“This race will be intense”: a look at elections for Director General of the WHO

This week, the World Health Assembly is meeting in Geneva. Elections for the next Director General of the World Health Organization is a top item Read More

“Zika is a test to see if we’ve learned anything from Ebola” — Emergency funding not…

Categories: Budget, U.S. Policy and FundingTags: zikaThe 1.9 billion dollars the Obama Administration has requested to respond to the Zika virus is not enough, according to Amy Pope. It’s not enough to build lab capacity, improve surveillance and diagnostics, and strengthen overall health systems so that the global community can anticipate emerging infections instead of reacting to them, she says. That, she […](Read more…)

How did Zika rise so quickly to the top of the global health policy agenda?

The World Health Organization reported the first local transmission of Zika virus in the Western Hemisphere in May 2015. Since then, transmission was identified in 18 countries Read More


Birth Defects 20 Times More Likely Among Infants Born To Women Infected With Zika During…

The Guardian: Nervous system birth defects 20 times likelier for Zika-hit mothers, study finds “Pregnant women infected with Zika are 20 times more likely to give birth to children with central nervous system birth defects such as abnormally small heads, a study from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has found…” (Glenza, 3/2).…More

World Birth Defects Day 2017 Raises Global Awareness of Birth Defects 

Jennifer Williams, MSN, MPH, FNP-BC Every year, about 3% to 6% of infants worldwide are born with a serious birth defect. Birth defects can affect an infant regardless of birthplace, race or ethnicity. In some countries, birth defects are a leading cause of death for babies and young children. Those who survive and live with these conditions have an increased risk of lifelong disabilities.

Climate Change Affecting Global Public Health, Facilitating Spread Of Some Diseases,…

Huffington Post: There’s A Reason Zika Virus Became A Pandemic In 2015 “The term ‘climate change’ may bring to mind images of stranded polar bears in faraway places, but the globe’s changing weather also has serious and immediate health consequences for human beings — especially those who live in poor and developing countries. But when…More

In Letter, Members Of Congress Urge U.S. Army Not To Exclusively License Experimental Zika…

STAT: Lawmakers urge U.S. Army not to issue exclusive license to Sanofi for a Zika vaccine “Nearly a dozen members of Congress are urging the U.S. Army not to issue an exclusive license to Sanofi Pasteur to develop a vaccine for the Zika virus over concerns the product may be priced too high for many…More

NPR Launches Series On ‘Killer Viruses,’ Including Story On U.S.-Sponsored Virus Hunter…

NPR: Why Killer Viruses Are On The Rise “…We’re in the middle of Malaysia’s Borneo rain forest. [EcoHealth Alliance virus hunter Kevin Olival] has brought us here because this is the type of place where pandemics are born. HIV came from a rain forest. So did Ebola. Yellow fever

International Attention On Zika Must Focus On Affected Individuals, Long-Term Consequences

The Lancet: Another kind of Zika public health emergency Editorial Board “…It would be tempting to laud the Zika response as a success and redirect attention to other emergent issues. To do so would ignore the continued spread of Zika virus and its under-appreciated long-term effects. As WHO shifts direction under a new director general,…More

Zika Prevention Efforts Must Take Into Account Gender, Socioeconomic Inequalities

The Conversation: The campaign to eradicate Zika has trampled over women’s rights Pia Riggirozzi, associate professor at the University of Southampton “…[S]hifting responsibility for [Zika] to women’s behavior isolates the disease from other socioeconomic factors that influence its transmission, such as sanitation or environmental issues. It means responses have tended to focus on the ‘immediate’…More

Fear Of Zika Wanes In Recife, Brazil, But Affected Families Feel ‘Lasting Harm,’ Washington…

Washington Post: The panic is over at Zika’s epicenter. But for many, the struggle has just begun. “…A year after U.N. health officials declared Zika a global emergency, the city that produced some of the outbreak’s most terrifying and indelible images of badly deformed infants feels like a place that has mostly moved on. But…More

WHO, PAHO Staff Discuss Experiences Controlling Zika Virus

WHO: Zika: Then, now, and tomorrow This WHO feature includes articles by Enrique Vazquez, coordinator for communicable diseases and health analysis at PAHO/WHO Brazil, and Nedret Emiroglu, director of health emergencies and communicable diseases at the WHO Regional Office for Europe, on their experiences preparing for and managing the Zika virus in their regions (February…More

Update on Zika Diagnostic Tests and WHO’s Related Activities

by Arlene Chua, Irena Prat, Claudius Micha Nuebling, David Wood, Francis Moussy

Fewer Zika Cases In Latin America This Year But All Countries Must Remain Vigilant, WHO Says

Reuters: Zika ebbing in Latin America but vigilance needed: WHO “Brazil and Latin America are recording lower numbers of Zika infections than last year, but all countries must remain vigilant against the virus which can cause birth defects, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Wednesday…” (Nebehay, 2/1).

WHO Director-General Chan Reflects On Latin America Zika Outbreak, Spread Of Disease Worldwide

WHO: Zika: We must be ready for the long haul Margaret Chan, director general of the WHO, reflects on the Zika outbreak, which the WHO declared a public health emergency of international concern from February to November 2016. Chan writes, “In large parts of the world, the virus is now firmly entrenched. WHO and affected…More

New Congress, Administration Should Develop National Biodefense Strategy, Implementation Plan

The Hill: Congress needs to act now to prevent another biodisaster like anthrax, Zika Jeff Schlegelmilch, deputy director of the National Center for Disaster Preparedness at Columbia University’s Earth Institute, and Ellen P. Carlin, senior health and policy adviser for EcoHealth Alliance “In December, [President Obama] signed into law the 2017 National Defense Authorization Act…More

MSF Criticizes U.S. Army’s Decision To Grant Sanofi Exclusive Rights To Experimental Zika…

Devex: Zika vaccine could be delayed, unaffordable after U.S. Army grants exclusive rights to pharma company “The U.S. Army’s plan to grant exclusive rights to a promising Zika vaccine to a major pharmaceutical company has raised questions about whether that threatens its future affordability and availability to people in developing countries. … The humanitarian aid…More

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