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Sierra Leone Charges 29 Government Health Officials With Defrauding GAVI Alliance

“The head of Sierra Leone’s Anti-Corruption Commission says that 29 government health officials will appear in court on corruption charges for having allegedly defrauded” the GAVI Alliance, the Associated Press reports. “Joseph Fitzgerald Kamara told the Associated Press that the government’s Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Kisito Sheku Daoh, six other medical doctors…

India Needs Political Leadership, Resources To Ensure Children’s Right To Health

“India is making positive strides in reducing child mortality through new policies and ambitious programs, but preventing the deaths of millions of children remains one of the country’s greatest challenges,” health expert and blogger John Butler writes in the Wall Street Journals “India Real Time” blog, noting, “Roughly 1.7 million…

Community-Led Engagement, Greater Access Needed To End Polio

“While the challenges we face in the last polio reservoirs are difficult, they are not intractable,” Bekele Geleta, secretary general of the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, writes in an AlertNet opinion piece. “To end polio forever, we must answer a critical question: what is the…

Measles Epidemic Affecting Tens Of Thousands Of Children In DRC, MSF Warns

“A measles epidemic has affected tens of thousands of children in northern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), overwhelming health facilities, says medical charity Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF),” IRIN reports. “‘Most health centers are either not functional, out of medical stocks or inaccessible for the majority of the population. Many children die in…

Police Escort Of Polio Workers Killed In Northern Pakistan

“Health workers administering polio vaccinations to children came under attack in northern Pakistan on Tuesday, killing their police escort, authorities said,” CNN reports. “Two women administering the shots entered a house on the outskirts of Mardan when two assailants on a motorbike opened fire on them, according to Danishwar Khan, a local…

Rwanda To Roll Out Combined Measles-Rubella Vaccination Campaign

“Rwanda has been so successful at fighting measles that next month it will be the first country to get donor support to move to the next stage — fighting rubella too,” the New York Times reports. “On March 11, it will hold a nationwide three-day vaccination campaign with a combined measles-rubella vaccine,…

Twenty Doctors Suspected Of Embezzling Funds From GAVI Arrested In Niger

“Niger arrested about 20 doctors suspected of embezzling funds from a charity promoting vaccination in poor countries, … judicial and police sources said on Monday,” Reuters reports. “The new investigation centers on some $1.5 million donated between 2007 and 2010 by the GAVI Alliance, backed by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation,…

New Leprosy Test, Experimental Vaccine Might Hasten Disease Elimination, Slate Reports

Slate examines a new rapid diagnostic test and an experimental vaccine for leprosy, both developed by the Infectious Disease Research Institute in Seattle, writing, “The two tools together could finally free humans from the vicious cycle of a disease that has afflicted the population for at least 4,000 years.” According to Slate, “The…

Oral Polio Vaccine Cold Chain Disruption In Pakistan Could Compromise Immunization Effectiveness, Health Officials Warn

Health officials in Pakistan “have formally complained to the WHO concerning the quality of [oral polio vaccine (OPV)] doses distributed by the U.N. body,” SciDev.Net reports, noting 58 children became infected with polio in 2012 despite having received the vaccine. Abdul Wakeel, assistant director of the government’s immunization program in the Khyber…

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