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White House Marks World AIDS Day

Commemorating World AIDS Day on Wednesday President Barack Obama called for continuing to fight HIV/AIDS domestically and abroad, Agence France-Presse reports (12/1).

U.N. Says PMTCT Of HIV Is Achievable, Efforts Must Target Millions Currently ‘Falling Through The Cracks’

“A generation of babies could be born free of AIDS if the international community stepped up efforts to provide universal access to HIV prevention, treatment and social protection, the United Nations said on Tuesday,” Reuters reports. The declaration came on the eve of World AIDS Day, as U.N. leaders released a new report (.pdf), which found “millions of women and children, particularly in poor countries, fall through the cracks of HIV services either due to their gender, social or economic status, location or education,” according to the news service (Kelland, 11/30).

U.N. Launches Largest Ever Annual Aid Appeal, Asking For $7.4B In 2011

In its annual appeal, the U.N. on Tuesday asked “governments and private donors for a record $7.4 billion next year to provide 50 million people worldwide with food, clothing and other urgent humanitarian aid,” the Associated Press/Washington Post reports (11/30).

To Reduce Spread Of HIV/AIDS, IFRC Calls For More Focus On IDU Programs

Ahead of World AIDS Day, the International Federation of the Red Cross on Friday released a report (.pdf) calling for governments around the world to do more to help stop the spread of HIV/AIDS among populations of injecting drug users (IDUs), the Associated Press reports (Heilprin, 11/25).

GAVI Says Pentavalent Vaccine Price To Fall, But $3.7B Still Needed To Vaccinate Children In Developing Countries

The average price of a vaccine that protects children against five diseases is expected to “drop to $2.58 next year compared to the current average price of $2.97,” the GAVI Alliance said Friday, Reuters reports. The group credits the expected price decline, which “represents a decrease of 30 percent over the last seven years,” in part to an “increased demand for the pentavalent, or five-in-one vaccine,” according to the news service (Kelland, 11/26).

Haiti Requires Additional Trained Nurses, Doctors To Address Cholera Epidemic, U.N. Official Says

Haiti needs about 1,000 additional trained nurses and at least 100 more physicians to control the cholera epidemic, Valerie Amos, the U.N. undersecretary-general for humanitarian affairs, said during a recent visit to the capital of Port-au-Prince, Reuters reports. “We clearly need to do more,” Amos said of the global response to the cholera outbreak. “But it’s not just money, it’s crucially people, in terms of getting more doctors, nurses, more people who can help with the awareness-raising and getting information out there,” she said. The U.N. plans to work with countries and aid groups that have the capacity to quickly provide more health workers, according to Amos.

WHO/UN-HABITAT Report Documents Health Disparities Facing Women In Developing Country Urban Areas

Womens News Network/Guardian Development Network examines a WHO/United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-HABITAT) report released last week that highlighted the health disparities affecting populations living in urban areas. The article focuses on the impact of urban poverty on women’s health, noting: “Women suffering under poverty are especially sensitive to impacts of urbanisation as statistics show women in densely populated areas have a 1.5 times higher rate of HIV/AIDS than men. Women in cities also face higher dangers of contracting AIDS, a figure almost twice as high as their rural sisters” (11/23).

Also In Global Health News: Access To ARVs In Mozambique; HIV/AIDS In Bolivia; Sierra Leone’s Food Security Plan

NewsHour Looks At ARV Programs In Mozambique PBS NewsHour examines “how policy decisions made in Washington affect people in the Southern African nation of Mozambique,” where one in eight adults is HIV-positive. With antiretroviral drugs (ARVs) paid for by the U.S. keeping millions across Africa alive, NewsHour looks at the debate that “has emerged:…