23/05/2013- Over 500 members of the Network of People Living with HIV/AIDS (NEPWHAN) yesterday stormed the National Assembly to protest the non passage of the HIV/AIDS anti discrimination bill into law.
President of NEPWHAN Edward Ogenyi who was received at the gate by Senator Wilson Ake on behalf of the Senate president said stigmatization has made living with HIV/AIDS in Nigeria quite challenging and hindered people from accessing services to save their lives.
The bill, presently pending before the Senate, has been at the National Assembly for the past eight years. Ogenyi said Nigeria is presently the only country without the anti AIDS-related stigma and discrimination law. Read More>>>
23/05/2013- A project being implemented under a Global Fund grant will improve Zimbabwe’s health information systems by providing Internet connection infrastructure for 82 urban and rural sites. The Zimbabwe project is just one of many similar projects around the world where modern communications technology is being used to enhance data collection.
The project is part of a Round 8 health systems strengthening grant to Zimbabwe for which the principal recipient (PR) is the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). The project is designed to improve the availability of timely quality health data, which is critical for planning, implementation and monitoring of health programmes in Zimbabwe.
The project is a response to weaknesses in Zimbabwe’s data collection systems. An example of these weaknesses is the fact that medical reports have not been transmitted on time from the district and provincial levels to the national level because of a poor fixed telephone line network and the unavailability of an Internet connection. A 2010 study reportedly revealed that only one-third of the districts in Zimbabwe have access to email. Read More>>>
22/05/2013- Moments of historic greatness are rarely realized by a single actor. Instead, they require the work of partners, with a sense of shared responsibility and coordinated action. The Big Push to defeat malaria is no different. In the past 10 years, partners working together have reversed malaria’s spread and prevented millions of deaths, mostly of children under the age of five. Yet even with all that progress, malaria still claims a child’s life every minute. So we have more work to do. Science has given us the tools to defeat this disease. We will achieve greatness by getting it done.
Today we have insecticide-treated nets rather than just regular nets that last longer, significantly reducing costs. There are new drugs to tackle resistant strands and rapid diagnostic tests that allow us to identify kids that do and don’t have malaria. We are moving in the right direction. Global malaria mortality rates have dropped by 26 percent and half of the malaria endemic countries are on track to meeting the global target of reducing malaria case incidence by 75 percent by 2015.
As a global community, our fates are often more intertwined than we like to imagine. Controlling malaria isn’t only a prospect of preventing needless deaths, it is an economic imperative. Entrepreneurs, farmers and traders who are at home sick themselves or with their kids cost Africa an estimated $12 billion a year in productivity. Defeating malaria is one of the first steps we can take to speed up Africa-driven economic growth. Read More>>>
21/03/2013- Gaps in the healthcare system in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) are hampering the fight against malaria, a leading killer of children, say experts.
Malaria accounts for about a third of outpatient consultations in DRC clinics, Leonard Kouadio, a UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) health specialist, told IRIN. He added, “It is the leading cause of death among children under five years and is responsible for a significant proportion of deaths among older children and adults.”
Kouadio continued: “Recent retrospective mortality surveys have revealed that in all regions of the country, the fever is associated with 40 percent of [deaths of] children under five.”
Malaria is also a leading cause of school absenteeism in DRC, and it may have other adverse effects. “In cases of severe malaria, children who survive face serious health problems such as epilepsy, impaired vision or speech,” he said.
21/05/2013- The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria agreed to participate in a new partnership to leverage private sector funding to speed delivery and expand access to health supplies such as contraceptives, bed nets, and medicines.
The Pledge Guarantee for Health, is a new financing mechanism that will help increase the impact of each dollar of donor funding and ultimately improve healthcare access and outcomes for millions of people. The initiative was announced at the GBC Health Conference in New York, where leading global health and development experts from the public and private sectors convened.
“The Global Fund has undergone a number of enhancements in our process and we are joining efforts with partners like Pledge Guarantee for Health to not only accelerate delivery of essential health commodities but also to increase value for money,” said Mark Dybul, Executive Director of the Global Fund.
Developed and incubated by the United Nations Foundation, the Pledge Guarantee for Health facilitates innovative financing that expedites the disbursement of donor funds, making global health supplies more accessible and more affordable for developing countries. Read More>>>
Director-General of the World Health Organization Dr. Margaret Chan’s opening address for the 66th World Health Assembly
21/05/2013- Mister President, Excellencies, honourable ministers, distinguished delegates, friends and colleagues, ladies and gentlemen.
Ten years ago, the World Health Assembly met under a cloud of anxiety. SARS, the first severe new disease of the 21st century, was spreading explosively along the routes of international air travel, placing any city with an international airport at risk of imported cases.
By early July of that year, less than four months after the first global alerts were issued, WHO could declare the outbreak over. Rarely has the world collaborated, on so many levels, with such a strong sense of shared purpose.
Experiences during the SARS outbreak sparked extensive revisions of the International Health Regulations. These revisions gave the world a greatly strengthened legal instrument for detecting and responding to public health emergencies, including those caused by a new disease.
We are dealing with two new diseases right now.
Human infections with a novel coronavirus, from the same family as SARS, were first detected last year in the Eastern Mediterranean Region. To date, 41 cases, including 20 deaths, have been reported.
Though the number of cases remains small, limited human-to-human transmission has occurred and health care workers have been infected. Read More>>>
20/05/2013- Since today is International Day against Homophobia and Transphobia, it is worth recognizing the importance of efforts to stop inequality and stigma faced by lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people all over the world. Among many other challenges, they face disproportionate rates of HIV infection.
The date of 17 May commemorates the World Health Organization’s decision in 1990 to declassify homosexuality as a mental disorder. It is a day to celebrate the role of LGBT communities and to raise awareness about widespread inequalities they face.
In November 2012, the Global Forum on MSM & HIV released a report that showed that homophobia and stigma from health care providers plays a significant role in reducing access to HIV resources for men who have sex with men. The global survey also indicated that only one third of men who have sex with men can easily access condoms, lubricant, HIV testing, and HIV treatment.
Homophobia and discrimination by health providers can make it difficult for MSM and transgender people to use traditional and mainstream health services. Young men who participated in the study said that they relied on trusted community-based organizations, which offer safe spaces to meet other MSM, safe spaces to receive services and access to comprehensive health care.
The Global Fund is committed to implementing policies and strategies to address these challenges. It is important to address structural barriers such as stigma, discrimination, and criminalization. It is also critically important that we support community-based organizations as a vital component of the HIV response that can provide services without facing harassment and intolerance. Read More>>>
20/05/2013- The hope of a vaccine for HIV/AIDS cannot be underestimated. At the moment, we can control the disease if we can find HIV+ people early enough before they get sick and get them on treatment – but they will live with this disease for the rest of their lives and will still face significant struggles.
Colleagues in the advocacy movement approached me about sharing some thoughts around World AIDS Vaccine Day which is coming up this week. Even though there have been setbacks along the road to an AIDS vaccine, that road has massively changed what we know about the disease and how to treat it – we have to continue to travel that road to find the answers.
Rosemary Mburu of World AIDS Campaign International and Sydney Hushie of the Global Youth Coalition on HIV and AIDS are featured here today about the importance of not losing hope, redoubling our efforts and why a vaccine for AIDS remains both a possibility and a need in our collective battle against this disease. Read More>>>
20/05/2013- A Chitungwiza man believed to have been HIV-positive, allegedly burnt himself to death in protest over being denied conjugal rights by his estranged wife.
Harare provincial police spokesperson Inspector Tadius Chibanda confirmed the incident and said the deceased had been identified as Arum Jeke (34) of Unit M. “On May 11 at around 0900hours, the man was left alone eating porridge in the bedroom by his wife, who went to attend to their two children outside,” he said. Insp Chibanda said the wife later saw smoke coming out of the house and rushed back to investigate. She discovered that the bedroom was on fire and yelled for help from neighbours.
The wife and her neighbours managed to extinguish the fire but discovered that Jeke had died in the inferno. It was alleged that Jeke committed suicide by covering himself with blankets over a burning paraffin stove. A report was made to the police and the man’s body was taken to Chitungwiza Central Hospital mortuary. Read More>>>
20/05/2013- As part of efforts to curb the devastating effect of malaria on pregnant women and children, Mortein in partnership with the Lagos State Ministry of Health and National Association of Nigerian Nurses and Midwives (NANNM) intensified its anti-malaria campaign to raise awareness on causes of malaria and how this heath challenge could be tackled. The campaign, part of activities to mark this year’s anti malaria day held in other states of the federation and across other African markets.
With an estimated death of 3000 children daily, and attendant devastating consequences on pregnant women and children, including learning impairments and brain damage, the fight against malaria has become more urgent.
Despite several anti-malaria initiatives in Nigeria, Malaria remains the number one cause of death in the country, ahead of the Human Immunodeficiency Virus/Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (HIV/AIDS) and stroke. Children under five and pregnant women account for about 85 per cent of these deaths. The picture for these children and expectant mothers look bleak, but with the continued effort by government at all levels, non- government and corporate organisations, the effect is being controlled. Read More>>>