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Health Worker Training Program Cuts Stillbirths By 30% In 6 Developing Countries, Study Says

The rate of stillbirths was cut by more than 30 percent after health workers in rural parts of six developing countries were trained “in how to help a newborn start breathing and to keep it warm and clean,” according to a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine, Reuters reports. The trainees – who included midwives, nurses, traditional birth attendants and physicians – were given “hand-held pumps and masks to fill babies’ lungs with air if they were not breathing at birth, clean-delivery kits to prevent infection and scales to measure their weight,” the news service writes.

Obama Administration Nominates Former Clinton Adviser To Lead UNICEF

The Obama administration has nominated former Clinton administration adviser Anthony Lake to lead UNICEF, Bloomberg/BusinessWeek reports. He would succeed Ann Veneman, who will step down at the end of her five-year term on April 30 (Varner, 2/18).

Senators Durbin, Brown Travel To Africa To Focus On Health, Other Issues

U.S. senators Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) and Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) departed Friday “for a trip to Africa,” the Associated Press/Chicago Tribune reports. The Senators “planned to visit Tanzania, Congo, Ethiopia and Sudan. They were expected to return to the United States on Feb. 19” (2/13).

Also In Global Health News: Boosting Banana Production; Measles Vaccines In Bangladesh; NTDs; Burkina Faso Maternal Care; Health Care, HIV In South Africa

Moderate Fertilizer Use Could Double Banana Production In East Africa, Improve Food Security A study of almost 200 farms in Uganda, funded by USAID and carried out by the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), found that moderate use of mineral fertilizers could double banana production in East Africa and…

Recent Releases In Global Health

Lancet Comment Examines Interconnectedness Of Global Health, Public Health “Global health and public health are indistinguishable,” according to a Lancet Comment that examines the interconnectedness of the fields. “Yet global health is still often perceived as international aid, technologies, and interventions flowing from the wealthier countries of the global north…

Opinions: Rebuilding Haiti

Healthcare, Agriculture, Education Need To Be Top Priorities In Rebuilding Of Haiti   In a Baltimore Sun opinion piece, Richard Santos – president and CEO of IMA World Health, a non-profit that provides health care services and supplies – describes what he sees as the top three priorities for the rebuilding of Haiti,…

Also In Global Health News: China’s Health Care System; Breastfeeding Practices In Pakistan; HIV Transmission In MSM; Abu Dhabi Joins Malaria Fight

Los Angeles Times Examines China’s Health Care Overhaul The Los Angeles Times examines China’s transition to “Western-style privatized medicine” through the government’s “$124-billion overhaul, chiefly to improve service in rural areas.” The article details the efforts of a woman from Inner Mongolia to get care in Beijing for her ailing…

Opinions: U.S. Global Health Initiative; WHO And H1N1

U.S. Isn’t Backing Off Its Commitments To International Health President Barack Obama’s FY2011 budget demonstrates that the U.S. “isn’t backing off its commitment to aid other nations,” according to a VOA News editorial by the U.S. government. “Specifically, President Obama is proposing to boost U.S. efforts to promote health and…

WFP Has Reached 600,000 Haitians With Food Voucher Plan

On Thursday, a food distribution voucher campaign that launched last Sunday, “hit all 16 fixed distribution points around the capital” of Port-au-Prince, CNN reports. “So far, 600,000 people affected by the devastating January 12 earthquake have been able to collect food under this plan, said Marcus Prior, spokesman for the United Nations World Food Programme. ‘We’re encouraged by the way the system is working to get food out into the city to those in need, but still have a long way to go,’ Prior said” (Basu, 2/5).

$1.2B Needed To Aid Women, Children In 28 Countries ‘In Crisis,’ UNICEF Says

UNICEF on Thursday launched a $1.2 billion appeal aimed at providing “life saving emergency assistance to millions of children and women in dire need,” VOA News reports (Schlein, 2/4). “The appeal is part of UNICEF’s Humanitarian Action Report 2010, released in Geneva … which spotlights the desperate situation of children and women in 28 countries and territories facing deep humanitarian crises,” the U.N. News Centre writes (2/4).