Global News Round Up

Politics & Policies

Rear Adm. Tim Ziemer, the head of global health security on the White House’s National Security Council, left the Trump administration on Tuesday.  The news was announced one day after an Ebola outbreak was declared in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

A judge in Riverside County on Tuesday overturned California’s controversial assisted death nearly two years after it took effect, ruling that the Legislature improperly passed the measure during a special session on health care funding.

When global health leaders convene in Geneva next week for the 71st World Health Assembly, they’ll gather under one banner: universal health coverage.  

The World Health Organization (WHO) announced on Tuesday that a new Ebola outbreak has emerged in the Democratic Republic of Congo — and thanks to the Trump administration, we are woefully under-equipped to deal with it.


Migrant children have specific health needs, and may face difficulties in accessing health care, but enough is known about their health service use. This study aims to describe patterns of use of health services of international migrant children and differences to respective native populations.

Although uncomplicated urinary tract infections (UTIs) are often self-limiting, most patients will be prescribed antibiotic treatment.  We assessed whether treatment with ibuprofen was non-inferior to pivmecillinam in achieving symptomatic resolution by day 4, with a non-inferiority margin of 10%.

Scientists have successfully reconstructed genomes from Stone Age and Medieval European strains of the hepatitis B virus.  This unprecedented recovery of ancient virus DNA indicates that hepatitis B was circulating in Europe at least 7,000 years ago.

Diseases & Disasters

The World Health Organization announced Friday that it hopes to deploy an experimental vaccine against the developing Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, even as the agency plans for the “worst case scenario.”

Healthy diet is not just about how many calories you consume, it’s also about how many calories you consume, it’s also about what kind of calories you consume.  A paper published this week in Obesity Reviews, Pathways and Mechanisms Linking Dietary Components to Cardiometabolic Disease: Thinking Beyond Calories, examined how calories from different foods affect the body.

The WHO and not-for-profit organization Resolve to Save Lives have teamed up to build a scheme for governments to use to tackle industrially-produced trans fats.

People who have their body clock disrupted by being awake at night risk developing mood disorders and depression.
People who ate diets full of vegetables, fruits, nuts and fish had bigger brais than their less well-nourished counterparts the large study from the Netherlands found.

Heart failure is a global health problem, affecting about 26 million people worldwide.  The disease presents a major and growing health-economic burden that currently costs the world economy 108 billion dollars every year, which accounts for both direct and indirect costs.

The Ebola virus has reared its head again, this time in the Democratic Republic of Congo. While it is impossible to predict exactly where and when the next outbreak will occur, we now know much more about how to prevent a crisis.

Dr. H.D.B Herath, Director, Anti Malaria Campaign speaks at the World Malaria Day Press event in Colombo, Sri Lanka.
In the jungle-rich landscape of Sri Lanka, mosquitoes are everywhere. But, thanks to a decades-long eradication campaign, the country hasn’t seen a single native case of malaria since 2012.

Sudan is a fragile developing country, with a low expenditure on health. It has been subjected to ongoing conflicts ever since 1956, with the Darfur crisis peaking in 2004. The conflict, in combination with the weak infrastructure, can lead to poor access to healthcare.  Hence, this can cause an increased risk of infection, greater morbidity and mortality from tuberculosis (TB).


Tools to diagnose and monitor HIV, hepatitis B and C, and tuberculosis, as well as resistance to first-line TB treatment are among the tests included in World Health Organizations’s first List of Essential In Vitro Diagnostics, released Tuesday.

Environmental Health

More than 80% of people living in urban areas that monitor air pollution are exposed to air quality levels that exceed WHO limits.  While all regions of the world are affected, populations in low-income cities are the most impacted.

Equity & Disparities

WHO recommends that every child should receive at least three doses of hepatitis B virus (HBV) vaccine, with the first dose being given ideally within 24 h of birth (referred to as HBV birth dose vaccine), regardless of burden of disease in the country.  However, despite this recommendation, only 101 (52%) of the 194 WHO member states provide universal HBV birth dose vaccination, with nine (19%) of 47 countries in the African region providing the vaccine.

A class-action lawsuit has been filed against the Canadian government on behalf of a group of Indigenous people who say they were subjected to medical experiments in residential schools and sanatoriums without their consent.

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