KFF Daily Global Health Policy Report

In The News

Number Of Ebola Cases Near 9,000, Deaths Near 4,500, WHO Says

News outlets discuss the latest statistics from the WHO on reported Ebola cases and deaths.

Reuters: Ebola deaths near 4,500 as virus spreads in West Africa: WHO
“A total of 4,493 people have died from the world’s worst Ebola outbreak on record, and the situation in Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone is deteriorating, the World Health Organization said on Wednesday…” (Giahyue et al., 10/16).

Wall Street Journal: Ebola Cases Nearing 9,000, Says WHO
“The Ebola outbreak is worsening in the three West Africa countries where the disease is concentrated, the World Health Organization said Wednesday, reporting the total number of cases was nearing 9,000. In an update, the United Nations health agency said 4,493 people had died of confirmed, suspected, or probable cases of Ebola, almost all of them in West Africa. A total of 8,997 cases have been reported…” (Morse, 10/15).

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U.S., European Leaders Commit To Coordinate, Enhance Actions On Ebola; U.N. Continues To Ramp Up Response

News outlets report on world leaders’ pledges to coordinate and enhance their responses to the Ebola epidemic, as the U.N. ramps up its response in hard-hit West African nations.

Agence France-Presse: World pledges Ebola action as infections soar
“Ebola’s escalating spread constitutes the worst global health emergency in years, world leaders warned, vowing to dramatically step up the response to the virus that has already killed nearly 4,500 people…” (Larson, 10/16).

The Guardian: More Ebola funds called for as disease’s spread rapidly outpaces aid
“…While there has, so far, been no ‘naming and shaming’ of countries deemed to be dragging their feet, President Barack Obama reiterated on Tuesday that ‘the world as a whole is not doing enough.’ The U.N. has said it will cost just under $1 billion to tackle Ebola over the next six months. On Wednesday, the WHO said $257 million had been received, or 26 percent of what the U.N. says is needed, with another $162 million pledged…” (Chonghaile, 10/15).

The Hill: Obama to allies: ‘Robust’ effort needed on Ebola
“President Obama ‘stressed the need for a faster and more robust international response to the Ebola epidemic’ in a videoconference Wednesday with the leaders of France, Germany, Italy, and the United Kingdom. … ‘The leaders agreed to work together to enlist greater support from more countries and to coordinate their efforts on the ground,’ the White House said…” (Sink, 10/15).

U.N. News Centre: Ebola response in ‘high-gear’ as U.N. official warns ‘things will get worse before they improve’
“The United Nations continues to ramp-up its Ebola response, reaching more than 530,000 people with food assistance in hard-hit Liberia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone, and, in the latter country, gathering survivors for a meeting to help deal with the psychological aftermath and stigma they face re-entering their communities…” (10/15).

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Obama Cancels Political Travel To Focus On Ebola Crisis, Pledges 'More Aggressive' Response

News outlets report on the White House response to the Ebola epidemic, as U.S. President Barack Obama cancels travel plans to focus on the crisis.

The Hill: Obama scraps Thursday travel to monitor Ebola
“President Obama scrapped his scheduled trip to Rhode Island and New York on Thursday to continue monitoring the Ebola crisis, the White House announced late Wednesday…” (Huggins, 10/15).

The Hill: Obama promises ‘much more aggressive’ response to Ebola
“President Obama said the federal government would adopt a ‘much more aggressive’ response to the Ebola crisis after reports that a second health care worker who contracted the virus flew across the country despite close contact with a patient…” (Sink, 10/15).

Politico: Obama cancels campaign trip; vows Ebola ‘SWAT team’
“…After meeting with a group of senior advisers who have been involved in the Ebola response, Obama told reporters that the Centers for Disease Control would deploy a ‘SWAT team’ to ‘go in as soon as a new case is diagnosed,’ preferably within 24 hours…” (Epstein, 10/16).

Wall Street Journal: Obama Calls for Rapid Response Teams to Contain Any Future Ebola Infections
“…Mr. Obama, speaking after meeting for more than 90 minutes with his senior advisers involved in the Ebola response, promised a review of every step of the government’s response since the first case appeared in the U.S. He said U.S. officials will more aggressively monitor incidents where the virus could potentially spread and apply ‘lessons learned’ from apparent breakdowns in the government’s response to any future cases…” (Lee/Sparshott, 10/16).

Washington Post: Obama cancels campaign trip to deal with ‘urgent’ Ebola situation
“…The president’s decision to scrap his travel schedule to attend to what press secretary Josh Earnest described as ‘a pretty urgent situation here in this country’ laid bare the challenge the White House faces in managing the federal response to the deadly disease. Federal officials are eagerly trying to restore public confidence in the nation’s public health system at a time when its flaws are glaringly evident…” (Epstein, 10/15).

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USAID's Shah Says Ebola-Stricken Nations Taking Right Approaches To Contain Disease

Associated Press: USAID Says Ebola Nations Following Right Approach
“A U.S. official touring the West African countries worst hit by the deadly Ebola virus expressed optimism Wednesday that the right strategies to fight the disease are in place, even as warnings mount over the deteriorating situation. … The leaders of the affected countries are clearly committed to fighting the disease and with international help are taking the right approaches to stop the transmission of the virus, said the head of the U.S. Agency for International Development Rajiv Shah…” (Diallo/Schemm, 10/15).

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News Outlets Examine Federal Response To Ebola, Epidemic's Influence In U.S. Politics

News outlets examine the federal response to the Ebola crisis, including analysis of its potential influence in U.S. politics.

CQ HealthBeat: Ebola Watch: Congress Begins Grappling With a Response
“A House subcommittee is returning from recess for a hearing Thursday that should offer a preview of how Congress will react to the spread of Ebola when it reconvenes next month. With three states touched directly by the Ebola virus so far and effects rippling into others, lawmakers are beginning to grapple with a wide range of policy implications that extend well beyond the public health response into transportation and legal issues…” (Ferguson, 10/15).

The Hill: President Obama’s Ebola problem
“The Ebola crisis in the United States has become an anchor threatening to sink the Obama presidency. Already under fire from critics who saw the federal response to the outbreak as disorganized and timid, things went from bad to worse on Wednesday when it was revealed a second nurse had contracted the disease while treating a Liberian man at a Dallas-area hospital…” (Sink, 10/15).

Reuters: White House shifts into crisis mode on Ebola response
“Rising public anxiety about the Ebola virus has forced the White House to shift into crisis mode and cancel two days of planned political events as President Barack Obama strives to show he has control over stopping the spread of the deadly disease. Just three weeks ahead of critical midterm elections, Obama is facing increased pressure from Republican critics…” (Rampton, 10/16).

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U.S. Efforts To Contain Domestic Ebola Cases Show Challenges Of Containing Virus

News outlets examine the U.S. response to two nurses diagnosed with Ebola in Dallas after they cared for a Liberian man who died of the disease there last week.

The Atlantic: A Second Nurse and Second Guesses on Ebola
“Senior U.S. officials are growing more worried about an Ebola outbreak that has now infected two health workers in Dallas, including one who traveled on a commercial airliner with a fever a day before being diagnosed with the disease…” (Berman, 10/15).

CQ News: Shifts in Ebola Treatment Strategy Hint at Tough Choices Ahead
“The decision Wednesday to transfer the second health care worker in Texas who preliminarily tested positive for Ebola to Emory University Hospital in Atlanta illustrates the federal government’s reactive and rapidly evolving strategy to prevent the spread of the virus now that it’s within U.S. borders…” (Zanona/Attias, 10/15).

New York Times: With New Ebola Case Confirmed, U.S. Vows Vigilance
“New shortcomings emerged Wednesday in the nation’s response to the Ebola virus after it was revealed that a second nurse was infected with Ebola at a hospital here and that she had traveled on a commercial flight the day before she showed symptoms of the disease…” (Fernandez/Healy, 10/15).

Wall Street Journal: New Push to Check Spread of Ebola
“Concerns grew about containing the spread of Ebola in the U.S. after federal health officials disclosed Wednesday that the second Texas nurse infected with the virus flew from Dallas to Cleveland and back in the days before reporting her symptoms…” (Nicas et al., 10/15).

Washington Post: Ebola, the CDC and why government struggles with unprecedented disasters
“…It’s an unprecedented situation, to be sure, and it’s in the very early stages. But people rely on agencies to be prepared for the unknown. When they’re not, it sometimes leads to the perception that government is failing, which can be especially damaging to agencies such as the CDC that depend on an aura of confident expertise to keep a jittery public calm…” (McCoy, 10/16).

The Hill: CDC: Second Ebola-infected nurse ‘should not have’ traveled (Ferris, 10/15).
The Hill: HHS chief: ‘We could have done much better’ on Ebola (Ferris, 10/15).
Politico: Ebola gaffes fuel quarantine questions (Gerstein, 10/16).
Reuters: U.S. health official allowed new Ebola patient on plane with slight fever (Garza/Wade, 10/16).
ScienceInsider: One more question, Dr. Frieden: 11 things we’d like to know about the new Ebola case (Cohen/Kupferschmidt, 10/15).
Wall Street Journal: In Ebola Cases, New Focus on Power to Control Travel (Palazzolo, 10/15).
Washington Post: Health care worker with Ebola was allowed to fly despite slight fever (Berman et al., 10/15).

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U.S. Hospitals Face Challenges In Effectively Treating Ebola Patients

News outlets examine how lax Ebola protocols, insufficient training, and incomplete protective gear necessary to lower health care workers’ risk of infection are hindering U.S. hospitals’ preparations to treat patients.

The Hill: Report: Ebola nurses in Dallas wore no special protective gear for two days (Viebeck, 10/15).
Politico: Ebola protocols: Who is most in danger? (Levine, 10/16).
Reuters: Extreme measures: U.S. hospitals take on Ebola, but at what risk? (Steenhuysen, 10/16).
New York Times: Downfall for Hospital Where Ebola Spread (Sack, 10/15).
New York Times: Lax U.S. Guidelines on Ebola Led to Poor Hospital Training, Experts Say (McNeil, 10/15).

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Ebola Epidemic Could Cause Food Crisis In West Africa, Experts Warn

News outlets report on the impact of the Ebola epidemic on food security in West Africa.

Associated Press: Ebola escalation could trigger major food crisis
“The global famine warning system is predicting a major food crisis if the Ebola outbreak continues to grow exponentially over the coming months, and the United Nations still hasn’t reached over 750,000 people in need of food in West Africa as prices spiral and farms are abandoned. On the eve of World Food Day on Thursday, U.N. agencies and non-governmental organizations are scrambling to scale up efforts to avert widespread hunger…” (Lederer, 10/16).

International Business Times: Ebola Outbreak 2014: An Impending Food Crisis Worries Officials
“The Ebola outbreak is causing a food crisis in West Africa. The virus has already killed more than 4,000 people and left local residents struggling to cope with food shortages and spiking prices…” (Caulderwood, 10/15).

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Officials Weigh Human, Civil Rights In Ebola Responses

Associated Press: Ebola crisis puts pressure on human rights
“…Some doctors in countries hit hardest by the deadly Ebola disease decline to operate on pregnant women for fear the virus could spread. Governments face calls from frightened citizens to bar travel to and from afflicted nations. Meanwhile, the stakes get higher as more people get sick, highlighting a tricky balance between protecting people and preserving their rights in a global crisis…” (Torchia, 10/15).

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Ebola Epidemic Eventually Will Stabilize, Expert Says

Forbes: Why Scientists Say Ebola Will Surge But Then Level Off Before The Disease Takes Over The World
“…[Joshua Epstein, a professor of emergency medicine at Johns Hopkins and an expert on disease modeling,] spoke Tuesday at a meeting, Dean’s Symposium on Ebola: Crisis, Context and Response, held at the University’s Bloomberg School of Public Health. In his talk and in a discussion afterwards, he explained not only why the virus is unlikely to destroy the human race, but why he thinks it’s unlikely to reach the CDC’s prediction of 1.4 million cases. On the more pessimistic side, however, he said he’s not sure this outbreak will ever be completely extinguished. In his projection, the number of new cases hits a peak, then falls, but not to zero…” (Flam, 10/15).

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China Sends Experimental Ebola Drug To Africa For Clinical Trials

News outlets report that China has sent an experimental drug developed by its military to Africa for clinical trials.

Financial Times: China sends thousands of doses of anti-Ebola drug to Africa
“China has sent thousands of doses of an experimental anti-Ebola drug developed by the Chinese military to Africa. The company manufacturing the drug said it plans to start human clinical trials there soon. Sihuan Pharmaceutical, the private Chinese company that last week purchased the rights to commercialize jk-05 from a branch of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA), said it began manufacturing the drug after it was approved in August as a ‘special drug for military needs’…” (Waldmeir/Cookson, 10/15).

Reuters: China sends Ebola drug to Africa, eyes clinical trials
“A Chinese drugmaker with military ties has sent an experimental Ebola drug to Africa for use by Chinese aid workers and is planning clinical trials there to combat the disease, executives at the firm told Reuters on Thursday…” (Jourdan, 10/16).

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Handwashing Is Important Tool In Fight Against Ebola, UNICEF Says

Media sources report on Global Handwashing Day, recognized annually on October 15, and UNICEF’s spotlight on how the practice is an important tool in the fight against Ebola.

U.N. News Centre: On World Day, U.N. spotlights handwashing as vital tool in fight against Ebola
“As the world celebrates the seventh annual Global Handwashing Day, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) is spotlighting how the simple practice not only saves lives, but is also instrumental in the fight against Ebola. … UNICEF is using this year’s Day to raise awareness about Ebola in the affected countries, counter misconceptions, and promote handwashing to combat the further spread of the disease…” (10/15).

UNICEF: Handwashing one important tool in the Ebola fight — UNICEF
“As the world celebrates the seventh Global Handwashing Day, UNICEF said the fight against Ebola further underscores the practice of handwashing in disease prevention…” (10/15).

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World Food Day Focuses On Family Farming

Inter Press Service: Family Farming — A Way of Life
“It does not make the headlines, but 2014 is the International Year of Family Farming (IYFF) and family farming will be center stage at this year’s World Food Day on Oct. 16 at the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO)…” (Schiavi, 10/15).

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Climate Change Will Negatively Impact Food Security In Africa, Report Says

Inter Press Service: Measuring How Climate Change Affects Africa’s Food Security
“…Experts from around the world are certain that climate change is playing a major role in the difficulties … hundreds of thousands of other farmers are experiencing on the continent. According to the Fifth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), ‘there is strong consensus that climate change will negatively impact food security in Africa’…” (Fernández de Castro, 10/15).

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Deutsche Welle Examines Malnutrition, Family Planning In Niger

Deutsche Welle: Niger’s malnourished children
“In Niger, children with dusty blond hair are ubiquitous: It’s a sure sign of widespread malnourishment. Resources are scarce, while fertility rates are soaring. Yet family planning is an uphill struggle…” (Conrad, 10/15).

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Editorials and Opinions

Editorial, Opinion Pieces Address Ebola Epidemic

The following editorial and opinion pieces examine the Ebola epidemic and issues surrounding the international response.

Wall Street Journal: The Ebola Twilight of Public Institutions
Editorial Board

“…[The Ebola epidemic is] ruthlessly exposing the decay of the once-eminent public institutions that were established to contain such transnational contagions — organizations both international and domestic. … The United Nations-run WHO has long been a growing irrelevance, as Director-General Margaret Chan spent the week not in Monrovia but Moscow, pontificating at a WHO conference aimed at raising global tobacco taxes. More disquieting are the failures of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the rest of the American public health establishment, which is supposed to be run by the government’s finest. … The World Health Organization ought to be defunded to discipline its ineptitude and frivolity … [H]and the money to a more serious and capable institution. The problem these days is identifying which that might be” (10/15).

Huffington Post: AIDS to Ebola: Moving From Peril to Progress
Susan Blumenthal, public health editor at the Huffington Post and former U.S. assistant surgeon general, and Terrol Graham, Allan Rosenfield public policy fellow with amfAR

“…Tragically, despite extensive emergency preparedness planning and reports issued in the aftermath of 9/11, the anthrax attacks, SARS, and H1N1 flu, the world is still unprepared to fight Ebola. It now appears that these reports never translated into the global actions needed for a surge response anywhere in the world when a new infectious disease killer emerges. … Sadly, we must learn once again from this current public health emergency that plans cannot just be developed and put on a shelf. They must be designed for immediate implementation with a global command structure and ready reserve of personnel and resources for rapid deployment to anywhere in the world to control disease spread…” (10/15).

Huffington Post: Stopping Ebola With Public Health Expertise, Not Casual Advice
Linda Fried, dean and DeLamar professor of public health at Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health

“As the Ebola crisis continues to grow, America is facing the proliferating challenges of how best to help in West Africa, how to prevent the spread of the disease in the United States, and how to assert incontrovertibly that public health scientists understand how to prevent and control outbreaks like this. Our nation is fortunate to have at the forefront of that effort the most capable public health organization in the world, and as these challenges multiply, it is imperative that we allow the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the larger public health community, to act on the best science available without becoming distracted and immobilized by media and partisan second-guessing. Too often, they cloud our vision and thwart an effective response. … [Federal and state public health agencies] are by far our best hope of defeating this terrible disease and can do so with our full non-politicized support” (10/15).

TIME: How Lessons From the AIDS Crisis Can Help Us Beat Ebola
Ruth Katz, director of the health, medicine and society program at the Aspen Institute

“…To get ahead of the curve, we need a renewed commitment to research and action, and enough resources to put more public health boots on the ground, both at home and abroad. Greater support for the Global Health Security Agenda, designed to close gaps in the world’s ability to quell infectious disease, should be a priority. The agenda, launched earlier this year, is a partnership involving the U.S. government, WHO, other international agencies, and some 30 partner countries. For too long, the history of infectious diseases has been that of ignoring a threat until it nears disaster, and then stepping in to prevent it from getting even worse. We can’t afford to keep repeating that pattern, and squandering blood and treasure in the process…” (10/15).

Washington Post: In Ebola fear, a familiar whiff of paranoia
Steven Petrow, journalist and syndicated columnist

“There have been only three confirmed cases (and one death) of Ebola in the United States, but a related condition is spreading faster than a California wildfire. Americans nationwide are showing signs of an epidemic of fear, all too reminiscent of the stigmatization, dread of contagion, and moral panic of the early years of the HIV/AIDS epidemic. … Still, the legacy of [the HIV] epidemic is clear: Without strong political leadership, science-based policies, and a responsible media, we are headed down a frighteningly familiar road. There is one link between these two health scares that gives me hope, and that’s the heroism and selflessness displayed by frontline health care providers tending to patients in West Africa and now in the United States. … Indeed, the current Ebola outbreak provides lessons to be avoided — and lessons to be repeated” (10/15).

Dallas Morning News: Ebola didn’t have to kill Thomas Eric Duncan, nephew says
Josephus Weeks, U.S. Army and Iraq war veteran

“On Friday, Sept. 25, 2014, my uncle Thomas Eric Duncan went to Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas. He had a high fever and stomach pains. He told the nurse he had recently been in Liberia. But he was a man of color with no health insurance and no means to pay for treatment, so within hours he was released with some antibiotics and Tylenol. … Eight days later, he died alone in a hospital room. … I write this on behalf of my family because we want to set the record straight about what happened and ensure that Thomas Eric did not die in vain. So, here’s the truth about my uncle and his battle with Ebola. Thomas Eric Duncan was cautious. … Thomas Eric Duncan was a victim of a broken system. … Thomas Eric Duncan could have been saved. … In time, we may learn why my uncle’s initial visit to the hospital was met with such incompetence and insensitivity. Until that day comes, our family will fight for transparency, accountability, and answers, for my uncle and for the safety of the country we love” (10/14).

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Opinion Pieces Discuss Food Security, Recognize World Food Day

The following opinions discuss various aspects of food security and recognize World Food Day, marked on October 16.

CNN: Can we feed everyone?
Evan Fraser, a Canada research chair at the University of Guelph, a visiting professor at the University of British Columbia, and a fellow of the Pierre Elliot Trudeau Foundation

“…Can the world’s supply of food continue to meet demand? World Food Day, being marked Thursday, seems as good a time as any to wrestle with this question. And for once, it looks like there is actually some good news in the fight against global hunger. … Yes, famines, droughts, and food riots will be an increasing feature of the headlines in the decades ahead. But this should not distract from the underlying: The world can have a well-fed future, one where everyone has enough to eat” (10/16).

National Geographic: To Combat Malnutrition, Don’t Just Produce More Food — Produce Better Food
José Graziano da Silva, director general of the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO)

“…Overcoming hunger and malnutrition in the 21st century no longer means simply increasing the quantity of available food. Quality must also increase. We can do this most effectively by creating nutritious, sustainable, and responsive food systems. … A strong political commitment is required to improve our food systems. Nutrition needs to be moved higher up the development agenda. Better diets have to become an explicit objective of policies, programs, and interventions in the food systems. Agricultural research and development must focus on finding new and improved ways to produce more diverse, balanced, and healthy diets that include more nutrient-rich foods and to support farmers in fostering local biodiversity and diversified farming systems…” (10/15).

Huffington Post: Progress on World Food Day: Food Security Legislation Moves Forward
Katie Lee, policy manager at InterAction

“…Congress must pass legislation that would authorize Feed the Future, the critical U.S. government program for global food and nutrition security. In doing so, we can solidify U.S. leadership in fighting poverty, build and improve upon the vital work of the Feed the Future Initiative, and continue to leverage a whole-of-government approach to tackling global hunger and malnutrition. And most importantly, we can continue our fight against hunger, malnutrition, and extreme poverty over the long-term, until a future World Food Day when 805 million has become zero” (10/15).

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Opinion Pieces Recognize Global Handwashing Day

The following opinion pieces discuss Global Handwashing Day, recognized on October 15.

Huffington Post: Global Handwashing Day in the Time of Ebola
Jeffrey Sachs, director of the Earth Institute at Columbia University, and Myriam Sidibe, global social mission director at Unilever-Lifebuoy

“…On this Global Handwashing Day, let’s commit ourselves to good personal hygiene and to help for all of those around the world who cannot afford it on their own. Ebola has reminded us of the most basic truth: we are all in this together. Epidemics in one place, no matter how poor and remote, can quickly become crises for all. Yet we also know that health for all is within reach, through greater awareness, stepped up help for the poor, and creative public-private partnerships that allow companies, civil society, and governments to each contribute to the end of poverty and preventable disease” (10/15).

Devex: Moving beyond the tippy tap
Hanna Woodburn, deputy secretariat director for the Global Public-Private Partnership for Handwashing

“…Now is the time to move beyond the tippy tap. As such, on Global Handwashing Day I want to explore both the ways in which innovation is occurring and cast a vision for how this innovation can be spurred going forward. First, the WASH sector must learn from the lessons of our colleagues in other areas of development. … Second, we must consider the spaces where infrastructure isn’t conducive for hand-washing. … Finally, to incentivize innovation, we need to have a better understanding of the current hygiene circumstances in countries where it is most needed. … [I]t is only by moving forward in new ways that we can hope to truly address some of the greatest development challenges of our generation” (10/15).

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Blocking Transmission Key In Malaria Fight

Devex: Block transmission
Martin Edlund, CEO of Malaria No More

“…[F]or malaria, the transit between mosquito and man isn’t just a joyride — it’s an essential step in reproduction. By blocking transmission, you isolate the mosquito and interrupt that process. … The classic approach to blocking transmission is to protect people from mosquito bites using bed nets or insecticide sprays. … However, to break the back of transmission, we have to rethink the problem. We must move beyond vilifying the mosquito — and the key may be protecting mosquitoes from humans. … New vaccine approaches target two ‘choke points’ when parasites are at their fewest in number during their complex life cycle: the transitions from mosquito to man, and from man to mosquito. These potential vaccines could effectively hold the line against onward transmission of the parasite, stopping malaria dead in its tracks…” (10/15).

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Technology Exists To Recreate Infectious Viruses From Genome Sequences

New York Times: Resurrecting Smallpox? Easier Than You Think
Leonard Adleman, professor of computer science and molecular biology at the University of Southern California

“…It is possible that the great labs, with great scientists, the best equipment and substantial funds, could overcome the considerable challenges that exist and resurrect smallpox right now [using the sequence for the smallpox genome, which is published online]. Before too long, more modest labs may be able to accomplish the same thing. … Do we sit and wait for the day when someone releases resurrected smallpox on an unvaccinated world? I’m a scientist, not a policy expert. But would it be wise for us to consider limiting the distribution of the tools of this emerging technology?” (10/15).

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From the Global Health Policy Community

Kaiser Family Foundation Releases New Poll On Americans' Views On Ebola

Kaiser Family Foundation: Kaiser Health Policy News Index: Special Focus On Ebola
The Kaiser Family Foundation released findings from the organization’s new Tracking Poll on Americans’ views on Ebola. The poll, which was fielded after a Liberian man was diagnosed with Ebola in Dallas and remained in the field after a nurse who helped care for him contracted the disease, examines Americans’ attention to the Ebola crisis, awareness of key facts about the disease, and views of the U.S. role in addressing Ebola in Africa and at home. Specifically, the poll finds that few Americans expect a widespread Ebola outbreak in the U.S., although some are worried they or a family member may become infected; most Americans say they trust local, state, and federal health authorities to contain the disease; and Democrats, Republicans, and Independents all support a major U.S. role fighting Ebola in West Africa. These and other findings are available online (10/16).

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USAID Announces New Data Sharing Policy

USAID’s “IMPACTblog”: Announcing USAID’s Open Data Policy
Angelique Crumbly, assistant administrator for USAID’s Bureau for Management, and Brandon Pustejovsky, chief data officer at USAID, discuss the agency’s new development data policy, known as Automated Directives System 579 (ADS 579). They write, “In an era of unprecedented openness in government, ADS 579 is USAID’s first ever open data policy, providing a framework for systematically collecting agency-funded data in a central repository, structuring the data to ensure usability, and making the data public, while ensuring rigorous protections for privacy and security…” (10/15).

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WHO Hiring Process Needs Reforms

Center for Global Development’s “Global Health Policy Blog”: Hiring Reform at WHO
Amanda Glassman, senior fellow and director of global health policy at CGD, discusses the hiring of the WHO’s regional directors and calls for the process to be reformed (10/15).

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New Digital Media Project On Ebola Launched

Ebola Deeply: Digital Media Project
“Ebola Deeply is an independent digital media project launched by a team of journalists and technologists, working to improve the state of information around a global crisis. Our goal is to build a better user experience of the story by adding context to content, integrating expertise in science, health, and public policy with a range of voices on the ground. Our team is committed to a collaborative and solutions-driven model of journalism, surfacing new insights and elevating voices with knowledge to share. With time, we hope to add greater clarity, deeper understanding, and more sustained engagement to the global conversation” (accessed 10/16).

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New Issue Of 'Global Fund News Flash' Available Online

Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria: Global Fund News Flash
The latest issue of the Global Fund News Flash discusses domestic funding for health in low- and middle-income countries and the fund’s emphasis on gender in its new funding model as well as its Gender Equality Strategy (10/15).

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