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Sending Surplus Medical Supplies To Developing Country Hospitals 'Not The Antidote' To Poor Conditions

“Every year, hospitals in America throw away thousands of tons of usable medical supplies and equipment – by some measures 7,000 tons a year, a value of $20 billion. … Yet every year, hospitals in developing countries around the world turn away patients or provide substandard care because they lack even the most basic medical equipment,” journalist and author Tina Rosenberg writes in the New York Times’ “Opinionator” blog. She describes the work of several organizations that collect excess or unwanted medical supplies and redistribute them to hospitals in need in developing countries.

Feed The Future Working To Improve Drought Resiliency

Food insecurity in the Horn of Africa “is driven by cyclical drought, poor land management practices, limited availability of animal health services, food inflation, conflict over land and water, poor hygiene practices, and lack of dietary diversity,” Paul Weisenfeld, assistant to the administrator, Bureau of Food Security at USAID, writes…

Low Fertility Causes 'Very Real Problems' For Developed Nations' Economies

“In recent years, nearly every demographic study has painted a dire picture of the world’s changing demographics. Yet when the U.N. issued its latest report this past May, it seemed almost sunny,” Jonathan Last, senior writer at the Weekly Standard, writes in a Wall Street Journal opinion piece. He says that “[t]he catch is that it may not be true” because “the U.N. has had to make one very big assumption: Starting tomorrow, every country in the world with fertility below the replacement rate of 2.10 will increase its fertility. And this rise will continue unabated, year after year, until every First World country has a Total Fertility Rate (TFR) near replacement.”

U.S., Western Governments Can Help Prevent 'Mass Starvation' In Somalia

With the State Department’s reassurance to aid groups on Tuesday that they “will not face prosecution if they are forced to pay bribes to al-Shabab or if militants divert some food supplies,” organizations still have “the problem of gaining access to famine victims and ensuring the safety of their personnel, a number of whom have been murdered by the militants,” a Washington Post editorial says. “But the crisis may be causing al-Shabab’s cohesion to break down; some commanders have been cutting deals with aid organizations to receive food supplies,” the editorial states.

'Political Resolve' Needed To End World Hunger

“[A]s the worst drought in 60 years again devastates the Horn of Africa, throwing as many as 12 million into desperate hunger … there are hopeful signs that today’s drought need not result in the tens of thousands of deaths that we saw in earlier decades,” World Food Programme Executive Director Josette Sheeran writes in the Reuters blog “The Great Debate.”

World Must Scale Up AIDS Fight, Even As Donors Scale Back

UNAIDS Executive Director Michel Sidibe writes in a Los Angeles Times opinion piece that “amid all the good news” about HIV prevention recently presented at the 6th International AIDS Society Conference on HIV Pathogenesis, Treatment and Prevention, “one stubborn fact was hard to ignore: AIDS remains a metaphor for inequality.” With discrepancies in access to HIV treatment and prevention between developed and developing countries, “[i]t is hard not to conclude from all this that life is not valued equally across the world. This is morally wrong and unacceptable,” he writes.

Reducing Commodity Costs For ARVs Could Mean Providing Treatment To Millions More People

“Reducing commodity costs [for antiretroviral drugs] by a mere five to 10 percent can represent hundreds of millions of dollars in savings for the global community. In turn these savings translate into millions of more patients who can receive access to life-saving treatment,” David de Ferranti, president of Results for Development Institute (R4D), and Kanika Bahl, managing director at R4D, write in a Huffington Post opinion piece. They discuss a strategic plan for increasing access to and lowering the cost of antiretroviral drugs (ARVs) that R4D developed for the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.

New HIV/AIDS Findings To Shape PEPFAR Policies And Programs

With recent scientific advancements in HIV prevention “transforming the way we think about AIDS,” PEPFAR’s “task is to translate new science into policy to inform programs,” U.S. Global AIDS Coordinator Ambassador Eric Goosby writes in a post on the State Department’s “DipNote” blog. “To do this, we are working with the…

Cutting Foreign Aid Is Shortsighted Solution To U.S. Budget Woes

“Haggling in Congress over bills to fund the state department and foreign operations in 2012 are worrying for those of us seeking to address global poverty and climate change, and respond to famine and other disasters,” Samuel Worthington, president and CEO of InterAction, writes in the Guardian’s “Poverty Matters Blog.”