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Kaiser Daily Global Health Policy Report

In The News

Devex Highlights U.S. Aid Policy Legislation To Watch In 2018

Devex: U.S. aid policy to watch in 2018
“While 2016 was a big year for United States development legislation, last year was markedly quieter, dominated instead by budget debates and efforts to ensure aid funding. While development dollars will once again top the agenda in Congress, there are several other pieces of key legislation. Those bills could help shape U.S. policy on everything from multilateral aid, to development finance, food security, and internet access…” (Saldinger, 1/12).

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U.S. Ambassador To India Outlines How Nations Working Together To Address TB, Dengue, Global Health Security

Press Trust of India: India, U.S. working together to fight TB, dengue: U.S. envoy
“India and the United States are working together to develop vaccines against diseases such as tuberculosis and dengue, Washington’s envoy to New Delhi Kenneth Juster said [Thursday], describing issues related to health as an ‘important shared’ responsibility. In his first policy speech after taking over as the ambassador to India, Juster said the two nations were also engaged in the ‘Global Health Security Agenda,’ which included acting to combat antimicrobial resistance and strengthening the detection and prevention of epidemics…” (1/11).

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Few Polio Cases Reported In Pakistan But Virus Persists In Sewage

Science: ‘What the hell is going on?’ Polio cases are vanishing in Pakistan, yet the virus won’t go away
“Just a year ago, poliovirus seemed on its last legs in Pakistan, one of its final strongholds. Polio cases were steadily falling, from 306 in 2014 to 54 in 2015, 20 in 2016, and, by last count, eight in 2017. … Unsettling new findings, however, show it is far from gone. In the most extensive effort in any country to scour the environment for traces of the virus, polio workers are finding it widely across Pakistan, in places they thought it had disappeared…” (Roberts, 1/11).

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U.N. Emergency Relief Coordinator Outlines Ways To Improve Humanitarian Aid In War-Torn Syria

U.N. News Centre: In Damascus, U.N. aid chief outlines measures to improve response to Syrian crisis in 2018
“After seven years of bloody conflict, the Syrian war has wreaked a ‘colossal toll’ on the country and its people, the United Nations relief chief said on Thursday from the capital, Damascus, where he outlined ways to sustain and improve humanitarian assistance and protection for everyone affected by the crisis this year…” (1/11).

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More News In Global Health

BBC News: Menstruating girls banned from crossing Ghana river (1/11).

Devex: DRC cholera outbreak hampers humanitarian efforts, worries neighbors (Roby, 1/12).

The Guardian: ‘A great milestone’: Somaliland adopts legislation outlawing rape (Bowman, 1/11).

The Lancet: Natalia Kanem: lifelong advocate for women’s health and rights (Zarocostas, 1/13).

New York Times: A Blue Sky in Beijing? It’s Not a Fluke, Says Greenpeace (Myers/Ryan, 1/11).

News Deeply Women and Girls: How Mongolia Revolutionized Reproductive Health for Nomadic Women (Tali, 1/11).

Reuters: Zambian army enters slum after riots over cholera controls: state radio (Mfula, 1/12).

STAT: Genome sequencing turns up new drivers of drug resistance in malaria (Thielking, 1/11).

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Editorials and Opinions

Economic Sanctions Hurt Public Health, Should Be Implemented Sparingly

The Lancet: Sanctioning the most vulnerable — a failed foreign policy
Editorial Board

“Over past months, U.S.-led threats of, or implementation of, economic sanctions have multiplied. … Economic sanctions can have a devastating impact on public health. Leveraging the economic stability of a country will hurt the most vulnerable in the population first—for instance, by limiting access to affordable food or hindering humanitarian aid. … The U.N. Security Council should carry out comprehensive assessments of the humanitarian cost of economic sanctions on a case-by-case basis before applying them, and, above all, always prioritize people’s health and welfare, or risk threatening the lives of millions on the brink of preventable death” (1/13).

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Bangladesh Using Expertise In Cholera Treatment, Prevention To Assist Other Nations Experiencing Outbreaks

Project Syndicate: A Bangladeshi Prescription for Cholera
Azharul Islam Khan, chief physician and head of hospitals at the International Centre of Diarrhoeal Disease Research, Bangladesh (icddr,b)

“…[C]holera continues to flare up during times of crisis, killing the most vulnerable among us. … As a founding member of the WHO’s Global Outbreak Alert and Response Network (GOARN), icddr,b has deployed expert teams to Zimbabwe, Sudan, South Sudan, Mozambique, Syria, Somalia, Haiti, Sierra Leone, Ethiopia, and Iraq. By sharing the knowledge and expertise that we have developed over decades of diarrheal disease management and research, we are playing a leading role in global efforts to tackle outbreaks. … [T]ime and again, researchers and health workers in Bangladesh have demonstrated their expertise at containing cholera outbreaks and saving lives. As the world looks for new ways to curb opportunistic epidemics, it must not overlook the science that developing countries already possess. Cholera is back in the Global South. But, as our work in Bangladesh demonstrates, the Global South has the skills to beat it” (1/11).

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Newly Prequalified Typhoid Vaccine Has Potential To Protect Millions Of Children, Reduce Mortality

The Lancet: A new vaccine for typhoid control
Editorial Board

“Last week, WHO announced prequalification of the first conjugate vaccine to prevent typhoid (Typbar TCV, manufactured by Bharat Biotech, India) after the publication of randomized controlled trials, including that by Celina Jin and colleagues in The Lancet on Sept 28, 2017. … There are an estimated 12·5–20·6 million cases of typhoid worldwide each year, with a mortality rate of one per 100 cases. … Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, has confirmed allocation of US$85 million of funding to roll out the vaccine in south Asia, sub-Saharan Africa, and beyond between 2019 and 2020. Priced by Bharat Biotech at US$1-1·50 per dose, Typbar TCV will potentially protect millions of children and greatly reduce mortality from typhoid…” (1/13).

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From the Global Health Policy Community

Report Examines Roles Of, Competencies For Global Health Diplomats

BMC Globalization and Health: Applied global health diplomacy: profile of health diplomats accredited to the UNITED STATES and foreign governments
Matthew D. Brown of the Center for Global Health at the NIH’s National Cancer Institute and colleagues interviewed seven health attachés to explore “four key topics: the role and mission of Health Attachés, skills needed to perform [global health diplomacy], examples of successes and challenges in accomplishing their respective missions, and suggestions for the future development of the diplomatic profession.” They conclude, “Our findings indicate that skills in diplomacy and negotiation, applied science, and cross cultural competency are essential for the statecraft of Health Attachés. Additionally, establishing a clear career pathway for Health Attachés is critical for future maturation of the profession and for fostering effective global health action that aligns public health and foreign diplomacy outcomes” (1/11).

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Study Examines Global Health Labor Market's Future Needs, Presents Framework For Improving Health Work Policy

BMC Human Resources for Health: Forecasting imbalances in the global health labor market and devising policy responses
Richard M. Scheffler of the School of Public Health and Goldman School of Public Policy at the University of California, Berkeley and colleagues examine two recent reports on the global health labor market, one by the World Health Organization (WHO), which used a needs-based approach, and another by the World Bank, which used a labor market approach. The authors note, “These two very different approaches produce findings that have important policy implications when the results are viewed together. This paper summarizes the two approaches and the results they produce. … The results are a background for high-level policy suggestions. These broad policies would need to be refined at the country level. The results in the paper and policy suggestions provide a framework for improving health work policy around the globe” (1/11).

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CGD Podcast Discusses Importance Of Family Planning, Showing Aid Successes With DFID Chief Economist

Center for Global Development’s “CGD Podcast”: Invest in Girls’ Futures — Podcast with DFID Chief Economist Rachel Glennerster
In this podcast, Rajesh Mirchandani, vice president of communications and policy outreach at CGD, speaks with Rachel Glennerster, the U.K. Department for International Development’s new chief economist. “One of the ways that aid is working, she says, is by helping girls stay in school — and family planning plays a key role in that,” Mirchandani writes (1/11).

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Blog Post Examines Data Showing Less Than Half Of Young Women With HIV Surveyed In 7 African Nations Aware Of Their Infection

IDSA’s “Science Speaks”: Survey across seven African countries finds young women and teenage girls less than halfway to 2020 goals for HIV control
Antigone Barton, senior editor and writer of “Science Speaks,” discusses findings from the Population-based HIV Impact Assessment, or PHIA surveys, funded by PEPFAR and conducted by ICAP at Columbia University with the support of local health ministries, which show less than half of young women and teenage girls with HIV surveyed in Lesotho, Malawi, Swaziland, Uganda, Tanzania, Zambia, and Zimbabwe knew they were living with HIV. Barton writes, “That’s far short of the 2020 goal of 90 percent of people living with HIV being aware of their infection that UNAIDS has projected will be necessary achieve to gain control of the pandemic” (1/11).

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Saving Lives At Birth Announces Round 8 Of Grand Challenge For Maternal, Infant Health

Saving Lives at Birth: A Grand Challenge for Development Announces Round 8 Call for Innovative Solutions to Prevent Infant & Maternal Deaths
“Saving Lives at Birth: A Grand Challenge for Development has launched its eighth call for groundbreaking, sustainable innovations to save the lives of mothers and newborns in the hardest to reach corners of the world. In Round 8, Saving Lives at Birth seeks to catalyze scale and sustainability of the most promising solutions that bring together cutting-edge science and/or low-cost technologies, service delivery, and demand innovation in transformative new ways. … Saving Lives at Birth: A Grand Challenge for Development partnership, launched in 2011, includes the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), the Government of Norway (NORAD), the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Grand Challenges Canada (funded by the Government of Canada), the U.K’s Department for International Development (DFID), and the Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA). Since 2011, the program has invested in over 100 innovations … Several of these groundbreaking solutions are already being scaled-up around the world…” (1/10).

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