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What do we palliate? Caring for the sick and the poor

José1 is a man in his sixties from rural Guatemala with cancer spread to his bones. He describes deep aches of his shoulders and hips, Read More

How to take morphine in rural Guatemala

Rosa is a 59-year-old woman dying1 of a broken heart: in her heart is a hole that surgeons cannot fix, and the irregular flow of Read More

The God of empty spaces: Thoughts on religion and civil society in neoliberal Guatemala

The other day I visited Lydia, a 56-year-old Maya woman who lives with her family in the highlands of Guatemala and has for many years Read More

Latest

Gender Equality Common Thread Among 17 Sustainable Development Goals, U.N. Official Says

U.N. News Centre: All 17 Global Goals interrelated, with strong links to gender equality — senior U.N. official “Addressing challenges faced by women in the world of work is a key theme for a United Nations forum on leveraging the power of partnerships to drive the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). ‘The important…More


U.S. Should Address FGM, Prioritize Women, Girls’ Rights

Forbes: Let’s Prioritize Protecting Girls Carrie Lukas, managing director of the Independent Women’s Forum “…We should call on American leaders to prioritize encouraging countries around the globe to recognize women’s human rights and make progress toward women’s full and equal participation in society. U.S. policy leaders should also double down on their commitment to ensuring…More


Time to take the conversation on adolescent health out of airconditioned conference rooms, and…

From October 27th to 29th, New Delhi, a wonderfully vibrant, colorful and youthful city, hosted over 1000 delegates and 125 youths from 65 different countries exploring issues related to adolescent health. The 11th World Congress on Adolescent Health, themed “Investing in Adolescent Health – The Future is now” was organized by the International Association for Adolescent Health in partnership with donors and consortium partners. As two public health researchers working in the field of adolescent health in Tanzania, we were more than happy to be at the conference, as you can imagine. The event featured 8 keynote lectures, 4 plenaries, 3 debates, 81 oral presentations and over 100 poster presentations.


Is the Future of Global Healthcare Made in China?

On the 15th of August 2017 the newly appointed director of WHO Tedros Adhanom made his first official visit to China. After three days Tedros left with a pledge of 20 million dollars more and a clarified plan to use China’s One belt One Road initiative as the backbone of global healthcare reforms targeting women, children, teens and emergencies. This is just the latest in China’s growing trend of commitment to global health, clearly a different tone than that being set by US President Donald Trump whose most recent budget proposal saw him attempting to slash international healthcare funding by 1/3. Although China has been engaging in health aid from the Mao era on, China’s “global health” journey really began eleven years ago for China, after the SARS epidemic, with an overhaul of their own healthcare system called the Rural Co-operative Medical Care System. This initiative extended healthcare options to China’s 800 million rural resident and expanded China’s current healthcare coverage to 94.7% of its population


10 Best resources for community engagement in implementation research

AbstractImplementation research (IR) focuses on understanding how and why interventions produce their effects in a given context.


Don’t be afraid of the “C” word, health researchers

“Class”- a word that (most) researchers are more than reluctant to employ. Don’t get me wrong, analysis of health inequalities based on income, poverty, socioeconomic gradients and so on abound. Sophisticated statistical tools are being used to show us the obvious – that health outcomes are poor for those with fewer resources, no matter which country they belong to. We call them the poor, the “grassroots”, the “left behind”.


We all have to die of something, so why bother being healthy?

0000-0002-1767-4576It’s 6:45 on a cold and rainy Tuesday morning. The alarm blares. As you begin to wake and wonder how it could possibly be morning already, your good intentions dawn on you. It’s run morning – and it’s the last thing you want to do.


Exploring the Debate Smorgasbord at ECTMIH2017

Having previously never attended a tropical medicine conference, I was equal parts excited and apprehensive about ECTMIH. I wondered if I would find anything to suit my non-clinical, non-biomedical interests, and yes, I admit I was being a bit finicky, seeing as the congress was supposed to be focusing on tropical Medicine. Anyway, it turns out my fears were unfounded as I found a variety of sessions that appealed to me. I immediately picked out the debates, because as an avid ex-debater myself, and someone who studied in the post-colonial school system of Nigeria (modelled after the British system), I always look forward to the fiery exchange of views that takes place in these sessions.


Turn left, then right: political changes in Latin America and their impact on health systems

As you might have noticed, Latin America is going through a period of important political changes and turmoil. As the political pendulum is swinging back, more and more conservative (or downright neoliberal) governments are replacing the democratic, progressive ones that were prevailing in previous years. These changes have a number of causes, among others the fact that many voters have perhaps grown a bit tired of these progressive governments after some years in power (as is the case in all democracies with incumbents), the lack of effectiveness of their administration, as well as a perception of (too much) political patronage, bureaucracy and corruption. Importantly, however, a structured strategy from right-wing politicians and parties to remove progressive governments from power (and ditch their policies) also played a key role, via so-called parliamentary coups d’état, ultimately ‘soft’ versions of the ones that have taken place in previous decades in the region. This strategy has been put into action since June 2009, when the Honduran Congress resolved the destitution of President Manuel Zelaya, considering that his government’s actions were violating the Constitution and the judiciary order of the Central American country.


Development Finance Institutions Could Act As Tool To Advance Global Health

Friends of the Global Fight: Leveraging Development Finance Institutions for Better Health Berk Ehrmantraut, communications intern at Friends of the Global Fight, discusses takeaways from an event at the Center for Strategic and International Studies during which experts discussed the value of development finance institutions (DFIs) in advancing global health and ending the AIDS, TB,…More


Let’s get political…

The ninth edition of the World Health Summit (WHS) was held during October 15th -17th, in a nice former cinema hall in the city of East Berlin, built in the early 1960s and with a rather appropriate name for the occasion, “Kosmos”.  This year, the event was attended by 2,000 participants from 100 countries, all aiming “to improve healthcare all over the world”. Well, at least, that’s the idea. Although I was a bit afraid this would be a “mini Davos-like” event, as described (arguably, by a biased observer)  in past editions, it was surprising and even encouraging to see a good demographic balance, with very young students and professionals, as well as senior high-profile researchers, decision-makers and CEOs from pharmaceutical companies, among other usual suspects. Even a royal member of the Kingdom of Jordan, Princess Dina Mired, actively participated as the President-Elect of the Union for International Cancer Control


Global challenges of health in the workplace

Over 54% of the world’s population live in urban areas, and over the next decade the growth of cities is expected to be greatest in Africa – the part of the world currently the least covered by workplace health. If we get this right, the potential to improve human wellbeing is vast. Evidence of the effectiveness of workplace health (or ‘wellness’) programmes is often unclear, and in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) the evidence is particularly thin. I have recently been investigating workplace health in LMICs* – desk research and a series of key informant interviews (India, China, South Africa, Brazil and Argentina) – and, while many of the challenges are problems for workplaces everywhere, they are often more acute in lower-income countries. A 2016 survey of 430 organisations found that the top three workplace-health issues globally are all related to non-communicable diseases (NCDs): poor nutrition, physical inactivity and stress.


U.N. Announces First-Ever Roadmap To Prevent Zoonotic TB, Lessen Impacts On Rural Communities…

U.N. News Centre: U.N. and partners launch plan to stop transmission of bovine tuberculosis to humans “Stressing the damaging impact on poor rural communities in Africa and South-East Asia of animal tuberculosis’ (bovine TB) transmission to humans, United Nations health experts launched the first-ever roadmap to combat the so-called zoonotic TB…” (10/12). VOA News: WHO…More


Brookings Podcast Discusses Challenges Facing U.S. Foreign Assistance

Brookings Institution’s “Brookings Cafeteria Podcast”: Voices on U.S. foreign assistance under challenge, part 1: U.S. leadership, fragile states, and ideas for reform In this podcast, Fred Dews, managing editor for New Digital Products at Brookings, speaks with George Ingram, senior fellow in the Global Economy and Development program at Brookings, and other experts on challenges…More


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