Global Health Weekly News Round-up

World Breastfeeding Week is from 01 August 2012 to 08 August 2012. It commemorates the Innocenti Declaration made by WHO and UNICEF policy makers in August 1990 to protect promote and support breastfeeding.

Politics and Policies:

  • The United Kingdom government is set to become the first country in the world to provide all children free of charge with a comprehensive flu vaccination program.
  • Ugandan health ministry says it needs Sh2 Billion to fight Ebola hemorrhagic fever.
  • Rwanda moves to close down children’s institutions and improves its childcare system.
  • Massachusetts passes Health Cost Control Bill. It aims to save $200 billion over the next 15 years by linking health care cost increases to the growth of the state’s economy.
  • Arizona delays Medicaid expansion decision.
  • International Tobacco Control Policy Evaluation Project (ITC Project) launched a new report on the effectiveness of tobacco control policies in Uruguay.

Programs:

  • United States Department of Agriculture and Food and Drug Administration partner on food safety booklets to help those with compromised immune systems to prevent food borne illness.
  • The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved first generic versions of Singular to treat asthma and allergies.
  • FDA approves Zaltrap for treatment of metastatic colorectal cancer in adults.
  • The UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and its partners are scaling up efforts to reverse the ‘alarming’ rates of malnutrition, disease and death in two camps hosting Sudanese refugees in South Sudan.
  • Tullow Oil gives Sh100 million to the Uganda’s Ministry of Health to help to fight against the deadly Ebola disease.
  • The Global Campaign for Microbicides (GCM) which has been housed at PATH since its inception nearly 15 years ago will close operations in September.
  • Group Health teams with hospital system in Pacific Northwest.
  • United States announces $12 million more in the Syrian humanitarian aid. The U.S. is providing food, water, medicine, clothing and hygiene kits.
  • The United Nations office has announced that North Korea needs immediate food aid due to flood.
  • The World Health Organization (WHO) has issued its bulletin (online) for August.
  • Gilead Sciences inks deals with 3 Indian companies including Ranbaxy laboratories for low-cost HIV drug in developing countries.

 

 Research:

  • According to a research, diacetyl – artificial butter flavoring agent is linked to key Alzheimer’s disease process.
  • A study reveals that clusters of congenital anomalies are likely to go unnoticed due to lack of nationwide surveillance.
  • A study published in Health Care Management Review reports that mandatory individual insurance coverage in Massachusetts was followed by a significant near-term drop in hospital productivity.
  • A study suggests that there is a link between allergies and reduced risk of a serious type of cancer that starts in brain.
  • A study published in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology demonstrates that a new drug is effective in a common kidney disease.
  • A study done by an undergraduate student, published in Analytical methods journal could lead to a simpler and more accurate way to test for prostate cancer.
  • A report published in The EMBO Journal show that intellectual disability due to Fragile X and Down syndromes involve similar molecular pathway.
  • A team of Spanish and Italian researchers in their experiment showed how the extracts from strawberry protect against ultraviolet radiation as well as increasing its viability and reducing damage to DNA.
  • Findings of a study suggest that students with strong hearts and lungs may make better grades.
  • A study published in Hepatology journal provides a new approach to treat acute liver failure.
  • A study published in Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics states that urban outdoor air pollution causes an estimated 1.3 million deaths per year worldwide.
  • Researchers state that certain jobs dads do are linked to higher risk of birth defects. These jobs included artists, photographer and photo processors, drivers and landscapers and grounds men.
  • A study done by the researchers from Boston Children’s Hospital state that social deprivation has a measurable effect on brain of children. They suggest that positive interventions can partially reverse these changes.
  • According to a research published in BMJ Open, restricting the amount of time spent seated every day to less than 3 hours might boost the life expectancy of US adults by 2 years.
  • According to a group of Korean researchers a significant portion of people who receive cardiopulmonary resuscitation may end up with broken ribs or other bones.
  • Researchers have found that the resins not only boost the athletic performance but also prevent DNA damage due to oxidative damage prior to strenuous activities which are linked with several types of cancer and heart disease.

Diseases & Disasters:

  • FDA warns consumers not to eat cantaloupes from Burch Equipment LLC of North Carolina because of possible contamination with Listeria monocytogenes (L.mono).
  • Death toll due to deadly Ebola virus is rising in Uganda. It has risen to 17. Rwanda health ministry has called upon general public not to panic.
  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a warning about a new pig flu virus.
  • Flood affects life in North Korea. It has killed 170 people and about 200000 people have fled from their homes.

 

Global Health News Last Week

SECTION NEWS
The Advocacy/Policy Committee would like to invite you to participate in our first Advocacy Day, led in partnership with the Global Health Council. The day, scheduled for Thursday, November 3rd, 2011, immediately following the annual meeting in Washington, D.C., will be an opportunity for us to voice support for a continued focus on international health to our elected officials. With the intense Congressional pressure to cut the budget, our voices can make a real difference. As a participant during this exciting day, you will be provided with training materials on effective advocacy techniques to ensure your message is clearly heard. Even if you do not have advocacy experience, you need not hesitate to sign up because you will be teamed with others. Please consider joining your fellow International Health Section members on Thursday, November 3rd, 2011 on Capitol Hill to advocate for a healthy globe. Interested parties should register here. Please note that registration will close on October 14th. Any questions should be directed to Peter Freeman, Advocacy/Policy Committee Chair, at pffreeman@gmail.com or 773.318.4842.


POLITICS AND POLICY

PROGRAMS

  • Sanitation and hygiene are sensitive and unpopular subjects, but funding them is essential to fighting disease, ensuring basic rights and meeting millennium development goals.
  • The Gates Foundation’s European director Joe Cerrell comes to the defense of the beleaguered Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria, arguing to improve on its “impressive record and ensure that millions more lives are saved and the progress against global disease is secured for generations to come.”
  • Almost four months into the Horn of Africa crisis, aid agencies are involved in much soul-searching as to whether they could have responded more quickly to the drought and famine.

RESEARCH AND INNOVATION

  • A Japanese company, the Sumitomo Chemical Company, unveiled a new kind of insecticide treated bed net at a product launch in Kenya.
  • Pregnant women who load up on fruits, veggies and whole grains have a reduced risk of having babies with neural tube defects, such as spina bifida or cleft lip, according to one of the first studies to look at the connection between diet and birth defects.
  • A study by Stanford researchers has determined that infant health can be improved when a mother has a low-fat high fiber diet up to a year prior to getting pregnant.
  • A study published in the British Medical Journal says that if current smoking trends continue until 2050, TB related deaths will jump by 40 million.
  • Though young, there is a lot of potential in what mHealth can offer in developing countries. Amanda Glassman shares some ways that it can be improved.
  • Researchers at the University of Washington have reported some highly problematic findings regarding a common method of birth control in eastern and southern Africa. They are problematic in that they indicate a popular injectable hormone, Depo-Provera, used by perhaps 140 million women worldwide (and often in poor settings) signficantly raises a woman’s risk of HIV infection.
  • Test subjects in a Spanish HIV vaccine trial have shown a 90 percent immune response.

DISEASES AND DISASTERS

  • A cohort of American and British researchers say that by investing in AIDS treatments, money can be saved in the long term.
  • What should be the top priorities in global health? Infectious diseases? Neglected tropical diseases (NTDs)? Non-communicable diseases (NCDs)? A research scientist wonders at the confusion amid this sea of bad acronyms.
  • Former US President Carter is leading the fight against guinea worm making a request that WHO members provide $93 million in funding to wipe out the disease.  DfID has committed to support the push against guinea worm by announcing it will allocating £20 million to the effort.
  • The business news channel CNBC has published an extensive report on the lucrative and growing Dangerous World of Counterfeit Prescription Drugs.