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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…

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…

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…

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]…

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…

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…

WFP Resumes Food Aid Delivery In Northern Mali Amid NGO Warnings Of Increasing Need

“Communities in northern Mali are in need of humanitarian intervention following the recent military operations in Gao and Timbuktu, leading non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to call for deliveries of food aid, fuel and even currency notes,” Inter Press Service reports (Haddad, 2/5). On Tuesday, U.N. World Food Programme spokesperson Elisabeth Byrs said the…

South African Government Should Take Responsibility For HIV/AIDS Treatment

Noting the many successes of PEPFAR, Stuart Rennie, co-principal investigator of NIH/Fogarty bioethics grants for the Democratic Republic of Congo and South Africa, writes in his “Global Bioethics Blog,” “HIV requires lifelong treatment, and it is not healthy to have your existence depend on the decisions of a foreign government,…

Demand For Family Planning Services Growing In Malawi Despite Challenges

IRIN examines access to family planning services in Malawi, where women have an average of 5.8 children and the population is expected to grow from 15 million in 2010 to 50 million in 2050, according to the news service. A study (.pdf) by the African Institute for Development Policy and Population Action International…