KFF Daily Global Health Policy Report

In The News

No New Ebola Cases Detected In DRC Surveillance; Countdown To End Of Outbreak Begins

Associated Press: Congo says countdown toward end of Ebola outbreak begins
“Congo’s health ministry says the countdown toward the end of its latest Ebola outbreak has begun, as all people who were in contact with the last confirmed case have passed the 21-day incubation period with no sign of the virus…” (6/28).

New York Times: Ebola Outbreak in Central Africa Is ‘Largely Contained’
“…The outbreak was the first in which health authorities deployed a Merck vaccine field-tested in the waning days of the huge 2014 epidemic in West Africa…” (McNeil, 6/28).

Reuters: Congo completes surveillance of Ebola contacts, no new cases
“…If no further cases of the deadly disease are confirmed after one more three-week incubation period, Congo will be able to officially declare an end to the outbreak, which is believed to have killed 29 people since April…” (Mahamba/Ross, 6/28).

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UNICEF Spends Record Amount On Emergency Supplies In 2017

Xinhua News: 2017 record year for expenditure on emergency supplies for children: UNICEF
“The U.N.’s children agency reported Thursday that it spent over 500 million U.S. dollars to deliver emergency supplies to children in 2017, setting a record. The highest expenditure came as famine, droughts, conflict, and malnutrition threatened the survival of millions of children, especially in South Sudan, Yemen, Somalia, and north-east Nigeria, the agency UNICEF said…” (6/28).

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NCDs Hit Developing Nations Hardest; Governments Must Address Issue, Experts Say

Devex: Suffering in silence: The deadly economic burden of NCDs
“…Noncommunicable diseases, including diabetes, cancer, cardiovascular, and chronic respiratory diseases, account for 41 million deaths globally each year according to the World Health Organization. Developing countries such as South Sudan, with limited access to health care and scarce resources, are the hardest hit. Not only has South Sudan’s five-year civil war displaced millions and plunged parts of the country into famine, it’s also had a crippling effect on an already fragile health care system. … Global health experts say that the only way to start combating the issue of NCDs is to start recognizing that it’s an issue…” (Mednick, 6/26).

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Governments Must Invest More In Health, Education, Social Work To Prevent 'Global Care Crisis,' ILO Says

U.N. News: ‘Global care crisis’ set to affect 2.3 billion people warns U.N. labor agency
“A ‘global care crisis’ is looming which could affect 2.3 billion people by 2030, United Nations work experts warned on Thursday, highlighting the potential for greater inequality in a sector where women already perform ‘more than three-quarters’ of all unpaid work. In a call for sweeping policy changes regarding the care of children and the elderly, the report by the International Labour Organization (ILO) says that 269 million jobs could be created in the next 12 years, if member states doubled current investment in education, health, and social work…” (6/28).

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World Bank Pledges Up To $480M In Grants For Health, WASH, Social Support For Rohingya Refugees

Reuters: World Bank to provide up to $480 million to aid Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh
“The World Bank said on Thursday it would provide up to $480 million in grant-based support to Bangladesh to address the needs of Rohingya refugees including health, education, water, sanitation, and social protection. The World Bank’s board approved a $50 million grant to add to an existing health-sector support project in Bangladesh, the first in a series that could total $480 million…” (Lawder, 6/28).

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CNN Examines Former Kenyan Policy Of Incarcerating Treatment Non-Compliant TB Patients

CNN: Locked up for being sick: Kenyan prisoners recount their experience
“…Kenya’s Public Health Act previously allowed public health officers to take any action necessary, including the detainment or isolation of infectious patients in prison, to prevent the spread of disease and minimize risk to the general public. It was overturned in 2016, but not before dozens of patients were sent to jail. … Those choosing not to adhere to the regimen risked being incarcerated and having it forced upon them…” (Ligami, 6/28).

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New Survey Data Examine Children With Disabilities Caught In War-Torn Syria

Devex: As violence escalates in Syria, new data on disabled children caught in the crossfire
“Three hospitals near the Syrian rebel-held city of Daraa were put out of commission by airstrikes on Wednesday, just as new data about the number and living conditions of children with disabilities in Syria paints an already-stark picture. … On Thursday, Syria Relief released the results of a survey of 789 children with disabilities aged 5-17 currently living in four Syrian governances, offering a snapshot of a marginalized demographic on which there has historically been a dearth of research…” (Anders, 6/29).

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African Academy of Sciences Forms Partnership To Research New Drugs To Treat Endemic Diseases

Xinhua News: Pan African scientific body to finance research on new drugs
“The Nairobi-based African Academy of Sciences (AAS) will partner with foundations and academic institutions to finance research and development of new drugs aimed at tackling the continent’s high disease burden. AAS said in a statement issued on Thursday that a partnership with University of Cape Town Drug Discovery and Development Centre (H3D), Medicines for Malaria Venture (MMV), and Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will stimulate research on new drugs to treat diseases endemic in Africa…” (6/29).

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More News In Global Health

The Economist: Polio has been reported in Papua New Guinea (6/30).

The Economist: Making medical clothing that kills bugs (6/28).

The Economist: A big collaboration is trying to understand diseases of the psyche (6/28).

NPR: The ‘Rules Of War’ Are Being Broken. What Exactly Are They? (Lu, 6/28).

U.N. News: INTERVIEW: U.N.’s top official in North Korea foresees ‘surge’ in humanitarian aid (6/28).

Xinhua News: Rwanda intensifies efforts to fight malaria (6/29).

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Editorials and Opinions

Opinion Piece Outlines 4 Solutions To Improve Maternal, Child Survival, Including Passage Of Reach Act

Devex: Opinion: 4 sustainable solutions to save millions of mothers and children
Kris Perry, president of Save the Children Action Network, and Vanessa Kerry, CEO and co-founder of Seed Global Health

“…Despite success in reducing mortality rates, the world’s most vulnerable, hard-to-reach women and children continue to face great barriers to accessing basic health services. … Here are four solutions that would save millions of lives of vulnerable mothers and children around the world. 1. Partnerships between nations … 2. The Reach Every Mother and Child Act … 3. Commitment from USAID … 4. Innovative financing mechanisms … Investing in global health is in everyone’s interest. Beyond reducing morbidity and mortality, improvements in health will strengthen economic growth, development, and even security. Effective foreign assistance tools such as the novel development impact bonds and maternal and child health programs are an essential contribution to these goals. We urge Congress to continue the U.S.’s legacy of strong leadership in global health — with swift passage of the Reach Every Mother and Child Act to ensure continued emphasis on maternal and child survival — and to demonstrate the power of bipartisan understanding and support of smart foreign health aid” (6/28).

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Curbing Migration Requires Addressing Climate Change

New York Times: If You Really Want to Curb Migration, Get Serious About Climate Change
Lauren Markham, freelance reporter

“…Today, according to global relief agencies, over 68 million people worldwide have been forced to flee their homes, often because of war, poverty, and political persecution. … If you talk to these migrants long enough, you’ll hear about another, more subtle but still profound dimension to the problems they are leaving behind: environmental degradation or climate change. … The more out of whack our climate becomes, the more people up and leave their homes. As our world heats up and sea levels rise, the problem of forced migration around the world is projected to become far worse. And in refusing to take climate change or responsibility for our planet seriously, the Trump administration is encouraging the conditions that will increase unauthorized migrations to the United States and elsewhere…” (6/29).

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From the Global Health Policy Community

MFAN Delivers Statement On U.S. House, Senate Revisions, Passage Of BUILD Act

Modernizing Foreign Assistance Network: Key House and Senate Committees Positively Amend and Approve BUILD Act
In a statement delivered on behalf of MFAN, Co-chairs George Ingram, Tessie San Martin, and Connie Veillette discuss U.S. House and Senate committee amendments and approvals of the BUILD Act. The co-chairs write, “The Modernizing Foreign Assistance Network is encouraged by the revisions and passage in the Senate Foreign Relations Committee this week of the bipartisan Better Utilization of Investments Leading to Development Act of 2018, or BUILD Act (S. 2463). This follows approval of the BUILD Act in the House Foreign Affairs Committee last month (H.R. 5105). The BUILD Act would expand U.S. development finance capabilities by establishing a new Development Finance Corporation (DFC). The amended version of BUILD includes improvements that align with MFAN’s recommendations for the legislation…” (6/28).

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Researchers Discuss How Doctor Absenteeism May Play Role In Maternal Mortality In Uganda

BMJ Opinion: Maternal mortality in low-resource settings: are doctors part of the solution or the problem?
Louise Ackers, James Ackers-Johnson, and Robert Ssekitoleko, all based in the Knowledge, Health and Place Research Group at Salford University and all trustees of Knowledge For Change, examine the potential causes of high maternal mortality rates in Uganda, writing, “Our research suggests that the failure of doctors to present themselves for work is one of the primary causes of maternal mortality in Uganda. UKAid interventions should focus on providing support with and enforcement of effective human resource management and accountability systems as a non-negotiable conditionality principle. This can only be achieved through more genuinely democratic, multi-professional, and multi-disciplinary team-working” (6/28).

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PAHO/WHO Meetings Address Health Challenges In Americas Region

PAHO/WHO: PAHO Executive Committee concludes its 162nd session on advancing health in the Americas region
“The Executive Committee of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) concluded its 162nd session on 21 June, following discussions and deliberations on a variety of strategies, action plans, and policies to address a number of key health challenges in the region. Issues that were advanced during the Committee include: action plans to ensure the health of women, children, and adolescents; the prevention and treatment of cervical cancer; and the human resources required for universal health access and coverage…” (6/22).

PAHO/WHO: New strategy developed to improve vaccination coverage in large cities
“Experts and officials from eight Latin American countries have met in Buenos Aires to revise a new strategy to enable broader vaccination coverage in large cities. … During the meeting, participants shared lessons learned from other countries on improving vaccination levels among urban and suburban populations, as well as recommendations for the development of strategies to improve access to, and use of, vaccinations. Participants also identified effective strategies to improve vaccination levels in marginalized urban areas…” (6/27).

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New Treatment Strategy To Accelerate Elimination Of Lymphatic Filariasis Expected To Roll Out Later This Year

Task Force for Global Health: New Treatment Strategy May Accelerate Elimination of Lymphatic Filariasis
“A promising new treatment strategy to accelerate elimination of the disfiguring neglected tropical disease lymphatic filariasis (LF) is expected to roll out later this year in Kenya — and possibly, three other countries — due to the concerted efforts of the Task Force for Global Health and its partners. … Many countries hope to use the new treatment to ‘fast-track’ LF elimination…” (6/27).

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From the U.S. Government

USAID's June 2018 Global Health Newsletter Focuses On Maternal, Child Survival

USAID’s “Global Health News”: Maternal and Child Survival
USAID’s June 2018 newsletter focuses on maternal and child survival and includes articles discussing USAID’s 2018 Acting on the Call report; the agency’s efforts to prevent the spread of HIV from mother to child; and innovations supported by the Saving Lives at Birth partnership (June 2018).

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U.S. State Department's Trafficking In Persons Report Highlights Importance Of Local Communities In Prevention, Protection

U.S. Department of State’s “DipNote”: The Power of Local Communities in the Fight Against Human Trafficking
Kari Johnstone, acting director of the Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons at the State Department, highlights this year’s Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report, which “underscores the responsibility national governments bear in combating human trafficking across the 3Ps of prosecution, protection, and prevention.” Johnstone notes the report’s introduction “focuses on the importance of local communities in the fight against human trafficking and encourages national governments to support and empower their partners on the ground” (6/28).

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