By Dr. Jennifer Yourkavitch and Sarah Edmonds
This Saturday brings to a close the thirtieth annual World Breastfeeding Week Campaign. The campaign, which has taken over social media with the hashtag #WBW2021, is celebrated every 1st–7th of August in commemoration of the 1990 Innocenti Declaration and aims to raise awareness and galvanize action on themes related to breastfeeding. This year’s theme “Protect Breastfeeding: A Shared Responsibility” focused on creating a warm chain of support for breastfeeding that expands beyond individual actions to include health systems, workplaces and communities at all levels of society.
Within the IH Section, we recognize the importance of breastfeeding as a public health issue in need of awareness and support. Many of our members work to increase that foundation of support, not just during World Breastfeeding Week, but in their day-to-day lives and professions, as well. One such member is Dr. Jennifer Yourkavitch, section liaison for the APHA Breastfeeding Forum, who recently shared information about her work and resources related to breastfeeding support with us:
[NOTE: The link to this guide will be updated to include the changing COVID-19 regulations within the coming week]
I also teach a class on milk expression monthly at my local birth center. And, I’m the director of Monitoring, Evaluation, and Learning for USAID’s flagship nutrition project, USAID Advancing Nutrition, which includes several initiatives to support breastfeeding worldwide. I was breastfed and my mother is an advocate. When I started breastfeeding my daughter I realized how critical support for breastfeeding is, from every part of society.
As we move forward with campaigns and long-term initiatives to improve the support and resources for people who breastfeed, Dr. Yourkavitch reminds and urges us: “We need to elevate the voices of breastfeeding people. We can’t design effective programs, advocacy strategies, or research without their input.”
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.
- 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.
- 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.
Attention IH section members! We are still in need of moderators for the scientific sessions at this year’s annual meeting. According to our program committee, the following sessions are still available:
Monday, October 31
10:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.: International Health Programs & Policy 1
2:30 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.: Act Global, Think Local: Domestic applications of international health lessons; Child Survival & Child Health 1
Tuesday, November 1
8:30 a.m. to 10:00 a.m.: Builidng Partnerships and Coalitions for better International Programs; Emerging, Re-emerging & Neglected Tropical Diseases
10:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.: International Health Communication/ Behavior Change Communication
12:30 p.m. 2:00 p.m.: HIV/AIDS 2
Wednesday, November 2
8:30 a.m. to 10:00 a.m.: HIV/AIDS 3; Innovations in International Health 2
Please contact Omar Khan (firstname.lastname@example.org) for more information, or to volunteer!
USAID celebrated its 50-year anniversary this week.
The benefits of breastfeeding are being showcased around the world
for Breast Feeding Week.
POLITICS AND POLICY
- US organizations will find it easier to deliver aid to parts of Somalia controlled by a pro-Al Qaeda group – the threat of prosecution if it ends up in the wrong hands has been reduced after an announcement by the State Department.
- Dr. Ariel Pablos-Méndez was sworn in as the new Assistant Administrator for the Global Health Bureau at the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID).
- Although Congress resolved the debt ceiling debate, the way the budget package is being shaped — particularly by combining International Affairs with defense in a single “security” category, global poverty spending is getting severely handicapped.
- Blood tests for tuberculosis (TB) diagnosis may be putting patients’ lives at risk through providing misleading results, and should not be used, according to a WHO policy statement.
- The inaugural charter of the Alliance for Oral Health Across Borders was signed at Temple University yesterday.
- Tom Paulson of Humanosphere breaks down the 2010 Gates Foundation annual report, with some interesting commentary.
- Jaclyn Schiff of UN Dispatch says we can look for more global health leadership coming from the city of Houston (my hometown!), as Dr. Peter Hotez, whom Schiff calls “an international health force of nature,” and an arm of the Sabin Vaccine Institute move there.
- The Measles Initiative today announced it has helped vaccinate one billion children in more than 60 developing countries since 2001, making significant gains in the global effort to stop measles.
- India’s health minister announced Tuesday a new initiative underway to boost the country’s rate of immunizing newborns by collecting mobile phone numbers of all pregnant mothers to monitor their babies’ vaccinations.
- A multi-resistant strain of Salmonella Kentucky could be spreading globally, suggests a study by Institut Pasteur. Case numbers have risen in Europe and the US, and infections have also been acquired in various parts of Africa and the Middle East. The strain has also been found in food animals in Africa.
- Pharmaceutical manufacturer iBio, Inc announced the successful animal testing of a malaria vaccine candidate in trials sponsored by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
- A new study in the American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene shows a relationship between a kind of river flow and cholera outbreaks.
- A new study in the Lancet shows that text messaging can be an effective tool in malaria treatment and prevention.
- PLoS Medicine published a new study on HIV/AIDS in the Middle East and North Africa. Among its key findings was the startling fact that sex between men (MSM) accounts for nearly one quarter of all new HIV infections across the region.
- According to a new study, children of depressed mothers in developing countries are 40 percent more likely to be underweight or stunted than those with mothers in good mental health.
- A cheap and portable blood test could provide a breakthrough for diagnosing infections in remote areas of the world, a scientific study says.
- Using WHO data, researchers found that children who experience abuse and develop mental health disorders are at increased risk for chronic physical problems later in life.
- A new study in the journal Nature Medicine finds that a credit card shaped device used for testing HIV, known as “Lab-on-a-Chip,” has had a successful trial run in Rwanda.
DISEASES AND DISASTERS
- Mass treatment of river blindness and lymphatic filariasis with ivermectin has been hampered by severe reactions if the patient also has Loa loa. A new map developed by WHO’s African Programme for Onchocerciasis Control will help communities identify low risk areas for Loa loa and distribute ivermectin for lymphatic filariasis control safely.
- The CDC reports that the annual number of HIV infections in the USA is holding steady at about 50,000, and that African American MSM are at particular risk.
- AIDS remains a metaphor for inequality, argues Michel Sidibe in the LA Times. In the world’s wealthier nations, where access to medicine is widespread, AIDS is becoming a chronic disease rather than a death sentence. But in the eveloping world, 1.8 million people die of AIDS each year.
- Global cholera incidence has increased since 2000, with Haiti’s large outbreak tipping the largest burden away from Africa for the first time since 1995, the World Health Organization (WHO) said Sunday.
- Tens of thousands of Somalis have died and more than half-a-million children are on the brink of starvation. Western aid isn’t flowing to where the worst of the famine is — partly due to the “war on terror.”
- The head of World Food Program in Ethiopia says the country’s emergency food stocks are almost gone, the latest trouble caused by the drought in the Horn of Africa.
TOTALLY UNRELATED TO ANYTHING – Apparently Hollywood has discovered its next Greg Mortenson: Sam Childers, the “Machine Gun Preacher,” is the subject of much hubbub and an upcoming movie starring Gerard Butler. This man claims to have been a gangbanger and drug dealer who found Jesus and then took up arms to rescue child soldiers from the LRA. Global health blogger Brett Keller offers some commentary into Childers’ outlandish (and, frankly, dubious) story, while anonymous aid blogger “J” at Tales from the Hood has a few choice words.
The Supercourse team at the University of Pittsburgh has taken the initiative to spread the WHO’s definition of health, “a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.” They have translated the definition into over 60 different languages using Google translate and have asked health professionals to review them to make sure they are correct. This global health knowledge campaign is being developed by the Supercourse team, WHO Collaborating Centre, University of Pittsburgh. Please contact Dr. Ronald LaPorte, Director, Professor of Epidemiology, University of Pittsburgh, for more information.
July 28 was the first-ever World Hepatitis Day.
POLITICS AND POLICY
- As the UN gears up for its Summit on Non-Communicable Diseases this September, blogger Michael Hodin argues that by focusing on this issue, the world body has a “new shot at relevance” in an era where its importance is decreasing (and countries contemplate cutting its funding).
- Former U.S. Ambassador on HIV/AIDS Jack Chow says the CIA’s fake vaccination scheme in Pakistan, aimed at locating Osama Bin Laden, threatens to undermine a broad set of American global health initiatives.
- The U.S. government and the Gates Foundation were responsible for 85% of the steep increase in malaria funding between 2007 and 2009. Richard Tren argues that we need to diversify funding sources and focus on control efforts.
- The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has teamed up with FC Barcelona to promote the polio eradication campaign.
- To raise awareness about violence against women in Europe, the UN has opened up a contest to design a newspaper advertisement in support of the UN Secretary-General’s UNiTE to End Violence against Women campaign. View submissions and the winning entries here.
- Seattle-based development blogger Tom Paulson continues to raise some interesting issues regarding the Gates Foundation’s funding of media coverage for global health issues. Their latest venture is a weekly program on the BBC.
- Researchers have cracked the DNA code of the strain of E. coli that originated in German sprouts and killed over 50 people this summer.
- A cell phone that doubles as a blood-oxygen tester is one of the 77 mHealth innovation finalists for the Saving Lives at Birth: A Grand Challenge for Development competition.
- A study conducted by the WHO found that France, the U.S., the Netherlands, and India have the highest rates of depression in the world, while China has the lowest. Detailed interviews were conducted with over 89,000 individuals in 18 countries.
- It is becoming more apparent that one of the most effective ways to deal with HIV/AIDS is to address neglected tropical diseases, argues the Public Library of Science in Eureka Alert.
- A study of the lifespan of HIV patients receiving combination ARV therapy by researchers at University of Ottawa has found that patients can expect to live a near normal lifespan.
- Researchers at Oklahoma University believe that a protein-based vaccine could prevent many cases of childhood pneumonia.
- Dutch researchers have found that children who were not breastfed were more likely to develop respiratory problems such as asthma.
- The first stage of trials for a new malaria vaccine by Swiss researchers in Tanzania have shown promising results.
- Has announced in a study in Pediatrics that the varicella vaccine for chickenpox has reduced the annual death toll in the United States from 105 to 14. Tests are in progress that could lead to major family planning advances. The New York Times reports on some innovations in male contraceptives that could offer safe and effective contraception.
DISEASES AND DISASTERS
- The Agbogbloshie slum outside of Accra, Ghana, is a major electronics waste dump. This site is an example of what happens to “donated” discarded electronics: residents burn them to extract precious metals and simultaneously exposed to a host of hazardous chemicals, as the goods release lead, mercury,
thallium, hydrogen cyanide, and PVC.
- A recent article by a global panel uses startling images to call attention to the woeful state of neglect and inadequate treatment of mental illness in developing nations.