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Pakistan's Escalating Vaccine Tensions

cfr.org - Laurie Garrett - July 18th, 2012

Last year the CIA deployed a Pakistani physician to execute a phony hepatitis vaccine campaign in Abbottabad, hoping to extract blood samples from the children living inside a compound, thought to house Osama bin Laden and his family. Because of the vaccine deception, multiple imams and Taliban leaders have declared that vaccines are CIA plots. The ruse may also be responsible for what appears to have been an assassination attempt against a World Health Organization immunization convoy that injured two people on July 17.

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How Doctors Without Borders is mapping the world’s epidemics

Cholera cases in MSF facilitiesImage: Cholera cases in MSF facilities

dailydot.com - David Holmes - March 9th, 2012

Five years ago, Ivan Gayton would spend months at a time in the African bush with no connection to the outside world except for a satellite phone or a high-frequency radio.

But today, the head of Doctors Without Borders in Nigeria spends 75 percent of his time on a computer or a cell phone, even when working in rural Africa. And while the sense of adventure may be diminished, Gayton says the new technologies have had an “astonishing” effect on his organization’s effectiveness.

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World Health Organization (WHO) - World Health Statistics 2012

 

World Health Organization (WHO) - who.int

World Health Statistics 2012 contains WHO’s annual compilation of health-related data for its 194 Member States, and includes a summary of the progress made towards achieving the health-related Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and associated targets.

This year, it also includes highlight summaries on the topics of noncommunicable diseases, universal health coverage and civil registration coverage.

CLICK HERE - World Health Statistics 2012

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Climate Change, Disaster Risk, and the Urban Poor - Cities Building Resilience for a Changing World

scribd.com/WorldBankPublications - April 2012

Poor people living in slums are at particularly high risk from the impacts of climate change and natural hazards. They live on the most vulnerable lands within cities, typically areas that are deemed undesirable by others and are thus affordable. Residents are exposed to the impacts of landslides, sea-level rise, flooding, and other hazards.

Exposure to risk is exacerbated by overcrowded living conditions, lack of adequate infrastructure and services, unsafe housing, inadequate nutrition, and poor health. These conditions can turn a natural hazard or change in climate into a disaster, and result in the loss of basic services, damage or destruction to homes, loss of livelihoods, malnutrition, disease, disability, and loss of life.

This study analyzes the key challenges facing the urban poor given the risks associated with climate change and disasters, particularly with regard to the delivery of basic services, and identifies strategies and financing opportunities for addressing these risks.

Several key findings emerge from the study and provide guidance for addressing risk:

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WHO 'Concerned' Over Deadly Vietnam Mystery Disease

The rash as seen on the hands and feet caused by the mystery "infection" - Photo credit: Saigon Giai Phong

google.com / News - AFP - April 23, 2012

HANOI, Vietnam — The World Health Organisation said Monday it was "concerned" about an outbreak of a mysterious skin disease in central Vietnam which has killed 19 people, mostly children.

More than 170 people have fallen ill with the unidentified illness, which causes stiffness in the limbs and ulcers on victims' hands and feet that look like severe burns.

"We are concerned about this. WHO is very aware of this case," said Wu Guogao, the organisation's chief officer in Hanoi, adding Vietnam had not asked for help with an investigation into the outbreak.

The WHO has not been given access to any official reports on the issue.

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Scottish Anthrax Outbreak 'Worst in UK in 50 Years'

The anthrax outbreak claimed 14 lives in Scotland

BBC News - January 5, 2012

An outbreak of anthrax among drug users in Scotland between 2009 and 2010 was the largest in the UK for 50 years, according to an official report.

Health Protection Scotland (HPS) said there were 119 cases of anthrax and a total of 14 deaths during the outbreak.

Its report also recorded it as "the first documented outbreak associated with heroin use anywhere in the world".

HPS warned that as long as there was an illegal drug trade there was a risk of a similar outbreak.

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BANGLADESH: Trying to Stay Polio-Free

submitted by Stuart Leiderman

      

A six month old child receives his Oral Polio Vaccine (OPV) on the 17th NID against polio  Photo: Contributor/IRIN

BANGKOK, 11 January 2012 (IRIN) - Mobile health teams in Bangladesh are conducting “child-to-child” searches to reach the remaining half million children not vaccinated during a nationwide polio immunization campaign launched on 7 January.

The campaign’s goal was to vaccinate 22 million children under five. Only 560,791 children short of reaching it, mobile teams have been conducting house visits, concluding on 11 January, to vaccinate the remainder, Arun Bhadra Thapa, World Health Organization’s country representative, told IRIN.

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A six month old child receives his Oral Polio Vaccine (OPV) on the 17th NID against polio
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Mystery Kidney Disease in Central America

by Kate Sheehy - PRI's The World - BBC News - December 12, 2011

      

A mysterious epidemic is sweeping Central America - it's the second biggest cause of death among men in El Salvador, and in Nicaragua it's a bigger killer of men than HIV and diabetes combined. It's unexplained but the latest theory is that the victims are literally working themselves to death.

In the western lowlands of Nicaragua, in a region of vast sugar cane fields, sits the tiny community of La Isla.

The small houses are a patchwork of concrete and wood. Pieces of cloth serve as doors.

Maudiel Martinez emerges from his house to greet me. He's pale, and his cheekbones protrude from his face. He hunches over like an old man - but he is only 19 years old.

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C-SPAN Video Link - Global Efforts To End Malaria

submitted by Albert Gomez

Witnesses testified on the future of drug and vaccine development as well as the challenges in ensuring the availability, affordability and safe distribution of anti-malarial medicines.

C-SPAN Video Link - Global Efforts To End Malaria (2 hours, 21 minutes)

http://www.c-spanvideo.org/program/MalariaP

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U.S. Needs a National Disease Surveillance System

The Institute of Medicine urges HHS to create system that taps into electronic health records and patient-compiled data to help prevent and treat chronic heart and lung conditions.
By Neil Versel  InformationWeek

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