors have abandoned the charitable organization. This has curtailed the charity’s operations and only a small number of people now benefit from its food baskets programme
Non communicable diseases
U.S. Alzheimer`s deaths jump 54 percent; many increasingly dying at home
US deaths from Alzheimer’s disease rose by more than 50% from 1999 to 2014, and rates are expected to continue to rise, reflecting the nation’s aging population and increasing life expectancy, American researchers said. In addition, a larger proportion of people with Alzheimer’s are dying at home rather than a medical facility, according to the report released by the U.S. CDC. Alzheimer’s is the sixth-leading cause of death in the U.S., accounting for 3.6% of all deaths in 2014, the report said
The global alcohol business is expanding in Africa and that’s bad news for health
The alcohol industry is under pressure and needs to develop new sources of growth and profit; developed world markets are close to saturation so expansion into developing economies is the new play with the $103bn merger between SAB Miller and AB InBev a good reference point. As a result, exposure to alcohol in African countries is expected to increase in the next few years and with it come alcohol-related health and social problems
Move to check kidney diseases in Cuttack
Following 391 deaths due to renal failure in the last 11 years, the Odisha state government has swung into action to prevent people falling prey to kidney ailments in Narasinghpur and Badama blocks of Cuttack district. According to health department statistics, 1,187 people in 163 villages have been affected by kidney disease since 2006, while 366 have succumbed to it, 821 are undergoing treatment. The health minister said three dialysis machines will be provided and three semi-auto analysers to test blood and urine of suspected patients would be made available
Obesity, diabetes associated with increased risk for severe malaria infection
Researchers conducted a nationwide observational study of imported malarial infection in Sweden over a 20 year period from 1995-2015 to assess whether NCDs were associated with severe malarial infection. The analysis included 937 adults with malaria. They concluded that comorbidity, particularly diabetes, and obesity were significant risk factors for severe infection among non-immune travellers and immigrants from endemic countries in Sweden with malaria
Red meat tied to higher risk of dying from many diseases
Eating more red meat is associated with an increased risk of dying from eight common diseases, including cancer, diabetes and heart disease, as well as all other causes of death, according to a recent study. Researchers examined data on almost 537,000 adults aged 50 to 71 and found that people who consumed the most red meat had a 26% higher chance of dying from a variety of causes than those who ate the least. People who ate most white meat, including poultry and fish, were 25% less likely to die of all causes, than people who consumed the least, researchers reported in the BMJ
Foot mat may help predict who will get a common diabetes complication
An experimental foot-temperature monitoring system might one day be able to detect when diabetic patients are developing foot ulcers, a common complication that can lead to infections and amputations, a small study suggests. Researchers tested a smart mat designed to use variations in temperature at different points on the foot as a predictor of recurring foot ulcers in 129 patients who had this problem before. Skin temperatures typically increase as ulcers develop
Walking linked to improved brain function
A moderate intensity walking regime may reduce symptoms of mild cognitive impairment that are linked to poor blood vessel health in the brain, a small study suggests. Participants in a small study with vascular dementia who walked three hours per week for six months had improved reaction times and other signs of improved brain function, the Canadian research team reported
How tobacco, death and taxes are intrinsically linked
Tobacco is killing millions of people every year, the Hindustan Times says ‘it is time to connect the dots, improve law enforcement and wean both tobacco cultivators and users away from the product.’ India banned food from being served in smoking areas in all restaurants. Minors will not be allowed in smoking zones, which now need to carry a clear Dante-like warning at the door declaring those entering the fumy room risk health and life. There’s a need for raised taxes and then upgraded regulation and enforcement to crack down on potential smuggling, plus cessation services for smokers
`Heat-not-burn` cigarettes still release cancer-causing chemicals
A new type of heat-not-burn cigarettes release some of the same cancer-causing chemicals found in traditional cigarette smoke, a recent experiment suggests. Researchers looked at the chemical compounds in smoke from traditional cigarettes and from the new devices. The smoke released by the heat-not-burn cigarette had 84% of the nicotine found in traditional cigarettes, researchers reported in JAMA Internal Medicine
Promoting health through the life course
Why ‘gig health’ matters
Those who make their living in the gig economy, generally working for app-based platforms that match consumer needs with workers who can fulfil them are regarded as being in precarious or contingent employment. Now attention is turning to the health and wellbeing of this fast growing workforce, which numbers about 1.3m in the UK. A recent Italian study indicated those on temporary contracts are more likely to use prescription medication for mental health conditions like depression. Gig workers are not generally eligible for sick pay or compensation from injury. Low pay, low support, high demand mean long hours to make a basic income stoking future physical and mental health issues
Middle-management `disconnected` from Sustainable Development Goals, report finds
A study released by Frost & Sullivan and GlobeScan on behalf of CSR Europe found that while SDGs are being embraced by business leaders and sustainability professionals, a lack of collaboration with other areas of business is stunting progress towards these goals. The report says top management are aware of SDGs while middle-management and wider employees are disconnected from the narrative
US Gives Up Its Attempt To Prevent Listing Gender Equality As A Human Right
Leaders from the G7-countries will sign a statement that includes a reference to human rights when defining gender equality, a big diplomatic victory for Canada. Ivanka Trump is said to have played a significant role in helping leaders to shift Donald Trump from an opponent to support the proposition
Violence in central Congo leaves 400,000 children prey to deadly malnutrition - UN
Spiralling violence in the central Democratic Republic of the Congo has disrupted farming and shut down health centres, leaving hundreds of thousands of children vulnerable to life-threatening malnutrition, UNICEF said. An insurrection in the Greater Kasai region has left hundreds dead and uprooted more than 1m people since last July, the UN warned of a dramatically deteriorating situation
Hunger to hit emergency levels in Ethiopia despite rains
Hunger is likely to reach emergency levels in Ethiopia and the number in need of food aid will rise further, experts said, as drought has decimated livestock, rains have been erratic and aid is in short supply. The number of Ethiopians needing food aid will rise beyond the current 7.7m, with hunger reaching the fourth ‘emergency level’ on a five-phase scale, where the fifth level is famine
Rural water access: why should countries follow Paraguay’s lead?
With more than 94% of the rural population able to access safe water, nations across Latin America and beyond should consider learning from Paraguay’s success story. Paraguay moved its sanitation and water agency to the auspices of the health department. It set up model community-led boards run by volunteers in the more remote rural areas to manage water and sanitation. They recover the maintenance and operating costs through setting water tariffs and repay a portion of capital costs used to build the initial infrastructure back to the treasury
Mexico urges wealthy nations to help poorer states cut disaster risk
Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto told the start of a UN conference in Cancun that cutting human, economic and infrastructure losses caused by disasters is imperative. Threats from earthquakes and storms recognise no national boundaries or frontiers or orders of government and ninety percent of deaths happen in low or middle-income countries. Wealthy nations need to help the poorer nations that will face the sharp-end of climate change afford to develop the resilience in planning for these disasters
Domestic violence pushes Central American women to flee for their lives - U.N.
Rampant domestic violence is forcing women to flee their homes in Central America, the UN refugee agency said, as it urged governments to work together to address the reasons for migration in the region. Hundreds of thousands of people, including women and children travelling alone, leave the ‘Northern Triangle’ of nations; El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala to escape gang violence and poverty. Many head north to the United States to seek refuge and a better life
Funding shortfall hits starving in northeast Nigeria
Lack of funding is forcing aid agencies to cut feeding for starving people in northeast Nigeria, the UN said, warning of growing pressure in resources as refugees return. The World Food Programme said nearly two million people were living on the brink of famine in this remote region, which has been devastated by Boko Haram violence since 2009. According to OCHA, 5.2m people could need life-saving food aid in three northeast states from June to August
As surgeries triple, Kenya aims to end shame of fistula
Kenya’s hopes of ending incontinence caused by fistula, one of the most serious childbirth injuries, are rising as more women are receiving surgery as more local surgeons are being trained, and awareness of the stigmatizing condition grows. Fistula repairs have tripled to 1,500 a year nationwide since the start of the decade, according to Gynocare, one of Kenya’s leading fistula treatment centres. The Fistula Foundation has helped train six more surgeons and aims to provide 1,200 free surgeries in three years. It is committed to helping end fistula in a generation
Island nation Kiribati says in dire need of cash to combat climate change
The Pacific Island nation of Kiribati is in dire need of aid as drought pushes it closer to declaring a state of emergency as it struggles with rising seas and other effects of climate change which could cost billions. Comprised of 33 coral islands, Kiribati is on average just 2 metres above sea level. It has seen the ocean swallow chunks of its coastline, raising the prospect it may be the first nation to become a casualty of global warming
Gay rights in China get fillip from Taiwan same-sex marriage ruling
Taiwan’s decision giving same-sex couple the right to marry has proven to be a shot in the arm for the gay rights movement in Asia, but even so, it is still likely to be many years before China approves similar measures, amid deep-rooted opposition in some quarters. Wednesday’s ruling may prompt legal action by activists in places like Thailand, home to Southeast Asia’s most vibrant lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communities to travel a similar path
Stakes And Opportunities High For New Head Of World Health Organization
Executive Director of Malaria No More UK, James Whiting, calls on Tedros Adhanom to “seize the once in a lifetime opportunity to end malaria within a generation.” He says that there is a malaria game plan to build on the gains made and to stop malaria regaining ground; now WHO needs to lead the drive to finish off malaria for
The top job, a tough job
“All roads leads to universal coverage. This will be my central priority” newly elected WHO director general, Tedros Adhanom told World Health Assembly members. He also promised to respond to future global emergencies “rapidly and effectively”
WHO’s new African leader could be shot in the arm for poorer countries
David Sanders, Emeritus Professor, School of Public Health, University of the Western Cape, explains to The Conversation Africa some of the challenges the new director general of the World Health Organization faces. He mentions the U.S.$456m deficit so cuts to major programmes are likely, as are retrenchments. This also raises the question of large-scale donor fund influence. It also brings up funding on programmes such as that for NCDs and the influence of large food companies and WHO’s apparent opposition to getting food regulations in place to arrest the consumption of unhealthy food
WHO DG: New head ‘Dr Tedros’ has his work cut out for him
The job ahead of Tedros Adhanom is so broad that one step needs to be simply prioritising what the WHO should be doing and what it should not be doing. It needs to clarify this and then explain how it will support other actors – state, intergovernmental, non-governmental and foundations – who are already engaged in tackling these issues. He needs to restore the reputation of the organization after its fumbling of the 2014 Ebola epidemic in West Africa and to win the funding the organization needs
The WHO has a new chief. Will India now find its voice at the global health organisation?
Tedros’ election is both an opportunity and a challenge for India. India is in the position of being able to offer pivotal leadership for the Global South, promoting its interests; access to medicines by addressing trade and intellectual property barriers, pressing for technology transfer and capacity building and measures that curb the interest of multinational corporations from the North in industries related to medicines, food and beverages, alcohol and tobacco
New WHO head seeks U.S. bipartisan support for global health
The new head of the World Health Organization voiced his hope that bipartisan support would prevail in the US Congress to fund global health initiatives, despite deep budget cuts proposed by the Trump administration. Tedros Adhanom also said the UN agency would be seeking new donors. He also said donors should not suddenly pull out of existing programmes and that there should be a gradual exit strategy to avoid shocks
Delegates at the 70th World Health Assembly adopt their initial decisions
The 70th World Health Assembly adopted its resolutions on poliomyelitis, the Pandemic Influenza Preparedness Framework and human resources for health. It also approved a programme budget consisting of U.S.$4,421.5m which includes a 3% (U.S.$28m) increase in member state assessed contributions in 2018-19 and increased investments in the WHO Health Emergencies Programme (U.S.$69.1m) and in combatting antimicrobial resistance (U.S.$23.2m)
A conversation with Laurie Garrett about the road ahead for the WHO
Humanosphere interviewed senior fellow for global health at the Council of Foreign Relations, Laurie Garrett, about how the underfunded and over strapped World Health Organization adapts to the changes and challenges it faces
Ethiopia`s Tedros Faces Challenges as New WHO Chief
Tedros wants to broaden the WHO’s funding strategy and raise money not only for the agency but for organizations that share common goals, including the Global Fund, the World Bank, GAVI and the Vaccine Alliance. It quotes Tedros from an opinion piece he wrote for The BMJ Journal in which he argued “WHO needs to move away from vertical funding to basket funds that can be used for broad health priorities determined by its member states
How did Tedros win at WHO but Amina lose at the AU?
The Star Kenya looks at the campaigns of Tedros Adhanom and Amina Mohamed to secure the top job at WHO and the African Union Commission. One successful (Tedros) and one not (Amina): it seeks the answer as to what Tedros did right (hiring a professional lobbying firm) and what Amina failed to do
WHO`s newly elected chief reaffirms one-China principle
Tedros Adhanom told Xinhua that he would abide by the One-China Principle as enshrined in the related UN General Assembly resolution and the World Health Assembly resolution when handling issues in the WHO which are related to China’s Taiwan
WHO wants to tap Malaysia’s medical expertise, says Health D-G
The Malaysian health director Dr Abdullah said on his Facebook page that newly elected WHO director general Tedros Adhanom was particularly fascinated with the progress of Malaysia’s work on Hepatitis C curative treatment in collaboration with Drug for Neglected Diseases initiatives. He said WHO is looking into harnessing out expertise on this unique model of the research ecosystem in Malaysia to bring down the cost of medicine
Opinion: How new Director-General Tedros must modernize WHO’s engagement with the world
Devex addresses some of the issues confronting Tedros Adhanom in its follow up to the elections. It points to donors paying their assessed contributions which requires reform. Philanthropic initiatives are important partners in developing solutions to global health challenges and WHO needs to recognise them as such and bring them into the WHO fold. It needs more proactive, coordinated and transparent communication about its work and its achievements which will raise funding and bolster support for WHO’s actions