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Opinions: Health And Living Conditions; H1N1, One Year Later; Global Water Shortages

Better Living Conditions Can Improve Health Former U.S. Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tenn.) and Habitat for Humanity CEO Jonathan Reckford write in an Atlanta Journal-Constitution opinion piece about the need to “address the constant crisis families face daily in deplorable living conditions.” The authors reflect on several health problems associated with unsanitary and crowded living…

WHO Discusses Shortcomings Of Its H1N1 Response

Keiji Fukuda, the WHO’s top influenza expert, on Monday said the organization did not effectively communicate the uncertainties of the H1N1 (swine flu) virus, which led to confusion worldwide, Reuters reports.

Experts Begin Probe Of WHO’s Response To H1N1

Health experts on Monday began a probe of how the WHO responded to the H1N1 (swine flu) pandemic “nearly a year after global alarm was raised over the new swine flu strain,” Agence France-Presse reports (Capella, 4/12).

CDC, Surgeon General Report On Increased Number Of H1N1 Cases In Southeast U.S.

Although H1N1 (swine flu) “has waned across much of the United States, the southeast is reporting an increase in cases of the H1N1 virus, U.S. health officials said on Monday,” Reuters reports. During a conference call with reporters, Anne Schuchat of the CDC reported an uptick in the number of H1N1 cases reported in Alabama, South Carolina and Georgia (Allen, 3/29).

GlaxoSmithKline, Pfizer Will Supply 600M Doses Of Reduced-Price Pneumococcal Vaccines To Developing Countries Over 10 Years, GAVI Says

The GAVI Alliance on Tuesday formally announced that drugmakers GlaxoSmithKline and Pfizer had signed off on a “10-year deal … to supply 60 million doses a year of cut-price pneumococcal vaccines to developing nations,” Reuters reports. The agreement is under what’s “called an Advance Market Commitment (AMC) which guarantees a market for vaccines supplied to poor nations but sets a maximum price drugmakers can expect to receive,” the news service writes (Kelland, 3/23).

WHO H1N1 Vaccine Shipments Headed To More Developing Countries

The WHO on Friday announced “it had delivered the first doses of H1N1 [swine flu] vaccine to Cuba, and a dozen countries in Africa would receive millions of doses in coming weeks,” Reuters reports. According to WHO spokeswoman Karen Mah, Cuba received an estimated 1.1 million doses Wednesday, and Honduras and El Salvador shipments are “en route,” according to the news service.

Opinions: Discrimination Against Sexual Orientation; WFP In Somalia; Haiti’s Recovery; WHO’s Policy Role

Discrimination Against Sexual Orientation Are ‘Backward Steps’ For Human Rights In Africa In a Washington Post opinion piece, Desmond Tutu, archbishop emeritus of Cape Town, South Africa, and Nobel Peace Prize recipient, speaks out against efforts to deny individuals “their fundamental rights and freedoms” based on their sexual orientation. Tutu cites cases in…