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U.N. MDG Summit Begins; UNAIDS Data Shows 22 African Countries See Drop In New HIV Infections

“Ten years after world leaders set the most ambitious goals ever to tackle global poverty, they are meeting again to try to spur action to meet the targets by the 2015 deadline – which the U.N. says will be difficult, if not impossible, in some cases,” the Associated Press reports. More than 140 world leaders are scheduled to participate in the three-day U.N. Summit on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), which kicks off Monday.

Recent Releases In Global Health

Lancet Editorial Makes Recommendations For Health-System Strengthening “There is strong consensus in the global health community, among donors, recipient countries, and policy makers, about the need for health system strengthening in low-income and middle-income countries,” write the authors of a Lancet Comment. The article recommends areas in health-system strengthening that…

Ten Million Face Hunger In Central Africa; Niger Flooding Exacerbates Food Shortage, Leaves 200,000 Homeless

Flash floods have “worsened an already chronic humanitarian crisis caused by drought” in central Africa where aid agencies have warned that “10 million people are already facing severe food shortages, particularly in the landlocked countries of Chad and Niger, after a drought led to the failure of last year’s crops,” the Independent reports. “Now unusually heavy rains [in Niger] have washed away this year’s crops and killed cattle in a region dependent on subsistence agriculture,” and where only 40 percent of people affected by the food shortages are receiving aid, according to the agencies, including Oxfam and Save the Children.

Also In Global Health News: GM Mosquitoes; Iodine Deficiency In Nepal; South African Health Workers Strike; Novartis To Build Vaccine Plant In Brazil; Population Control In Niger

Malaysia Considers GM Mosquito Release To Control Dengue Fever Malaysia is still “considering releasing” up to 3,000 mosquitoes that are genetically modified to “combat dengue fever, in a landmark field trial that has come in for criticism from environmentalists,” Agence France-Presse reports. The insects are modified “so that their offspring quickly die,” which…

WHO Calls On Countries To Prevent, Control Spread Of Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria

Amid the growing threat of antimicrobial resistance, the WHO on Friday urged countries to take greater action to limit the spread of drug-resistant bacteria, CIDRAP News reports. “Calling such pathogens ‘a growing and global public health problem,’ the WHO said, ‘Countries should be prepared to implement hospital infection control measures to limit the spread of multi-drug resistant strains and to reinforce national policy on prudent use of antibiotics, reducing the generation of antibiotic resistant bacteria,'” according to the news service (Roos, 8/20).

Cholera Outbreaks On The Rise, WHO Expert Says

A recent increase in the number of cholera outbreaks is threatening populations in pockets of the world, WHO’s cholera group coordinator Claire-Lise Chaignat, said on Thursday, Agence France-Presse reports.