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December 20, 2004

WHO Warns of Pandemic
Health officials warned Monday that the world was close to its next pandemic -- a powerful and highly contagious mix of avian influenza and flu virus that would likely be centered in Asia. Authorities also warned that humans, and not animals as initially thought, would probably be the carriers.
>> Read article at WashingtonPost.com

December 14, 2004

UN sponsors health magazine as peace bridge between Israelis and Palestinians
Under its banner of Health as a bridge for peace, a United Nations agency is sponsoring a new joint bimonthly magazine by Israeli and Palestinian professionals to improve public health in the West Bank and Gaza Strip despite the conflict dividing the two peoples.
>> Read article at UNNewsCentre.com

December 10, 2004

Deprivation affects more than half of the world's children
More than half of the children in the world live in extreme deprivation due to poverty, war, and HIV/AIDS, warns a report published this week by UNICEF, which argues that these problems are impeding the development of the countries affected. The report also provides a complete almanac of up to date statistical data on children.
>> Read article at BritishMedicalJournal.com
>> The UNICEF report can be found here

December 8, 2004

African health care systems: what went wrong?
The last century witnessed unparalleled improvements in the health indicators of many countries in the African Region, particularly reductions in child mortality. Available evidence indicates that the lowest child mortality rates occurred in the 1970s. However, since the mid 1980s, the rate of decline slowed significantly, with some countries even experiencing reversals in child mortality rates.
>> Read article at NewsMedical.net
>> The WHO Regional Office for Africa website can be found here

'No drop' in world hunger deaths
A child still dies of hunger every five seconds, eight years on from a pledge to halve the world's hungry by 2015, a United Nations agency has said. The annual UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) report says present levels of hunger cause the death of more than five million children a year.
>> Read article at BBCNews.co.uk
>> The FAO report can be found here

December 2, 2004

More of the same - UN reform panel report
Secretary-General Kofi Annan today gave his strong support to the findings of a high-level panel that looked at how the international community could address new and evolving security threats, including its recommendations for reforming the United Nations.
>> Read article at UN.org

November 29, 2004

Birdflu Far More Deadly Than SARS, WHO Says
The bird flu virus is far more lethal than the SARS virus that struck Asia last year and could unleash a pandemic that could kill as many as 50 million people, a World Health Organization official said Monday. A WHO estimate last week that H5N1 could infect up to 30 percent of the world's population and kill between two and seven million people was a conservative estimate, said Shigeru Omi, regional director of WHO's Western Pacific Regional Office.
>> Read article at Reuters.com

November 25, 2004

Drug industry is not tackling threats to public health says WHO
Profit driven drug companies are not developing enough drugs and vaccines to address two major threats to public health—influenza and resistance to antibacterial drugs—that could kill millions of people across the globe, the World Health Organization says in a new report. In the report the Geneva based agency calls for urgent action to address these two and 15 other diseases and conditions for which it says treatments do not exist, are inadequate, or are not reaching patients.
>> Read article at BMJ.com

November 23, 2004

Aids casts shadow over Africa
Aids has hit sub-Saharan Africa so badly that the disease will cast a shadow over generations to come, even in countries that succeed in the battle against it, the United Nations warned on Tuesday. Africans account for about 25,4-million of the 39,4-million people around the world who have either the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) or Aids, the UN's World Health Organisation (WHO) and UNAids said in an annual report.
>> Read article at MG.co.za

November 20, 2004

Global Fund Begins New Funding Round in March; US Cuts Contribution
The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria on Thursday announced that it will begin accepting applications for a fifth round of project grants in March 2005 and will approve grants in September 2005. Although the fund initially wanted to launch its grant cycle for 2005 this month, the 19-member board unanimously voted to delay accepting proposals for five months after officials from the Bush administration proposed a six- to 12-month delay because of funding shortfalls.
>> Read article at MedicalNewsToday.com

November 18, 2004

Landmark report could influence the future of medicines in Europe and the world
The World Health Organization (WHO) today releases a groundbreaking report which recommends ways in which pharmaceutical research and innovation can best address health needs and emerging threats in Europe and the world.
>> Read article at WHO.int
>> The full WHO report can be found here (PDF)

November 11, 2004

WHO Urges Science to Keep World Healthy
Technological advances that help drug companies churn out highly profitable prescription medications must also be applied to improving public health care around the globe, a World Health Organization report released Wednesday says.
The 143-page analysis found that beyond academic and commercial applications, scientific breakthroughs should play a greater role in narrowing the ever-widening gap between the quality of care available in the developed world and poor corners of the globe, especially much of Africa and Latin America.
>> Read article at ABCNews.com
>> The WHO report can be found here (PDF)

November 5, 2004

Preventing and treating HIV/AIDS in poor countries
Today, the World Health Organization (WHO) announces measures which will ensure that HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment efforts in poor countries will also help deliver better health services. Canada's 100 million Canadian dollars contribution to the WHO this year is key in helping to build these services, which include urgently addressing the shortage of health workers in countries suffering the most pressure from the effects of HIV/AIDS.
>> Read article at MedicalNewsToday.com

November 1, 2004

Global obesity, 300 million adults are overweight
Around the world 300 million adults are now overweight, and the numbers are growing at an alarming rate, say experts at the International Obesity Conference, Sun City, South Africa.
>> Read article at MedicalNewsToday.com

October 26, 2004

UN calls for more effort on AIDS
Britain must take a lead in trying to ensure greater access to HIV drugs in the developing world, the UN says. Stephen Lewis, special envoy to the UN Secretary General, launches his Stop Aids campaign in London on Tuesday. He is calling for Tony Blair to use Britain's upcoming presidency of the G8 group of rich nations to lobby for more funds for treatment in Africa.
>> Read article at BBCNews.co.uk

October 12, 2004

AIDS crisis could fuel Africa famine
Famine in Africa could worsen unless action is taken to tackle the continent's HIV/AIDS epidemic, a senior U.N. official said on Tuesday. "Unless urgent interventions are made, the epidemic could cause a steady fall in agricultural production which would fuel serious famine in African countries," said Peter Piot, executive director of the joint United Nations programme to fight HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), speaking in Ethiopia. AIDS killed up to 2.2 million Africans in 2003 and an estimated 3 million contracted HIV, bringing the number of people with HIV/AIDS in Africa to 25 million.
>> Read article at ReutersHealth.com

October 8, 2004

UN launches key anti-polio push
The biggest ever public health drive is under way to immunise 300 million children in Africa and Asia against the potentially crippling disease of polio. Tens of thousands of mobile teams run by the World Health Organisation are working at locations including Egypt, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India. The aim is to reach 80 million children under five in sub-Saharan Africa alone.
>> Read article at News.BBC.co.uk

October 7, 2004

Child Mortality Rising Fast in Parts of Asia - U.N.
Child mortality rates are spiralling in parts of Asia because of financially crippled public health care systems, a U.N. report said on Friday. An increasing reliance on privatized health care and the stripping back of state hospitals was endangering the health of thousands of mothers and children, a senior United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) official said.
>> Read article at Reuters.com

September 23, 2004

Africa needs dramatic aid boost, UN officials and African leaders say
Africa needs at least $50 billion more in official development assistance annually to meet the Millennium Development Goals by 2015, said UN officials and African leaders at a forum discussing Africa's development challenges at UN Headquarters today. President Obasanjo of Nigeria, President Mutharika of Malawi and UK Foreign Secretary Jack Straw all called for the international community to take immediate action to tackle Africa's vicious circle of poverty, disease and hunger.
>> Read article at UNDP.org

September 16, 2004

Iraq War Illegal, Says U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan
The United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan has told the BBC the US-led invasion of Iraq was an illegal act that contravened the UN charter. He said the decision to take action in Iraq should have been made by the Security Council, not unilaterally.
>> Read article at BBCNews.com

September 3, 2004

Vitamins & minerals for children fortifies economic development in China
China’s massive drive to reduce the damage done by vitamin and mineral deficiency, particularly to children, is paying rich dividends for its economy, UNICEF and the Chinese Ministry of Health announced today. But more needs to be done to help the 250 million people still suffering from the devastating effects of iron deficiency anaemia, vitamin A deficiency and other forms of hidden hunger, they added.
>> Read article at UNICEF.org

August 19 , 2004

300,000 Kids to Die of Vitamin A Deficiency - Unicef Experts
UNICEF has declared that if major food products are not fortified with Vitamin 'A', over 300,000 children will die in the next 10 years.
>> Read article at AllAfrica.com

July 16, 2004

Science Takes Back Seat at AIDS Conference
Science has taken a backseat to politics at the 15th International AIDS Conference, which closed Friday with no major research breakthroughs reported and a vaccine, the holy grail in the war on the incurable virus, still years away.
>> Read article at Reuters.com

July 13, 2004

AIDS Robs 15 Million Children of Parents: UN Report
The AIDS epidemic has robbed 15 million children of one or both parents and reversed a trend toward fewer orphans, according to a U.N. report released at the 15th International AIDS Conference on Tuesday. "It is a tidal wave of children who have lost one or more of their parents," Carol Bellamy, executive director of UNICEF, the United Nations children's agency, told Reuters.
>> Read article at Medline Plus

June 16, 2004

Two Drugs Off WHO's List of HIV Medicines
The U.N. health agency has removed two versions of antiretroviral drugs - commonly used in developing countries - from its list of approved HIV medicines, saying it's uncertain they are biologically the same as the patented drugs.
>> Read article at KFWB.com

May 15, 2004

WHO admits its target on AIDS drugs may be unrealistic
More donor funds than ever before—at least $20.5bn (£11.5bn; €17.3bn)—are available for AIDS relief in the world's poorest countries, but a huge concerted effort will be needed to get antiretroviral drugs to millions of people who need them before it is too late, the World Health Organization said on Tuesday in its annual report.
>> Read article at BMJ.com

May 14, 2004

World Health Assembly set to tackle HIV/AIDS, SARS,
the global strategy on diet, physical activity and health

The World Health Assembly, bringing the 192 Member States of the World Health Organization together, is set to consider several critical health issues next week. The Assembly is the supreme decision-making body for WHO, and runs this year from 17 - 22 May. It will discuss actions needed to fight HIV/AIDS, to increase safety on the world's roads, a proposed strategy on diet, physical activity and health, a proposed strategy for reproductive health, a resolution on family health, and will receive updates on progress in eradicating polio, controlling measles and SARS.
>> Read article at News-Medical.net

May 7, 2004

New TV ads to help fight for better health
The World Health Organisation has endorsed the Scottish Executive's policies of fighting poor health by combining physical activity and healthy eating. A WHO spokesman said: "We strongly commend Scotland's commitment in this area."
>> Read article at EveningTimes.co.uk

March 24, 2004

Lack of Vitamins And Minerals Impairs a Third of World Population
As many as a third of the world's people do not meet their physical and intellectual potential because of vitamin and mineral deficiencies, according to a report released in New York today by UNICEF and The Micronutrient Initiative
>> Read article at UNICEFUSA.org

February 22, 2004

U.N. Experts Urge EU to Tackle AIDS Crisis
U.N. experts Sunday urged the European Union to appoint a commissioner to take charge of the fight against AIDS to stem a growing crisis in eastern Europe as the bloc prepares to enlarge in May. Speaking on the eve of a two-day conference in Dublin, Peter Piot , Executive Director of UNAIDS, the U.N.'s AIDS group, said HIV/AIDS was spreading faster in eastern Europe and central Asia than anywhere else in the world, with a 50-fold increase in new cases during the past 10 years.
>> Read article at Reuters.com

January 20, 2004

Supplements needed in southern hemisphere
A lack of basic vitamins and minerals is damaging the health of one-third of the world's people and holding back the economic development of virtually every country in the southern hemisphere, claims a new report presented to country and business leaders yesterday. Deficiency in vitamins and minerals is responsible for impairing intellectual development, compromising immune systems, provoking birth defects, and consigning some 2 billion people to lives below their physical and mental potential, say scientists
>> Read article at Nutraingredients.com

US lobby wins time for changes to global health strategy
The United States has managed to stall approval of the WHO's diet and health strategy, designed to help the world's governments stem the rise in obesity. The World Health Organisation (WHO) executive board, meeting in Geneva this week, debated the plan yesterday with the aim of preparing it for this spring's World Health Assembly. But US representatives claimed that the science behind the report recommendations was flawed and called for further research into the role of diet on health
>> Read article at Nutraingredients.com

World Health Report 2003: Shaping The Future
According to the BMJ, the overall message of the WHO's 2003 report Shaping The Future is: Strengthen health systems, otherwise there will be no progress in meeting a vast and growing array of health inequalities. Furthermore, the report says firmly that strengthened health systems must be based on primary health care. "Shaping the future" is actually about going back to basics
>> Read article at WHO.int

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