The burden of the gift of aid

The splendor of Lake Atitlán is unreal. No water should be so blue, no sky so clear, no hills so lush. The lake is a Read More

Think scale! Engaging Private Pharmacies to Improve Public Health 

A version of this story first appeared on IDSA’s Science Speaks platform By Emily Delmotte Lisinopril 20 mg by mouth at 8am? Check. After verifying the Read More

Rural Guatemala. Photo by Rob Tinworth, used with permission.

Food Producing Communities as Food Deserts

The view from Xejuyu’ is breathtaking: green fields of fresh berries, feathery carrot tops, and blossoming broccoli line the mountainsides. The majority of the residents Read More


The WHO Global conference on NCDs in Montevideo, Uruguay: Towards an integral response to the…

On behalf of the Latin American Network for Multidisciplinary Research on Chronic Diseases A 46-year-old woman affected by a heart attack in Zimbabwe, a (male) heavy smoker aged 68 and recently diagnosed with lung cancer in Australia, a 52-year-old Indonesian man with neurological stroke sequelae due to long-term undiagnosed hypertension, …  All of them share underlying determinants and face the consequences of a rising global epidemic: non-communicable diseases (NCDs), as they are commonly labelled. These “socially transmitted conditions”—as some (other) people would prefer to call them—are  estimated to account for 63% of global mortality nowadays. It is predicted that they will account for around 70% of global deaths by 2030, if business continues as usual. Even more importantly, NCDs are also significantly related to preventable premature mortality and disability. Each year, 15 million people between the ages of 30 and 69 die from an NCD.

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

PMI Releases October 2017 Newsletter

PMI: President’s Malaria Initiative Newsletter: October 2017 This newsletter contains announcements, news articles, and publications from or featured by PMI, including information on the initiative’s launch in Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Niger, and Sierra Leone, and the expansion of its program in Burkina Faso (October 2017).

Taking the pulse of heart disease

On Saturday 26 – Wednesday 30 August, the world’s largest cardiovascular congress will take place In Barcelona, Spain. The ESC congress will convene global experts and present advancements in cardiovascular medicine worldwide. To bring us up to speed on all thing cardiovascular health, Dr Anna Beale ‘takes the pulse’ of heart disease in this piece.   In 2017, healthcare spending continues to rise globally. Total health expenditure as a percentage of total GDP increased from 8.5% in 1995 to 9.8% in 2014

Barriers and enablers of kangaroo mother care implementation from a health systems perspective:…

AbstractKangaroo Mother Care (KMC) is an evidence-based intervention that reduces neonatal morbidity and mortality.

USAID Should Narrow Focus, Reduce Global Footprint, Explicitly Support National Security…

Devex: Opinion: Rethinking USAID selection criteria Michael Miklaucic, senior fellow with the Institute for National Strategic Studies, and director of research, information, and publications at the Center for Complex Operations (CCO) at the National Defense University “…[USAID should] repurpose itself to accept a narrower, but more focused role, drastically reduce the scope of its work…More

Vaccination remains the most cost-effective strategy to get on track with hepatitis B…

Midwife providing the 5-in-1 pentavalent vaccine (diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis [DTP], hepatitis B, and Haemophilus influenzae type b) during a routine vaccination session in Myanmar Dr. Rania Tohme, Team Lead, Global Immunization Division, CDC In the 1990s, the Western Pacific Region had one of the highest prevalence rates of chronic hepatitis B infection in the world (>8%). As a result, in 2005, it was the first World Health Organization (WHO) Region to adopt a hepatitis B control goal through vaccination. With the financial support of GAVI (the Vaccine Alliance), countries in the region introduced hepatitis B vaccine into routine immunization, starting with a birth dose followed by 2-3 additional doses.

Measuring the double burden of air pollution

On a recent trip to China to collect data on air pollution as part of the China Kadoorie Biobank prospective cohort study, Ka Hung Chan was struck by the limitations of available personal exposure collection and monitoring devices. Without improved devices and data, we won’t clear the air on pollution in heavily burdened LMICs – and generate much needed political attention and investment in prevention.   In the latest Global Burden of Disease study, ambient and household air pollution* were together ranked the 4th leading risk factors of disease burden (after dietary risks, tobacco smoke and high blood pressure), accounting for 6.5 million premature deaths in 2015. Up to 90% of these deaths occurred in low-and middle-income countries (LMICs), many of which are undergoing industrialisation and suffering from ever-worsening ambient air pollution (AAP), as well as unresolved household air pollution (HAP) from domestic solid fuel use – this is the  ‘double burden of air pollution’.   Available evidence While AAP has been rising on the global public health agenda in recent years, early epidemiological investigations begun after the infamous 1952 London smog event

Multisectoral action for noncommunicable diseases – what, why, how?

developThe Sustainable Development Goals include a target (Target 3.4) to reduce the burden of noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) by one third, by 2030. Several documents guide countries in achieving this target through the implementation of appropriate policy measures, including the Global Action Plan 2013 – 2020. Specifically, a multisectoral approach is one of the key actions recommended for the prevention and control of NCDs. In 2014, the UN high-level meeting (UNHLM) adopted four time-bound commitments to be achieved by 2018. One of them is having an operational multisectoral action plan (MSAP)

Municipal health services provision by local governments: a systematic review of experiences in…

Abstract‘Four’ types of decentralization are distinguished in health care: deconcentration when the shift in authority is to regional or district offices; devolution when the shift is to state, provincial or municipal governments; delegation when semi-autonomous agencies are granted new powers; and privatization when ownership is granted to private entities.

When water doesn’t flow…

I thought it was appendicitis and feared for the worst. The car hit a few potholes and a small crater in the road. My eyes flew open and I dry heaved. ‘You’ve really done it this time, Marisa.

Are good school principals born or can they be made?

Good principals can make a big difference “It is widely believed that a good principal is the key to a successful school.” So say Branch, Hanushek, and Rivkin in their study of school principals on learning productivity. But how do you measure this? Using a database from Texas in the United States, they employ a value-added approach analogous to that used to measure performance among teachers. They control for basic information on student backgrounds (gender, ethnicity, and an indicator of poverty) as well as student test scores from the previous year.

Field report: Workshops on strategic communications & CVE in Balkans

As we posted recently, the ICT4Peace Foundation, with CIJA US in cooperation with BIRN and Talks 2.0 is conducting a series of interactive, hands-on workshops in the Balkans to support community leaders, civil society, independent media and technologists with online communication strategies to effectively respond to online dangerous content in their communities. With direct guidance and feedback, participants leave the workshops with practical ideas about how to carry their project ideas forward. Sanjana Hattotuwa, Special Advisor at the Foundation, is one of the two lead trainers for these workshops

“Appendix III” is critical for accelerating progress on NCDs

Noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) accounted for 70% of global deaths in 2015, with three quarters of these deaths occurring in low and middle income countries (LMICs). NCDs are a silent epidemic of premature and preventable death and disability from diseases such as cancer, diabetes, heart disease, chronic lung disease, and mental and neurological disorders. Their main risk factors – unhealthy diets, alcohol and tobacco use, physical inactivity, and environmental determinants such as air pollution, are transmitted via unhealthy environments. They are directly and indirectly caused by commercial determinants, misaligned public policies in agriculture, commerce, education, energy, health, finance, trade, and social security, and are exacerbated by social determinants including poverty and inequity. In 2011, The United Nations General Assembly declared NCDs a global health and development challenge at a UN High-Level Summit.

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