KFF Daily Global Health Policy Report

In The News

NPR Looks At 11 Global Health, Development Trends For 2020

NPR: Grim And Hopeful Global Trends To Watch In 2020 (And Fold Into A Zine)
“We don’t have a crystal ball, but as journalists covering global health and development, we have a pretty good nose for emerging trends (with some help from our favorite expert sources). Some likely trends give cause for optimism — signs of progress in solving the world’s problems. Other trends are pessimistic — threats and challenges that are expected to worsen in the year ahead. Here are 11 trend lines we’ll be watching in 2020..” (Multiple authors, 1/2).

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Nutrition Advocates Highlight 2020 As Key Year For Remaining Work To Reach World Health Assembly, 2030 Goals

Devex: 2020 must be year of action on nutrition, advocates say
“The year 2019 saw the release of several major data-driven reports demonstrating the uphill climb to meet key international nutrition goals. … With five years left to meet the World Health Assembly goals and 10 to meet the Sustainable Development Goals, nutrition advocates say 2020 is a key year for the work remaining to eliminate hunger and ensure a diverse, nutritious, and sustainable diet for the nearly 8 billion people on the rapidly warming planet…” (Welsh, 1/2).

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Africa Facing Extremism, Hunger, Ebola At Beginning Of 2020

Associated Press: Africa starts 2020 battling extremism, Ebola and hunger
“A tragic airline crash with far-reaching consequences, cataclysmic cyclones that may be a harbinger of the future, the death of an African icon, and a new leader who won the Nobel Peace Prize. These African stories captured the world’s attention in 2019 — and look to influence events on the continent in 2020. The battles against extremist violence and Ebola will also continue to be major campaigns in Africa in the coming year…” (Meldrum, 1/1).

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Chinese Authorities Continue Work To Identify Cause Of Pneumonia Outbreak In Wuhan

BloombergQuint: China Pneumonia Outbreak Widens to 59 Amid Hunt for Source
“A pneumonia outbreak in China that’s infected 15 more people doesn’t appear to be spreading from human to human, officials said, after ruling out SARS as a potential cause of the mysterious disease. As of Sunday morning, 59 people had been diagnosed with pneumonia, the cause of which is unknown, the Wuhan Municipal Health Commission said in a statement late Sunday. That’s up from 44 on Friday…” (Gale, 1/6).

Reuters: Chinese authorities say viral pneumonia outbreak is not SARS, MERS or bird flu
“Chinese healthcare authorities in Wuhan said an outbreak of viral pneumonia was not Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS), Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS), or bird flu, and that they were still working to identify the cause and source…” (Li/Woo, 1/5).

STAT: Experts search for answers in limited information about mystery pneumonia outbreak in China
“…The infections are linked to a large seafood market where it is believed some exotic animals were also sold for consumption. The World Health Organization has said little about the outbreak beyond that it is in close contact with China authorities on the issue…” (Branswell, 1/4).

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WSJ Examines Antibiotics Market, Companies' Struggles To Profit From New Drugs

Wall Street Journal: Antibiotic Makers Struggle, Hurting War on Superbugs
“The world desperately needs new antibiotics to tackle the rising threat of drug-resistant superbugs, but there is little reward for doing so. Instead, the companies that have stepped up to the challenge are going bust. Makers of newly approved antibiotic drugs are struggling to generate sales because doctors prescribe the treatments sparingly. The new drugs compete with older, cheaper products, and patients typically take them for only a week or two at a time…” (Roland, 1/5).

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More News In Global Health

ABC: Pacific nations Vanuatu and PNG pledge aid for Australia’s bushfires (Ewart/Handley, 1/6).

AP: Indonesia’s flooded capital disinfected to fend off disease (Karmini, 1/5).

Borgen Magazine: Vietnamese Agent Orange Victims (Stephens, 1/6).

Christian Science Monitor: Congo Ebola crisis: To fight disease, an anthropologist heals distrust (Brown, 1/3).

Dawn: Polio cases for 2019 still surfacing, tally rises to 128 (Junaidi, 1/5).

Devex: Results in rural India offer window into what works to fight blindness (Lieberman, 1/6).

Devex: INGOs can help dismantle development’s ‘white gaze,’ PopWorks Africa founder says (Cheney, 1/6).

Devex: South Sudan government strategizes to stave off potential famine (Ravelo, 1/3).

Healio: WHO schistosomiasis control, elimination targets reached sooner than expected (Stulpin, 1/3).

IPS: Child Marriages Unlikely to End by U.N.’s 2030 Deadline (Nusrat, 1/3).

Nature/Scientific American: What CRISPR-Baby Prison Sentences Mean for Research (Cyranoski, 1/6).

The Telegraph: How food insecurity threatens Malawi’s HIV progress (Mhango, 1/3).

Xinhua: Zambia, Austria seal deal to reduce infant and maternal mortality (1/5).

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Editorials and Opinions

Systemic Change, Committed Leadership Needed To Achieve SDGs, Development Experts Write In Opinion Piece

Devex: Opinion: It always seems impossible until it’s done
Simone Filippini, president of Leadership4SDGs, and Helen Clark, former prime minister of New Zealand, former UNDP administrator, and former chair of the U.N. Development Group

“In April 2019, Jean-Paul Moatti, a member of the United Nations expert group evaluating progress on the Sustainable Development Goals, reported that progress on most SDGs has gone into reverse. U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres has also rung the alarm bell, underlining that ‘It is abundantly clear that a much deeper, faster, and more ambitious response is needed to unleash the social and economic transformation needed to achieve our 2030 goals.’ … [W]hy is there insufficient progress on these crucial agendas? And what can be done? In-depth transformation to achieve the SDGs requires systemic change. And systemic change requires leadership committed to that. … Improved governance and upskilled ministerial leadership is needed to drive policy change and implementation. If such support to empower and capacitate governments could be offered in a structured and systematic way, … the SDGs would stand a better chance of being achieved. Put simply, the 2030 Agenda is too important to fail. Business as usual is not an option; it guarantees failure. … If the world is to stand a chance of achieving the SDGs, new approaches are needed — and needed quickly. There’s no time to lose” (1/3).

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Global Development Organizations Face Internal, Other Challenges In 2020, Devex Editor In Chief Writes In Opinion Piece

Devex: What to watch for in 2020
Raj Kumar, founding president and editor-in-chief at Devex

“As development professionals and aid workers return to their offices, project sites, and refugee camps to start a new year, the external environment remains daunting. … But these and other worrying trends go back some time. What’s more recent is our increasingly challenging internal environment. … For global development professionals, it’s what’s happening to our own institutions and funding sources that is likely to dominate conversation this year. They may not be on official conference agendas, but aid industry dysfunction and tumult will be the subtext of every panel and the topic of every heated discussion wherever aid workers gather. Here’s some of what to watch for. Aid politics … Aid funding … The humanitarian system … Cold War with China … Billionaire philanthropy … A pivotal year … Global development professionals will be watching these issues no doubt. But with so much at stake for development institutions and funding, it’s the internal questions that are most likely to dominate our conversation. This is a year with a lot on the line” (1/2).

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New, Innovative Approaches Vital To Addressing Humanitarian Crises In 2020, Opinion Piece Says

The Hill: Armed conflict will fuel humanitarian crises in 2020
Daniel Speckhard, president and CEO of Lutheran World Relief and IMA World Health

“The humanitarian outlook for 2020 and beyond forecasts a situation that is both complex and insecure, even as global development gains bring millions out of extreme poverty. … Increasingly, the common underlying denominator is violent conflict. And the nature of the modern conflict is becoming more complex. … These complex humanitarian emergencies include war-torn Yemen; the Democratic Republic of Congo, where militia violence is hindering the response to end the Ebola outbreak; several perils facing Central America; extremist attacks in West Africa’s Sahel; violent protests in Iraq; South Sudan, recovering from years of civil war; and the continuing crisis in Venezuela. These scenarios present a host of challenges for nongovernmental relief and development organizations working to eliminate poverty and ease human suffering. We will need to employ new, imaginative, and innovative approaches if we hope to make an impact. … [W]e will have to employ development approaches and longer-lasting solutions that include new partners, including the private sector. And it will be vital to recognize the primacy of local partners who best know the social and political context of their communities” (1/3).

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From the Global Health Policy Community

'Science Speaks' Reflects On Global Health Advances Over Past Decade

IDSA’s “Science Speaks”: In a decade of global health advances, Science Speaks coverage finds movement toward equity
Antigone Barton, senior editor and writer at “Science Speaks,” reflects on global health advances and obstacles since the blog’s launch in 2009, including the global HIV/AIDS and TB responses, Ebola vaccine and treatment research, changes in U.S. international family planning policy, and efforts to address global health security. Barton writes, “We’ve seen much to be discouraged by, as well as much to be inspired by in 2019. But the years since 2009 … have also showed us that while the arcs of science and social justice are long and far from straight, they bend, unyielding, toward global health equity” (12/23).

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