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Uganda’s Childhood Immunization Programs Face Challenges, IRIN Reports

“Inadequate funding, a shortage of health staff, and poor adherence to vaccination schedules are some of the reasons for declining immunization levels in Uganda, which experts say threatens efforts to reduce preventable deaths among children,” IRIN reports. “The main challenge has been establishing an immunization program that can function smoothly year after…

Africa, Middle East See Decline In Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting, U.N. Data Show

“Changing attitudes have resulted in a decline in female genital mutilation in Africa and the Middle East, where the practice is most prevalent, according to United Nations data released on” the International Day of Zero Tolerance to Female Genital Mutilation, observed February 6, TrustLaw reports (Mollins, 2/6). According to a WHO press…

Chiefs Play Important Role In Decreasing Maternal Mortality In Malawi

If Malawi President Joyce Banda’s mission to decrease the country’s high maternal mortality rate is to succeed, “it will depend, in part, on her government’s ability to harness the country’s true power brokers, Malawi’s 20,000 village chiefs — and sensitize them to the dangers of women giving birth with [unskilled]…

Nine Polio Workers Killed In Northern Nigeria

“Nine female polio vaccinators have been killed in two shootings at health centers in northern Nigeria, police have told the BBC,” the news agency reports. “In the first attack in Kano the polio vaccinators were shot dead by gunmen who drove up on a motor tricycle,” and “[t]hirty minutes later gunmen…

Zimbabwe Faces Challenges In Preventing, Treating Cervical Cancer, PlusNews Reports

“HIV-positive women are living longer, but are now dying of cervical cancer,” and “[i]n Zimbabwe, cervical cancer is now the most common cancer among women, particularly those living with HIV,” PlusNews reports. “According to the Zimbabwe National Cancer Registry, cervical cancer affects about 30 percent of women in the country,” the news…

Global Response To Possible H5N1 Flu Outbreak Could Affect Epidemic’s Course

“It’s been a rough flu season this winter in the United States and Europe, but it could be worse. A lot worse,” science writer Carl Zimmer states in National Geographic’s “Phenomena: The Loom” blog. In other parts of the world, including Egypt, India and Cambodia, the H5N1 avian influenza strain…

Former U.N. Official Criticizes NGO Efforts To Campaign For Aid To Sudanese

“The former head of the U.N. in Sudan has criticized [non-governmental organizations (NGOs)] for failing to campaign for aid to flow to people trapped in a war zone on the border with South Sudan,” the Guardian reports. “Mukesh Kapila, who crossed into the war zone without government permission during a visit last…

WFP To Feed 1.6M People In Somalia This Year, Agency Reports

“The World Food Programme (WFP) reports it plans to feed 1.6 million people in Somalia this year, including more than one million people who are in a state of crisis” because of an ongoing insurgency by the Islamist militant group al-Shabab, VOA News writes. WFP “reports the situation in Somalia is somewhat…