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Kaiser Daily Global Health Policy Report

In The News

WHO, Partners Announce Global Roadmap To Prevent 90% Of Cholera Deaths By 2030

BBC News: First global pledge to end cholera by 2030
“Health officials from around the world are meeting in France to commit to preventing 90 percent of cholera deaths by 2030. … It is the first time governments, the World Health Organization, aid agencies, and donors have made such a pledge…” (Mazumdar, 10/3).

CIDRAP News: WHO, partners launch road map to slash cholera deaths
“…The 32-page road map, posted [Tuesday] on the WHO’s web site, focuses on 47 countries affected by the disease with a three-part strategy centering on early detection and quick response, a multisector effort to prevent recurrence, and effective coordination at the local and global levels…” (Schnirring, 10/3).

Thomson Reuters Foundation: Factbox: New war on cholera aims to consign killer disease to history books
“…The new global plan focuses on tackling cholera hotspots, where outbreaks occur at the same time each year, by improving water and sanitation services, and through use of oral vaccines. The strategy could help eliminate cholera in 20 affected countries by 2030, according to the WHO…” (Batha, 10/3).

U.N. News Centre: U.N. and partners aim to slash 90 percent of cholera deaths by 2030
“…With an estimated 95,000 cholera-related deaths, and another 2.9 million more people affected annually, the Global Task Force on Cholera Control (GTFCC), a diverse network of more than 50 U.N. and international agencies, academic institutions, and others, will launch [today] ‘Ending Cholera: A Global Roadmap to 2030,’ which pinpoints endemic ‘hotspots’ where predictable cholera outbreaks occur year after year…” (10/3).

VOA News: Plan Aims to Sharply Reduce Cholera Deaths Worldwide by 2030
“…Health professionals say new tools, including oral vaccines, can prevent death from cholera. They note it has been more than 150 years since rich countries achieved cholera control. They say poor countries also can end cholera by improving water, sanitation, and hygiene” (Schlein, 10/3).

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TIME Highlights Women Of New WHO Senior Leadership Team

TIME: The World Health Organization Just Picked Its New Leaders. Most of Them Are Women
“The World Health Organization announced its new senior leadership team Tuesday, and more than 60 percent of the appointees are women. ‘The team represents 14 countries, including all WHO regions, and is more than 60 percent women, reflecting my deep-held belief that we need top talent, gender equity and a geographically diverse set of perspectives to fulfill our mission to keep the world safe,’ WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in a statement…” (Quackenbush, 10/4).

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U.N. Appoints Natalia Kanem Of Panama To Head UNFPA; Advocates Call For Strong, Supportive Stances On SRHR

Devex: Family planning sector welcomes Kanem as new UNFPA head
“Family planning advocates and women’s rights groups have welcomed Dr. Natalia Kanem’s appointment as the new head of the United Nations Population Fund and called on her to take a strong and supportive stance on divisive issues, including abortion, comprehensive sexuality education, and rights for sexual minorities…” (Edwards, 10/4).

U.N. News Centre: Pioneer of work in women’s reproductive health appointed head of U.N. Population Fund
“…Currently serving as the agency’s acting executive director, the new under secretary general is the fifth executive director of the U.N. Population Fund (UNFPA). Prior to that, she was the UNFPA’s deputy executive director for programs and earlier, its representative in Tanzania…” (10/3).

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U.N., Aid Agencies Work To Contain Diarrheal Disease Outbreak Among Rohingya Refugees In Bangladesh

VOA News: Rohingya Refugees in Bangladesh at Risk as Diarrheal Diseases Spread
“Aid agencies are scaling up efforts to contain an outbreak of diarrheal diseases that could have serious health consequences for many of the more than one-half million Rohingya refugees from Myanmar who are living in squalid, overcrowded conditions in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh…” (Schlein, 10/3).

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WHO Could Have Responded Sooner To Yemen Cholera Outbreak, Agency's Emergencies Chief Says

Associated Press: U.N.: More should have been done to fight cholera in Yemen
“The World Health Organization’s emergencies chief says the agency could have acted faster and sent more vaccines to fight a massive, deadly surge of cholera cases in war-battered Yemen this year. Dr. Peter Salama still expressed optimism that ‘we are turning (the) corner’ on the preventable, water-borne disease that has topped 700,000 suspected cases and caused more than 2,000 deaths this year…” (Keaten, 10/4).

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Nations Must Curb Antimicrobial Use In Agricultural Animals To Prevent Continued Drug Resistance, Experts Say

Thomson Reuters Foundation: Curb animal antibiotics to stop spread of resistance, say health experts
“Giving farm animals too many antibiotics can stoke resistance to the drugs, and despite countries taking measures to curb their use in agriculture, in populous nations such as China and India antibiotic use on farms is expected to soar. Farming experts say action is needed — especially as global demand for meat rises — to curb drug resistance…” (Whiting 10/3).

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Stigma, Discrimination Prevent People Living With HIV From Seeking Treatment, UNAIDS Report Shows

U.N. News Centre: HIV-related stigma, discrimination prevent people from accessing health services — U.N.
“People living with HIV who experience high levels of stigma are more than twice as likely to delay enrollment into care than people who do not perceive such stigma, a United Nations report released [Tuesday] reveals…” (10/3).

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NIH To Continue Development Of Zika Vaccine As Disease Remains Threat, NIAID Director Says

Bloomberg BNA: NIH Wants to Develop a Zika Vaccine, Hopes Never to Use It
“The Zika virus isn’t going away, and the southern hemisphere may even experience an uptick in cases early next year, the NIH’s infectious disease chief said Sept. 28. That’s why the National Institutes of Health continues to test an experimental vaccine that could prevent the mosquito-borne virus linked to serious birth defects, Anthony S. Fauci said during a policy forum on examining modern medicine…” (Baumann, 9/28).

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Editorials and Opinions

All Governments Must Commit To Long-Term, Sustainable Cholera Prevention To End Outbreaks By 2030

Nature: Make plans to eliminate cholera outbreaks
Anita Zaidi, director of the Enteric and Diarrheal Diseases (EDD) program at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

“…This week, the World Health Organization (WHO) launches a campaign to eliminate cholera outbreaks by 2030. The plan could move countries beyond ad hoc reactions, to sustainable prevention. … Too many countries act only after a crisis has emerged: then they request vaccine campaigns, set up makeshift cholera clinics, and urgently mobilize supplies. These tactics can quell an outbreak and dampen transmission in the short term, but they don’t stop outbreaks from happening again. … To truly stop cholera outbreaks, countries must do two things: deploy vaccines where cholera is endemic and strengthen the infrastructure that provides clean water and good sanitation. … The success of the WHO’s plan ultimately depends on the commitment of governments worldwide. All governments, whether or not they are directly affected by cholera, must unite and increase their political and financial investment in cholera prevention and control…” (10/3).

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New WHO Leadership Team Demonstrates Agency's Commitment To Gender Equality

HuffPost: A Leap Forward for Gender Equality in Global Health
Nicole Schiegg, strategic communications consultant

“Women have been making sizable contributions to global health for decades. We have influenced advocacy, policy, technical, and programmatic issues. However, as a global health community, we still battle conundrums like ‘all male panels’ and not seeing enough women in the top leadership positions. In that respect, [Tuesday] was a game changer. Dr. Tedros [Adhanom Ghebreyesus] announced his senior leadership team at the World Health Organization (WHO). Not only do leaders represent 14 countries, including all WHO regions, 60 percent of the appointments are women. This is [a] monumental moment for gender equality in global health leadership. … I am excited to see how these new WHO leaders will shape the organization. As I have said before, a strong WHO benefits us all. And we all have a role to play in WHO’s success. The same is true on advancing gender equality in global health — men and women alike…” (10/3).

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African, Global Leaders Must Ensure All People Have Access To Quality Health Care

HuffPost: Universal Health Coverage and the Road to Equality
Toyin Ojora Saraki, founder of the Wellbeing Foundation Africa

“…[Universal health coverage (UHC)] not only improves health, but also reduces poverty, creates jobs, drives economic growth, promotes gender equality, and protects populations against epidemics. … Currently, [Nigeria’s health] system struggles to live up to even the most basic public health responsibilities such as immunization coverage and access to family planning. … [W]e must act to ensure that every person, rich or poor, living in cities or rural areas, has access to quality health care. … Any innovator, partner, donor, or expert that seeks to make tangible positive change around the world cannot ignore Nigeria and its burgeoning population, and I would urge them to prioritize Nigeria for that reason. … [U]niversal health coverage is a political choice and a smart imperative. The vision and courage required has already been demonstrated by some, and the result will be a safer and healthier world. Political leaders in Africa and around the world must agree that the path of inaction is one that cannot be taken” (10/3).

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Strong Financial, Political Commitment To Improving India's Health System Needed For TB Elimination Plan To Succeed

The Conversation: India’s ambitious new plan to conquer TB needs cash and commitment
Madhukar Pai, director of global health and professor at McGill University

“…Earlier this year, India’s Revised National TB Control Program published a draft of a new National Strategic Plan (NSP) for TB Elimination 2017-2025. The NSP, if fully funded and well implemented, could be a game changer in the fight against TB in India. … India’s National Health Policy, approved this year, proposes to increase health expenditure by the government from the existing 1.15 percent to 2.5 percent of the GDP, by 2025. Ensuring this increase should be an urgent priority for India, and an absolute requirement if India is to make progress towards universal health coverage. … India has the potential to make great progress against [TB]. What is essential is a strong financial and political commitment from Prime Minister Narendra Modi to end the TB epidemic, and an overall greater investment in health. When health becomes a priority for India, TB will naturally decline, as will many other conditions that currently make India rank so poorly in health-related [Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)]” (10/3).

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From the Global Health Policy Community

CGD Podcast Discusses Rohingya Refugee Crisis, How U.S. Should Respond

Center for Global Development’s “CGD Podcast”: Sounding the Alarm on the Rohingya Crisis — Podcast with Eric Schwartz and Jeremy Konyndyk
In this podcast, Rajesh Mirchandani, vice president of communications and policy outreach at CGD, speaks with Eric Schwartz, president of Refugees International, and Jeremy Konyndyk, CGD senior policy fellow, about the Rohingya refugee crisis in Myanmar and how the U.S. should respond (10/3).

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Study Examines Cost-Effectiveness, Affordability Of Global Health-Related Interventions

PLOS Medicine: When cost-effective interventions are unaffordable: Integrating cost-effectiveness and budget impact in priority setting for global health programs
Alyssa Bilinski of the Interfaculty Initiative in Health Policy at Harvard University and colleagues write, “[C]ost-effective interventions are not always affordable. … This disconnect between cost-effectiveness and affordability can complicate efforts to identify and adopt high-value programs. This paper first assesses the current use of budget impact analysis (BIA) and cost-effectiveness analysis (CEA) in health economic assessments conducted for low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). We then recommend steps researchers and policymakers can take to better incorporate affordability information into health economic evaluations, alongside CEA…” (10/2).

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Aidspan Publishes New Issue Of 'Global Fund Observer'

Aidspan: Global Fund Observer
Aidspan, an independent watchdog of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, published Issue 321 of the “Global Fund Observer.” The newsletter contains numerous articles, including one on a transition readiness assessment report that suggests HIV-related civil society organizations in Panama may not “effectively survive the exit of the Global Fund,” and one on the potential implications of PEPFAR’s new strategy for the Global Fund (10/4).

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