KFF Daily Global Health Policy Report

In The News

In First Article Of Special Series On SDGs, TRF Examines Access To Water In Zambia

Thomson Reuters Foundation: SPECIAL SERIES — Zambian capital can’t quench thirst of its booming population
“…Overall, the proportion of people in Zambia with access to clean water has increased since 1990. But in urban areas it has dropped to 85 percent in 2012 from 89 percent in 1990. With Zambia’s population forecast to grow five-fold or more by 2100, experts expect the southern African country will struggle to meet the demand for water, especially in urban areas where population growth is expected to be fastest…” (Mis, 9/13).

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More Development Funding Available But Poorer Nations Must Use Caution When Borrowing, UNDP Official Says

Xinhua News: Interview: Untapped funds could help pay for Sustainable Development Goals: U.N. official
“Untapped funds could help pay for the U.N.’s new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) but poorer countries should exercise caution when borrowing money, Gail Hurley, a development finance expert with the U.N. Development Programme (UNDP), told Xinhua…” (Rowlands, 9/11).

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Hindu Spiritual Leader Donates $15M To Provide Toilets Near India's Ganges River

The Guardian: Can $15m worth of toilets finally clean up the Ganges?
“A Hindu spiritual leader has donated $15 million to build thousands of toilets in villages along the Ganges in an effort to cleanse India’s holy river from the pollution caused by the country’s open defecation crisis. Mātā Amṛtānandamayī Devī, known as Amma (‘mother’) to her followers, made the donation to prime minister Narendra Modi’s stuttering push to ensure all Indians are using toilets by 2019, saying it was ‘one of the most important tasks of the hour’…” (Mathiesen, 9/11).

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Technology, Innovation Playing Role In Ebola Recovery, Research Into Treatments

Fast Company: Meet Two Sisters Taking On The Ebola Aftermath In West Africa
“…In this post-Ebola recovery time, [There Is No Limit Foundation’s (TINLF)] goal is to rebuild health systems in Guinea and other parts of West Africa through strategic partnerships with hospital administrations, supplying health care facilities with medical equipment and tools, and streamlining access to medical information. [Sisters Aissata Camara and Mariama Camara-Petrolawicz, who are originally from Guinea and cofounded TINLF,] are targeting mobile technology to help create these opportunities…” (Rowley, 9/11).

Fortune: Ebola’s “magic pill” might actually be a machine
“…Current trends have companies looking at the use of sensors, robotics, and analytics to better understand the nature of infectious disease, and how and why a particular pathogen spreads, says [Venkat Rajan, global director of the Visionary Healthcare Program at Frost & Sullivan]. But he says there is also opportunity for manufacturers to develop new devices that can help manage a patient’s condition once they have been infected as well…” (Sukel, 9/10).

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More Effort Needed To Protect Residents Near Dams From Malaria, Study Says

Thomson Reuters Foundation: One million Africans a year catch malaria from dam mosquitoes — study
“One million Africans will catch malaria this year because they live near a large dam and, at a time of booming dam construction on the continent, greater efforts must be made to protect people from the killer disease, a study in Malaria Journal said…” (Migiro, 9/11).

Washington Post: Malaria cases in Africa are soaring. Here’s the surprising reason why.
“…The authors suggest that developers have failed to anticipate the potential for disease outbreaks in choosing locations for new projects in highly populated areas. While dams clearly bring many benefits, the health problems associated with soaring malaria rates are significant enough to cancel out some of the progress they bring, said lead author Solomon Kibret, a biologist with the University of New England in Armidale, Australia…” (Warrick, 9/11).

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Boko Haram Insurgency Contributing To Food Insecurity, Malnutrition For 5.5M In Western, Central Africa, U.N. Says

IRIN: Millions going hungry because of Boko Haram
“Families driven out of villages, farmers unable to tend crops, food stocks of entire communities raided: Boko Haram’s impact on the people of Western and Central Africa lingers long after the rape and slaughter. More than 5.5 million people living in conflict areas in Nigeria, Cameroon, Niger, and Chad, nearly half of whom have been displaced due to ongoing attacks by the Islamist militant group, don’t have enough to eat or else lack access to nutritious foods, according to the U.N.’s emergency aid coordination body OCHA…” (9/11).

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Editorials and Opinions

Achieving SDGs Requires Ending Conflicts, Addressing Needs Of Children In Humanitarian Crises

The Guardian: Development must target the millions of children affected by humanitarian crises
Anthony Lake, executive director of UNICEF

“…[W]e will not reach [the post-2015] development goals — nor can development be sustainable — without reaching the millions of children living in the midst of humanitarian crises. … The international community tends to compartmentalize humanitarian and development crises — separate funding appeals, separate advocacy campaigns, and separate conferences. … But children living through crises see no distinction between humanitarian and development action … [W]e need to keep breaking down the silos between humanitarian and development action. … Ending conflicts would open the single greatest pathway to global development; the best way to save lives; the best way to foster a generation of children ready, willing, and able to sustain development into the future…” (9/11).

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Global Community Must Use Innovative Communication To Spread Awareness Of SDGs

Devex: Move the human heart
Sally Susman, executive vice president for corporate affairs at Pfizer and vice chair of the Pfizer Foundation

“…The aspiration of the SDGs — what are also being referred to as the global goals — and the intent of governments are significant milestones, but it is unleashing the power of a caring human spirit that will bring the change we seek. Launching a 15-year global campaign will be no small task. The communications plan will require an innovative social movement that reaches people in the ways they receive their information. … At Pfizer, we plan to start close to home. The congestion brought about by our physical proximity to the U.N.’s General Assembly and one of New York City’s most famous thoroughfares (42nd Street), is an opportunity to tell a story that inspires. Working with the United Nations Foundation, our windows will help get the word out about the SDGs and support a conversation we want to build on social media…” (9/14).

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Food Fortification, Effectively Measuring SDG 2 Progress Crucial To Ending Hunger By 2030

Rappler: Ending hunger, ensuring nutrition by 2030
Anna Lartey, director of the Nutrition Division in the Economic and Social Development Department at the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization

“…How can we ensure that the nutrition component of the Global Goals is upheld and not overshadowed? Two suggestions, both based on the premise that consideration of food quality (as opposed to quantity) is key. First, agricultural productivity must pay attention to nutrient-dense foods. Second, countries must recognize that there are multiple entry points for improving nutrition through agriculture and food systems. … Increasing demand for and availability of globally comparable, routinely collected indicators of diet adequacy is imperative for holding agriculture and food systems to a higher, more health-centered standard. Global Goal 2 — ending hunger by 2030 — offers a tremendous opportunity in this regard” (9/14).

Al Jazeera America: Hidden hunger is a global killer
Mark Van Ameringen, executive director of the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition

“…If we are serious about ending hidden hunger, governments in the developed world need to ramp up support for fortification programs, from ensuring staple food producers have easy access to micronutrient mixes to facilitating quality fortified food production to educating consumers about the benefits of choosing fortified foods and enabling the private sector to do its part. Evidence shows that making food fortification mandatory and vigorously enforcing quality and compliance is key to ensuring a healthier future for millions of people. … When combined with other critical interventions, … fortification contributes to a powerful recipe to tackle malnutrition. The tools have been in our hands for nearly a century; it is time we use them better” (9/12).

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From the Global Health Policy Community

SDGs Must Include More Specific Mental Health Targets

WhyDev: Where is mental health in the SDGs?
Minto Felix, the mental health programs coordinator at Monash University and a mental health campaigner at Australians for Mental Health, writes, “The entire way in which the global community engages with mental health requires reform.” He proposes several mental health targets he says should be included in the Sustainable Development Goals, which he writes “make one reference to mental health, which calls on the global community to ‘promote mental health and wellbeing.’ This simply does not go far enough…” (9/10).

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Social Enterprise Program In India Aims To Improve Access To Toilets

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s “Impatient Optimists”: An Unexpected Question: Mandy Moore Advocates for Sanitation in India
Singer-songwriter and actress Mandy Moore, a global ambassador for Population Services International (PSI), writes about her recent trip to India, where she “joined the PSI India team to learn how they and their partners, including the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Unilever, are building toilets and developing a sanitation system in Bihar by turning the traditional nonprofit model on its head. PSI India has developed a social enterprise and is treating the open defecation problem like a business problem…” (9/11).

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