Global Health Weekly News Round-Up

Politics and Policies

  • The United States and representatives from 16 African nations gathered on August 27-31 at the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Center in Accra, Ghana for the pandemic planning conference.
  • Ban on smoking in Public areas went into effect in Lebanon on 3rd September.
  • The German firm that produced thalidomide (taken by pregnant women to reduce morning sickness in 1950’s and early 1960’s) issued an apology to the thousands born disabled as a result of the drug use.
  • U.S. court halts some cuts for Medicaid home care.
  • Justice officials in Berlin (Germany) have laid out guidelines on Wednesday on circumcision.
  • Japan is moving towards relaxing restrictions on American beef imports which was limited because of fears about mad cow disease.

Programs

  • The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) project has supported a $60-million initiative to improve health and nutrition status of people in Ghana especially women of child-bearing age and children less than five years.
  • The Health for All Coalition (HFAC) has launched its ‘Kick Cholera Komot Na Salone’ campaign at Tombo Park, Waterloo to eradicate cholera in Sierra Leone.
  • To improve reproductive health rights of females in Ghana, a project funded by SIMAVI, has been launched by Integrated Social Development Centre (ISODEC) with four local non-governmental organizations (NGO’s)

Research

  • Study published in Journal of Pediatrics states that the expectant mothers who learn from prenatal diagnosis that they are carrying a fetus with a congenital heart defect commonly suffer post-traumatic stress, depression and anxiety.
  • A study funded by the National Institutes of Health states that blood sugar control does not help infants and children undergoing heart surgery.
  • The researchers at North Carolina State University have shown that exposure to bisphenol A (BPA) early in life results in High levels of anxiety. This is due to significant gene expression changes in a specific region of brain called the amygdala.
  • A study found that fathers who sleep in close proximity to their children have their testosterone low as compared to those who sleep alone.
  • A study found that heath care spending in last five years of life exceeds total assets for one quarter of U.S. Medicare population.
  • In a study done at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia it was found that coping skills and marital satisfaction help pregnant moms to manage stress when fetus has heart defect.
  • In a study done by the Centers of Disease Control and prevention (the CDC) it found that NFL players are at higher risk of degenerative brain disorders.
  • According to a study adding a few minutes’ attempts to resuscitate patients who suffer a heart attack in hospitalization can significantly boost their chances of survival.
  • According to a study water pipe smoking is as harmful as smoking cigarettes.
  • A study states that more than half the tumors from the cancer have mutations that might be treated by new drugs that are already in pipeline or that could be easily developed.
  • A recent study stated that more young adults have insurance after health care law.
  • A recent study showed that green tea boosts brain power. It also pointed out that it can help to fight cancer, gum disease and glaucoma.
  • According to a recent study on Swedish about women half of the women may have sleep apnea.
  • In a recent study it was found that behavioral sleep training of infants might not have long term benefits.
  • A group researchers say that people can be obese but yet physically healthy and fit. They might not be at a greater risk of any heart disease or cancer than any normal weight people.
  • A study says that sunshine Vitamin D speeds tuberculosis recovery. It states that this vitamin dampen the body’s inflammatory response, reducing damage to the lungs.
  • According to a study intense workouts might be safe for the cardiac disease patients.
  • A long term study showed that the teenagers who smoked cannabis before they reached 18 may have long lasting damage to their intelligence, memory and attention.
  • Group of researchers in their study found that regular exercise might temporarily ease cigarette carvings.
  • According to a new report Australians who smoke cigarettes are declining while the waistlines of people are growing.
  • According to a study, females who are born in South Asian nations and give birth to children in Australia have almost double the rates of still birth as compared to those who were born locally.
  • Australian researchers have found a link between marijuana smoking and testicular cancer.

Diseases and Disasters

  • Earthquake of 5.7 magnitude struck southwestern China on September 7, Friday killing at least 80 people.
  • An earthquake with 7.6 magnitude hit Costa Rica on September 5. Very little damage with only one person is reported of being dead.
  • Costa Rica was hit by an earthquake of 3.4 magnitude on September 7.
  • Tornados hit Washington DC, New York City, Queens and Brooklyn (U.S.A.). No serious injuries reported.
  • In Nigeria flood kills 137 people and displaced more than 30,000 people since the beginning of July 2012.
  • Ebola outbreak killed 15 people in Congo.
  • Three visitors to Yosemite National Park California died due to infection with potentially dangerous Hantavirus.

 

Global Health Weekly News Round-up

Politics and Policies:

  • United Nations has urged Philippines to pass reproductive health bill. It will help to achieve its health-related targets in the Millennium Development Goals (MDG’s).
  • States (U.S.) sets standards for insurance exchanges.
  • The Costs for senior’s Medicare Part D premiums will remain stable.
  • Massachusetts Governor signs health care cost containment bill.
  • Medicaid official outlines state flexibility in health law’s Medicaid expansion.
  • Dementia has been added to the list of national health priority areas in Australia, following a meeting of federal and state health ministers in Sydney.
  • Uganda’s government sued over maternal healthcare.
  • Spain will modify the controversial plan to deny public healthcare to undocumented immigrants.  They would now be treated under same system used for temporary foreign visitors to Spain.

Programs:

  • A grant of 690,000 from the African Water Facility (AWF) will support Kenya Rainwater Association (KRA) to build resilience to droughts through rain water harvesting management (IRHM).
  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention officials say that the HIV pill is also for people at risk of getting this deadly infection- woman, heterosexual men.
  • The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved Lucentis for treatment of diabetic macular edema- a life threatening eye disease that occurs in people with diabetes.
  • Kenyatta National Hospital (KNH) working with the University of Colorado has embraced PartoPen and Partgraph technology to reduce maternal mortality and life threatening complications.

Research:

  • The researchers say that changing diets, urbanization and increasing sedentary lives has resulted in steep rise in obesity among many the African nations (Sub-Saharan Africa). They called it ‘thrifty gene hypotheses’.
  • According to a new study the way red meat is cooked can affect cancer risk.  It was found that men who ate more than 2.5 servings of red meat cooked by any high temperature method (broiling or grilling etc.) were 40% more likely to have advanced prostate cancer than men who rarely did so.
  • According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) there is a slight drop in high school students who smoke cigarettes but sharp increase in percentage of black students who smoked cigars.
  • A recent study indicates that babies born to mothers who are overweight or obese in sub-Saharan Africa who are obese more likely die in the first two days after their birth.
  • Researchers at Duke University Health System have found a promising stem cell therapy for preventing osteoarthritis after a joint injury, using a type of stem cell, called mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs).
  • According to a study conducted by University of Minnesota researchers investigating in quality of care for diabetic patients reduces their costs.
  • A recent research found that the breast cancer survivors with higher body fat had higher mean concentration of Serum amyloid A protein and C-reactive protein than women with lower body fat. Both of them are related to worse survival rates.
  • According to a research article planning and management instruments in healthcare area are limited in Brazil.
  • A study reconfirmed the usefulness of bendiocarb on anopheles populations (this mosquito causes malaria) resistant to pyrethroids.
  • A research study shows that percentage of exercise repetitions (by Parkinson’s disease patients) completed of those agreed with a physiotherapist in a six week personalized exercise program reduced with patient’s age but better compliance with medication was seen with age.
  • A study found that Asian females have very low prevalence of postpartum hemorrhage and compared to those of Europe.
  • Study found that the ionizing radiations might triggers mechanisms that might favor the development of Alzheimer’s disease.
  • According to Australian researchers persistent heavy marijuana use damages the brains memory and learning capacity.
  • In a study involving twins it was found that fainting could be triggered by a combination of genetic and environmental factors.
  • In a study done in Australia it was found that overqualified immigrants who are not able to find a job of their qualification after three years are likely to suffer from depression.
  • A research showed that men who did weight lifting reduced their chances of developing type 2 diabetes.

Diseases and Disasters:

  • A West Nile virus epidemic has prompted a public health emergency in Dallas County in Texas. Nine people are reported to be killed by infection with this virus.
  • A 6.2 magnitude earthquake killed at least 87 people and injured 400 in northwestern Iran on Saturday (Aug, 11).
  • Typhoon Haikui struck China on Wednesday.  It has caused flooding and stranded hundreds of people.
  • Sliced apples packages distributed to fast-food and grocery chains being recalled due possible listeria contamination.
  • Queensland health authorities have rejected swine flu reports.
  • Queensland doctors are concerned with an outbreak of the sexually transmitted disease, syphilis, in states northwest.
  • Mexico kills 8 million birds infected with bird flu.
  • The CDC says 145 cases of the influenza A (H3N2) variant have been found in four United States states since mid-July. This new strain in humans continues to spread.
  • According to the CDC just one drug is left to fight against resistant Gonorrhea.

 

Global Health Weekly News Round-Up

Politics and Policies:

  • The House Committee on Appropriations released a draft of the FY 2013 Labor, Health & Human Services, Education and related Agencies appropriations bill. It provides the funding levels for global health programs at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the John E. Fogarty International Center.
  • Heads of State endorse the establishment of the African Public Health Emergency Fund (APHEF).
  • New smoking law in South Africa under attack.
  • Federally funded website in Australia is offering tools and tips to those battling anxiety and depression.
  • The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved Truvada as HIV prevention pill.
  • European agency backs approval of a gene therapy.
  • Atlanta curbs smoking, part of southern wave of bans.
  • The F.D.A. has approved Qsymia, a weight loss drug.

Programs:

  • AIDS research road map issued by the international AIDS specialists- hope of eventual AIDS cure revived. The priorities of new cure research strategy will be- determine why HIV hibernates and persists, why people are naturally resistant, develop strategies to make them more naturally resistant etc.
  • African women to gain access to innovative contraception.  The UK Department for International Development (DFID), the US Agency for International Development, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Pfizer and PATH (the Program for Appropriate Technology in Health) partnership plans to produce 12 million doses of contraceptive between 2013 and 2016.
  • iAFya mobile health application launched in East Africa. This personal health service on phone answers everyday health questions- from basic information to professional health advice.
  • UCB launches Neupro(R) in the U.S. to treat Parkinson’s disease and Restless Legs syndrome.
  • Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved Onyx blood cancer drug Kyprolis (Carfilzomib).

Research:

  • National Institutes of Health (NIH) funded study suggests that egg therapy helps children to overcome their allergies.
  • The researchers at Stanford University and at the Howard Hudges Medical Institute have worked on getting genome maps from 91 sperms and were able to create a personal map of the DNA within the sperm. They were also able to capture an image of the new mutations that formed within each sperm cell as the DNA changed to create more genetic diversity.
  • Scientists have discovered a link between cancerous cervical cells and those in the esophagus. They also found out that these cancerous cells are the remnants of a process known as embryogenesis, which failed to disappear and get replace by the adult cells.
  • Tool created by the researchers help to track real time changes in the brain of patients undergoing deep brain stimulation (DBS) for the treatment of brain disorders like Parkinson’s disease, depression and Tourette.
  • The researchers at the California Institute of Technology have revealed that certain changes in the over reactive immune system of mice could cause behaviors similar to those found in autism. This study has helped to find a link between irregularities in the immune system and neurodevelopmental disorders.
  • Researchers turn skin cells to brain cells.  They have generated the type of human neuron which is specifically damaged by the Parkinson’s disease (PD) and used various drugs to stop the damage.
  • Scientists have designed a pen like tool to more effectively stop seizures.
  • The researchers at the University of Dundee have showed through their study that a cheap gout drug- allopurinol- is helpful to treat heart pain.
  • A new study shows that the vitamin C may lower gout risk in men. It showed that consuming at least 1500 milligrams per day of this vitamin reduces the odds of gout by 46 percent.
  • The researchers in the Milk Quality Improvement Program at Cornell’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences have identified the predominant spore-forming bacteria in milk and their unique enzyme activity, the knowledge of which can be used to protect the quality and shelf life of dairy products.
  • Scientists grow sweat glands from newly identified stem cells. They devised a strategy to purify and molecularly characterize the different kinds of stem cell populations that make up the complex sweat duct and gland in skin.
  • A team of researchers have demonstrated the role of Lactobacillus reuteri as a beneficial probiotic organism which produces an antimicrobial substance known as reuterin, which may protect intestinal epithelial cells from infection by the foodborne bacterial pathogen Salmonella.
  • Scientist develop a new line of approach for combination therapy against melanoma. It involves combating the interaction between the protein MDM4 and the tumor suppressor p53.
  • A research shows that Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) testing in HIV positive women may help reduce frequent cervical cancer screening.
  • A study says that bacteria outbreak (which can cause gastroenteritis) in Northern Europe is due to ocean warming.
  • Discovery of anti-inflammatory effects of abscisic acid in the lungs could prove crucial to healing influenza.
  • Latest studies have revealed that patients with spinal cord injury and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis may benefit from cell transplantation.
  • According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) fatal car crash risk highest among young drivers. Its July issue of Morbidity and Mortality Weekly report found that about 22 percent of the motor vehicle deaths among the U.S. residents with young people ages 15 to 24.
  • A study shows that women with high stress jobs may be more likely to have a heart attack.

Diseases and Disasters:

  • Heavy rains kill about 37 people in Beijing (China).
  • U.S. whooping cough outbreak could be worst in half century.
  • The doctors say that the survivors of movie massacre likely to develop depression, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

 

 

Global Health Weekly News Round-Up

UNICEF celebrated its 65th anniversary on December 11, 2011 (Source: http://www.unicefusa.org/news/news-from-the-field/unicef-at-65-looking-back.html).

Politics and Policies

  • The US Department of Health and Human Services announced that, beginning in 2014, states will be allowed a basic set of essential health benefits for millions of Americans who would qualify for coverage through state based insurance exchanges (Source: http://www.politicalnewsnow.com/2011/12/17/states-to-weigh-in-on-basic-health-coverage-reuters/).
  • The US National Transportation and Safety Board (NTSB) called for the first ever nation-wide ban on drive use of portable electronic devices (PEDs) while operating a motor vehicle (Source: http://www.ntsb.gov/news/2011/111213.html).
  • The Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS) have opposed a rule that required the health care facilities workers to have an annual influenza vaccine or they lose their jobs (Source: http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/12/14/idUS205180+14-Dec-2011+GNW20111214).
  • First United Nations (UN) report on human rights, sexual orientation and gender identity, titled, “Discriminatory laws and practices and acts of violence against individuals based on their sexual orientation and gender identity, A.HRC.19.41.” was released on Wednesday, December 15th, 2011 (Source: http://www.windycitymediagroup.com/gay/lesbian/news/ARTICLE.php?AID=35274).
  • The United States Conference of Mayors issued a report indicating emergency food assistance increased over the past year by an average of 15%. This report, prepared by City Policy Associates, contains each city (29 cities) survey report with their individual profiles – median household income, the metro unemployment rate, the monthly foreclosure rate, percentage of people in city who fall below the poverty line and contact information for individual service providers (Source: http://www.usmayors.org/pressreleases/uploads/20111215-release-hhr-en.pdf).

Programs

Research

Diseases and Disasters

These headlines were compiled by Vani Nanda, MPH Candidate at West Chester University PA.