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WHO Regional Meeting In South-East Asia Addresses Antimicrobial Resistance, Developing Country Access To Medical Devices

During the WHO’s 63rd Regional Committee Session for South-East Asia in Bangkok on Wednesday the WHO called for enhanced “efforts at the national and international level to preserve the efficacy of antimicrobial agents through the rational use of antibiotics,” Indian Express reports (Thacker, 9/9). The appeal follows the news of a Lancet study published last month which identified a gene that enables bacteria to resist most antibiotics and documented an increase in the prevalence of the gene in parts of Bangladesh, India and Pakistan (Kaiser Daily Global Health Policy Report, 8/11).

Researchers Map Malaria Parasite P Vivax; Nearly 3B People At Risk Of Infection In 2009

A new evidence-based map estimates that in 2009 2.85 billion people lived “at risk of infection” with the malaria parasite Plasmodium vivax, reports BMJ News. A new study, published in PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases, shows P vivax “is more widespread and potentially represents a greater burden on human health in some parts of the world than P falciparum, the species usually associated with the greatest mortality and morbidity,” BMJ News writes (Moszynski, 8/3).

Asian Ministers Review MDGs Progress

South Asia is “lagging behind” in poverty and hunger reduction and is “in danger” of missing key Millennium Development Goal (MDG) targets, a U.N. official told Asian ministers gathered to discuss MDGs progress, Agence France-Presse reports. At the meeting, “senior officials told delegates from dozens of countries that global food, energy and financial crises in recent years had jeopardized progress toward achieving the goals set for 2015,” the news service writes.

ASEAN Representatives Participate In Week-Long Exercise Aimed At Improving Region’s Pandemic Response

A group of experts from Southeast Asia gathered in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, on Monday for the start of a week-long exercise to help bolster “the capabilities of [Association of Southeast Asian Nations] ASEAN member states, both individually and collectively, to prepare for and respond to a severe pandemic with potentially devastating effects on the region,” Agence France-Presse reports (8/17).

Also In Global Health News: Disaster Preparedness In Asian Health Sector; PEPFAR In Uganda; Malnutrition In Chad

IRIN Examines Disaster Preparedness In Asian Health Sectors IRIN reports on disaster preparedness in Asian health sectors. According to the news service, nine countries working with Bangkok-based Asian Disaster Preparedness Center (ADPC) “have emergency preparedness plans in place for their health sectors.” The article includes comments by Frederick John Abo…

Wall Street Journal Reports On Pharma’s Growing Interest In Emerging Markets

“Abbott Laboratories will soon acquire the biggest share of India’s pharmaceuticals market, about 7%, when the company closes as early as next month on a $3.7 billion takeover of the drugs business of Piramal Healthcare Ltd.,” the Wall Street Journal reports in an article that examines how pharmaceutical companies are tapping into emerging markets as a way to bolster sales.

Temperature Increases Could Slow Rice Production, Study Says

A study published online Monday in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences found that anticipated temperature increases “could slow the growth of rice production unless farmers adapt by changing management practices and switch to more heat-tolerant varieties,” Reuters reports (Fogarty, 8/10).