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WHO Director-General Turns Attention To Conditions In Slums To Mark World Health Day

WHO Director-General Margaret Chan said addressing living conditions in the world’s slums is important to improving urban health – the focus of World Health Day on Wednesday, Agence France-Presse reports. “By 2030, six out of 10 people will be city dwellers, rising to seven out of 10 people by 2050, with explosive growth in Asia and Africa, according to Chan,” the news service writes (4/7).

Also In Global Health News: E. Africa Counterfeit Drugs; CDC’s EIS; HIV Antibodies; Measles In Zimbabwe; Agriculture In Rwanda; Recovered Global Fund Money

Groups In E. Africa Warn Anti-Counterfeit Policy Will Compromise Patients’ Access To Medicines “East African countries risk not attaining the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) on universal treatment of people living with HIV and AIDS, malaria and other diseases if the region’s parliament adopts the anti-counterfeits policy and bill currently under…

Wall Street Journal Examines Railway Hospital In India

The Wall Street Journal examines Lifeline Express, “the world’s first hospital on rails,” which is run by Impact India, a group that “initially focused on immunization and prevention of diseases such as polio and malaria.” Its success has spread to China and Zimbabwe, where three Lifeline Express trains are operated, and to “hospital river boats based on the India model have been set up to tend to patients in Bangladesh and Cambodia.” It has also been used as a model for other health projects in India, according to the newspaper.

Bloomberg Examines Potential Benefits, Drawbacks To PrEP

“Gilead Sciences Inc. may learn this year whether its drugs for treating HIV can also stop people from catching the virus in the first place,” Bloomberg writes in a piece that examines the potential benefits and drawbacks to using low-doses of HIV/AIDS medications to reduce a person’s risk of becoming infected with HIV. According to the news service, the initial results of 10 trials including more than 20,000 people could be available as early as July.

U.N. Releases Report On Poverty In Afghanistan

A new U.N. report (.pdf) finds that “the majority of Afghans live in dire poverty, despite an estimated $35 billion in aid being poured into the country between 2002 to 2009,” the Associated Press reports.

Family Planning, Access To Safe, Legal Abortion Key To Maternal, Child Health, U.S. Sec. Of State Says

Following a two-day meeting of foreign ministers from G8 countries in Quebec on Tuesday, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton “appeared at odds… with [Canadian] Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s G8 initiative on maternal and child health, saying family planning, contraception and access to legal, safe abortions were vital elements of maternal health care,” Canwest News Service/Ottawa Citizen report (O’Neill, 3/31).

Also In Global Health News: Asia’s ‘Double Burden'; Guinea Worm Eradication; ARV, Antibiotic Treatment; Sierra Leone’s Medical Workers; Melinda Gates In India

Asians Facing ‘Double Burden’ Of Disease, Health Experts Warn During a two-day healthcare conference in Asia, health experts on Monday encouraged the governments of Asian countries to draft plans to tackle the long-term costs associated with chronic illnesses, Reuters reports. “Asia is facing a double burden,” of disease, said Bruce…

GlaxoSmithKline, Pfizer Will Supply 600M Doses Of Reduced-Price Pneumococcal Vaccines To Developing Countries Over 10 Years, GAVI Says

The GAVI Alliance on Tuesday formally announced that drugmakers GlaxoSmithKline and Pfizer had signed off on a “10-year deal … to supply 60 million doses a year of cut-price pneumococcal vaccines to developing nations,” Reuters reports. The agreement is under what’s “called an Advance Market Commitment (AMC) which guarantees a market for vaccines supplied to poor nations but sets a maximum price drugmakers can expect to receive,” the news service writes (Kelland, 3/23).

Also In Global Health News: Child, Maternal Mortality; AIDS 2010; Food Aid To N. Korea; Millennium Challenge Corporation; Family Planning Conference; Parasitic Disease Test

AU Summit To Examine Progress Toward Child, Maternal Mortality MDGs When leaders of African states gather for the African Union summit in Kampala, Uganda, in July, they will assess the continent’s progress towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals relating to child and maternal mortality, Isaac Musumba, Uganda’s state minister for…