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GAVI Chair Calls For Greater Reductions In Vaccine Prices For Developing Countries

On Monday, the same day the GAVI Alliance helped oversee the roll out of a routine pneumococcal vaccine in Kenya, GAVI chairman Dagfinn Hoybraten highlighted the need for greater reductions in vaccine prices in developing countries during an interview with Reuters, the news service reports. The piece examines the funding mechanism in place to finance the pneumococcal vaccines, known as Advance Market Commitment (AMC), as well as the budget shortfall facing the group (Kelland, 2/14).

Pneumococcal Vaccine Officially Rolled Out In Kenya

“Kenya on Monday became the first African country to introduce a routine vaccine against pneumococcal disease, which claims the lives of more than half a million children under five each year,” Deutsche Presse Agentur/The Hindu reports. The GAVI Alliance, which is supporting the vaccine’s roll out, “is aiming to introduce the vaccine to 19 developing countries – including Nicaragua, Guyana, Yemen and Sierra Leone – within a year and hopes to reach more than 40 nations by 2015, depending on funding.”

Also In Global Health News: Global Alcohol-Related Deaths; Pentavalent Vaccine Plant To Resume Operations; Harm-Reduction In Russia; IDUs In Tanzania; MDG Tracking Program In Kenya

Alcohol Kills 2.5M Annually, WHO Report Says “Alcohol abuse is killing 2.5 million people each year,” according to a report from the WHO, which said that about “4 percent of all deaths worldwide are attributable to alcohol,” the Associated Press/Washington Post reports. “The main causes of alcohol-related deaths are injuries incurred…

Opinions: U.S. Foreign Aid; Polio Eradication

Foreign Aid, Antipoverty Advocates, Others Must Back Deficit Commission Report Efforts To Restore Budget Choices “Over the past few weeks, I’ve had a chance to interview some amazing people,” ranging from Bill Gates to scientists and teachers, who are all concerned about impending budget cuts, the New York Times’ David Brooks…

Times Of India Examines Dengue Vaccine Trials

India could soon become a site for clinical trials to evaluate the effectiveness of a dengue vaccine, the Times of India reports. According to the drug controller general of India (DCGI), vaccine maker Sanofi Pasteur recently submitted a proposal to test the vaccine to the country. If approved, India would be the latest country to join in studies of the vaccine’s effectiveness in adults and children, which are already taking place in Australia, Colombia, Honduras, Mexico, Peru, Philippines, Puerto Rico, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam, according to the newspaper.

HIV-Negative Babies Born To HIV-Positive Mothers Have Lower Antibody Levels For Some Infections, Study Finds

“Babies who are exposed to HIV at birth but don’t become infected with the virus have lower levels of antibodies to diseases such as whooping cough, tetanus and pneumococcus,” according to a study published in the Feb. 9 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), HealthDay News/U.S. News & World Report (2/8). The findings “might explain in part why uninfected babies born to women with HIV have a higher risk of illness and death early in life,” according to a press release by the Imperial College of London, whose researchers helped lead the study.

Also In Global Health News: Uganda’s Crop Production; Boosting Immune System To Fight HIV/AIDS; Polio In Angola; Maternal Health In India; HIV/AIDS In Kenya; Drought, Food Shortages In Kenya, Somalia; NGOs In Haiti

Uganda Launches Program To Attract Farmers To Produce Staple Food Crops Uganda recently launched a program aimed at attracting farmers in the country to produce staple food crops, the East African reports. The strategy, contained in the National Agricultural Advisory Services (NAADS) Implementation Guidelines, will offer “[e]ach farming household ……

Also In Global Health News: Malnutrition In Somalia; Sierra Leone’s Health System; HIV/AIDS Drugs In Ukraine; Global Health Aid; AIDS Vaccine; HIV/AIDS In Kenya

Guardian Looks At Malnutrition Following Drought In Somalia “Severe drought in Somalia has left nearly one in three children acutely malnourished in some areas – double the normal emergency threshold – and caused a sharp rise in food prices,” the Guardian writes in a story examining hunger in the country.…