The international drug procurement agency UNITAID on Monday unveiled plans to create a patent pool for HIV/AIDS medications to help increase access to generic versions of newer drugs at lower prices for low- and middle-income countries, Agence France-Presse reports. The patent pool “will create a common space for patent holders to license their technology in exchange for royalties” and is “scheduled to begin operating in mid-2010,” AFP reports (12/14).
Programs, Funding & Financing
WHO’s World Malaria Report 2009, released on Tuesday, found “increased funding is starting to pay off in the battle against malaria but prevention and treatment must be increased to try to halt the killer disease, Reuters reports. According to the Associated Press, there were more than 240 million cases of malaria and an estimated 863,000 people, mostly in Africa, died of the disease in 2008.
Washington Post Editorial Examines Future Of PEPFAR A Washington Post editorial examines the future of PEPFAR under the Obama administration, as outlined in a five-year strategy released earlier this month. Though “[m]any organizations, including Doctors Without Borders, continue to worry that Mr. Obama is ‘flat-lining’ funding for the vital program,”…
After the Senate approved a House-passed spending package worth almost $450 billion on Sunday, the legislation, which “includes annual foreign aid packages,” will go to President Barack Obama, Agence France-Presse reports. Obama is expected to sign the legislation (12/13).
McClatchy published a three-part series examining the “population boom” in Africa. Summaries appear below. One article looks at the relationship between Africa’s rising population and poverty. “Although it’s frequently portrayed as a continent decimated by epidemics, starvation and war, Africa is gripped by one of the greatest population explosions ever…
Lancet Comment Examines Connection Between Climate Change, Health A Lancet Comment examines the connection between climate change and human health and highlights the role health professionals can play in dealing with the future effects of climate change. “The only heartening aspect of this bleak terrain is the gathering awareness that…
The House on Thursday “took a major step toward wrapping up the FY10 appropriations process when it approved, 221-202, a nearly $450 billion spending package that includes six of the seven annual appropriations bills Congress has yet to enact,” CongressDaily reports. The package includes the $48.7 billion State and Foreign Operations bill. “All Republicans, as well as 28 Democrats, opposed the bill,” according to CongressDaily (Sanchez, 12/10).
The Financial Times’ Andrew Jack analyzes the debate over different approaches to family planning worldwide. According to Jack, there is a “growing worry that some developing countries have failed to follow the broader ‘demographic transition’ to lower fertility levels that has occurred in past decades in the western world and more recently across Latin America and much of Asia. …”
The fiscal year 2010 State and Foreign Operations Appropriations bill, which includes funding for global health-related measures, “is moving on the Hill as part of a mammoth catch-all spending bill that’s expected to move through both chambers this month,” Foreign Policy’s blog, “The Cable,” reports.
“Tobacco use kills at least 5 million people every year, a figure that could rise if countries don’t take stronger measures to combat smoking, the World Health Organization said Wednesday,” during the release its Global Tobacco Epidemic report (.pdf), the Associated Press reports (Cheng, 12/9).