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Also In Global Health News: Childhood Vaccines; USAID Administrator; Pakistan Polio Fight; UNICEF Fundraising; Measles In India

The International Examines Contributing Factors To Uneven Distribution Of Childhood Vaccines As a follow-up to the release of the State of the World’s Vaccines and Immunization by the WHO, UNICEF and World Bank last month, The International examines the findings that “despite child vaccinations hitting a record-high with about 106 million…

Polio Eradication Efforts Threatened By Funding Shortfall, Vaccination Resistance In Some Countries, Experts Say

Marking the 10th anniversary since Europe was declared polio-free, the Independent Monitoring Board (IMB) of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative on Wednesday released a report (.pdf) saying there is “a unique window of opportunity to stamp out polio for good,” with the number of reported cases at historical lows, but a funding shortfall of about $1 million is threatening eradication progress, Reuters reports. Polio “remains endemic in three countries — Pakistan, Afghanistan and Nigeria — after India in January became the latest country to become polio-free,” the news agency notes. IMB Chair Liam Donaldson “said the global financial crisis coupled with growing needs for polio funding had led to a shortfall of $945 million out of a total 2012-13 eradication program budget of $2 billion” and that 33 countries would have to cancel their vaccination programs, leaving 94 million children unprotected, according to Reuters (Kelland, 6/20).

If Health Continues To Wane On G8 Agenda, A Serious Void Will Be Left

In this post in the Global Health Governance blog, Jenilee Guebert, director of research for the global health diplomacy program and G8 research group at the University of Toronto’s Munk School of Global Affairs, writes that, “for the second year in a row, the amount of attention devoted to global health” at the annual G8 summit, which took place at Camp David in Maryland in May, has declined. “Global health was not completely absent from the summit,” she continues, highlighting several health initiatives discussed at the meeting, including the New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition, launched “to accelerate the flow of private capital to African agriculture” with an aim of “lift[ing] 50 million people out of poverty over the next decade.”

East Africa Declared Polio-Free Again After Outbreak

“Eastern Africa is free of polio again, with four countries – Ethiopia , Kenya, Sudan and Uganda – having reported no cases of the crippling disease for more than a year, U.N. and other aid agencies said on Friday,” Reuters reports (7/30). The WHO “said the region had responded fast to the outbreak,” according to the Daily Monitor. The article reports that the four countries now “join neighbouring Somalia which has been polio free for the last three years” (Lirri, 8/2).

Also In Global Health News: Active TB Genetic Marker Found; African Bishops Fight HIV; Polio Eradication; PEPFAR In Dominican Republic

Active TB “Genetic Signature” Found Researchers have identified a “genetic signature” in the blood of active tuberculosis patients in the U.K. and South Africa that could one day lead to a test to predict who among latent carriers might develop the disease, according to a study published Wednesday in the journal Nature, Reuters reports…

Also In Global Health News: Kenya Approves Constitution; Angola Vaccinates Against Polio; Misoprostol In Kenya; Preventing HIV In IDUs

Kenya Approves Constitution In Peaceful Election “Kenyans voted in favour of a new constitution in a peaceful referendum that could reshape the political landscape of east Africa’s largest economy, partial results showed on Thursday,” Reuters writes. The new constitution “addresses the corruption, political patronage, land-grabbing and tribalism which have plagued…

Boston Globe Examines Rise Of Polio In Tajikistan, Other Pockets Of World

“Polio has reappeared in a corner of the world that had not seen cases in years – Tajikistan, the former Soviet republic – a chilling setback in the two-decade campaign to purge a dreaded cause of childhood paralysis from the planet,” the Boston Globe reports in a story that examines the reemergence of polio in other areas of the world.

Also In Global Health News: China Smoking Ban; Gates Foundation Grants; Global Consumer Taxes; Polio Vaccination In Uzbekistan; Maternal Mortality In Uganda

China Vows To Ban Smoking From Public Places By 2011 “China, the world’s biggest consumer of tobacco, has insisted it will honour a pledge to ban smoking in public places by 2011 in accordance with an international treaty, state media said Tuesday,” Agence France-Presse reports. “Senior ministry official Yang Qing…

Opinions: Abortion In Canada’s G8 Initiative; Security Of Afghan Women; U.S. Global Development Strategy; Mother’s Day; U.S. Food Security Initiative; Polio Eradication

Abortions Are ‘One Small Chunk Of Bigger Puzzle’ For Improving Maternal, Child Health National Post columnist Jonathan Kay examines the ongoing debate over whether Canada’s G8 child and maternal health initiative should include abortions, which according to a 2006 Oxford University Press-World Bank report, are “one small chunk of a…