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French Maternal And Child Health Clinics Threatened By Poor Economy

NPR’s KQED on Wednesday examined how France’s 60-year-old network of preventive health clinics for children and parents, which provides care free-of-charge, is being threatened by the nation’s flailing economy. “[W]hile it’s unlikely that France will abandon its maternal and child health programs, it remains an open question whether social changes and economic reality might intrude into such a sacred French ideal,” the article states (Varney, 7/27).

IRIN Examines Cote d'Ivoire's Temporary Policy Of Free Health Care

While Cote d’Ivoire studies several options for financing public health services, its temporary policy of providing free care – “which the government said was aimed to help people after the post-election crisis – is causing grief for doctors and patients alike,” IRIN reports.

USAID Announces Saving Lives At Birth Challenge Finalists

USAID on Friday announced 77 finalists in the Saving Lives at Birth: A Grand Challenge for Development who will compete in a final review process at the DevelopmentXChange in Washington, DC, at the end of July, according to a USAID press release (7/15). The list of finalists is available online.

Simple Steps Can Improve Malaria Prevention

Megan Fotheringham, a public health adviser with the President’s Malaria Initiative, describes in a post on USAID’s “IMPACTblog” how a program in Kenya succeeded in improving the administration of malaria prevention therapy among pregnant women in the country’s Gem District simply by sending a memo to antenatal clinics describing when to…

Scientific American Presents Slide Show On MTCT Prevention

UNICEF’s goal of eliminating mother-to-child HIV transmission by 2015 is “ambitious … but not impossible,” Scientific American reports. The magazine presents a slide show that “explores what is needed to stop mother-to-child HIV transmission by 2015, following Inonge Siamalambo and her baby Elson of Lusaka, Zambia, through their 18-month commitment to a transmission prevention program” (Diep, 7/13).

Foreign Aid Helps Lift Families Out Of Poverty

Britain’s cutting of foreign assistance “is not … just a game of percentages; or a simple set of myths that can be countered to decide whether we spend 0.7 or 0.44 or even 0.01 percent of our national income on ‘aid,'” Joe Cerrell, director of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s…

Foreign Policy Examines HIV Epidemic In Swaziland

Foreign Policy examines the HIV epidemic in Swaziland, where nearly one-fifth of residents are infected. Because of the country’s high per capita infection rate, “[o]ne might expect HIV to slap you in the face. But there are no buildings collapsed by an HIV earthquake, no towns flooded by an HIV tsunami. No zombie-sick people dripping HIV from their eyeballs. You don’t see obvious signs of it outside of the clinics and hospitals or the privacy of homesteads,” the article states. While “Swaziland’s HIV orphans present a frightening problem for the country’s future,” the piece describes one program, called Pasture Valley, that is helping a couple dozen orphans gain an education and health care (Raviv, 7/12).