KFF Daily Global Health Policy Report

In The News

Chinese Leader To Speak At U.N. Gender Equality Meeting, Irking Some Activists; U.N. Women Head Praises Nation's Progress On Education, Health

Associated Press: Chinese Leader to Address U.N. on Gender Equality, Vexing Some
“Chinese leader Xi Jinping will preside this weekend over a U.N. conference on gender equality, which some activists say is galling given China’s recent detentions of women’s rights activists and its history of stopping people from attending U.N. meetings to discuss such issues…” (Watt, 9/24).

Xinhua/China Daily: Interview: China improves significantly education, health for women: U.N. Women chief
“U.N. Women chief Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka applauded the progress China has made in women empowerment, especially in the areas of education and health. In a recent interview with Xinhua, Mlambo-Ngcuka highlighted education and health, saying China has made significant improvement for women in both areas…” (9/24).

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China's First Lady Peng Liyuan Explores HIV, Smoking Cessation Research On Tour Of Cancer Center

CCTV America: China’s first lady Peng Liyuan on why she fights against HIV/AIDS
“Chinese First Lady Peng Liyuan toured an HIV research lab in Seattle. She is a World Health Organization ambassador in the fight against HIV/AIDS. A while back, she sat down with CCTV’s James Chau and explained what motivates her involvement…” (9/23).

Seattle Times: China’s first lady focuses on global health in Fred Hutch tour
“China’s first lady, Peng Liyuan, focused attention on the global health problems of HIV infection and tobacco use during a hush-hush visit Wednesday to a Seattle cancer center. … Accompanied by Bill and Melinda Gates, the wife of Chinese President Xi Jinping smiled and nodded as she heard about efforts to find a vaccine to fight the virus that causes AIDS and research into the most promising ways to help smokers quit…” (Aleccia, 9/23).

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World Leaders Set To Approve Development Goals More Ambitious Than MDGs

Los Angeles Times: Leaders aim for sustainable development after Millennium goals success
“After a decade of dramatic global health and economic advances, world leaders are set to adopt a sweeping agenda to eradicate extreme poverty and child mortality and spur efforts to slow climate change and preserve the environment. The so-called Sustainable Development Goals — expected to be formally approved at the United Nations this week at the largest-ever gathering of heads of state, including President Obama — have garnered little attention in the United States…” (Levey, 9/23).

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AP Examines U.N. At 70, Debate Over Future Structure, Mission

Associated Press: Syria, Ebola Failures Highlight U.N. Shortcomings
“The worsening war in Syria, allegations of child sexual abuse by U.N. peacekeepers and the mishandling of the Ebola epidemic cast a spotlight on the inadequacies of the United Nations in a globalized world, operating with a power structure that hasn’t changed since 1945. … The paralysis shows in the debate over what the U.N. should be…” (Lederer, 9/23).

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WHO, Partners Set To Continue West African Ebola Response Into 2016

Associated Press: U.N. Ebola response now planned to continue into 2016
“…The World Health Organization and its humanitarian partners indicated Wednesday that Phase Three of their Ebola response would continue into 2016. Those activities include stopping transmission of Ebola, indicating more cases are anticipated…” (Larson, 9/23).

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Iraq Works To Stem Cholera Outbreak As Case Number Rises To 121

Reuters: Cases in Iraq cholera outbreak rise to 121, but no new deaths: ministry
“Iraq’s first major cholera outbreak since 2012 has risen to at least 121 cases and spread to southern provinces along the Euphrates River, though no new deaths have been reported in days, the health ministry said on Wednesday…” (Hameed/Kalin, 9/23).

Washington Post: Amid battle against IS, Iraqis face cholera outbreak
“…The cause lies partially with Iraq’s antiquated and badly maintained water and sewage systems, and the outbreak comes at a time when Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi is struggling with large demonstrations protesting the government’s inability to provide security or basic public services…” (Salaheddin, 9/23).

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Number Of Malaria Deaths, Cases Increasing In South Sudan Refugee Camp, MSF Warns

Thomson Reuters Foundation: Malaria deaths skyrocket in South Sudan as people continue to flee fighting
“Malaria is killing three children each day in an overcrowded camp sheltering civilians in South Sudan, a medical charity said, as people continue to flee fighting despite an August peace deal that has yet to be felt on the ground. Malaria is ‘skyrocketing,’ with 4,000 patients receiving treatment each week — about four percent of the population of Bentiu camp, Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) said in a statement…” (Migiro, 9/23).

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Taiwan Records 42 Dengue Deaths So Far This Year, Double 2014 Total

Agence France-Presse: Taiwan suffers deadliest ever dengue outbreak
“Taiwan is suffering its deadliest ever outbreak of mosquito-borne dengue fever with a record high of 42 deaths, authorities said Thursday, double the number that died in 2014. … The total number of cases for 2015 has already hit 15,282, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) said, the majority of them in southern Tainan City…” (9/24).

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Volunteer Female Community Health Workforce Delivers Maternal, Child Care Throughout Nepal

The Atlantic: The Women Who Keep Nepal Healthy
“With their distinctive blue saris, 52,000 female community-health volunteers are at the front lines of medical care in Nepal. Since 1988, they’ve provided maternal and child health information and health services throughout the Himalayan kingdom, treating diarrhea and pneumonia, the primary causes of childhood mortality, as well as other diseases that crop up among Nepal’s rural-dwelling citizens…” (Hua, 9/23).

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Achieving Gender Parity Can Add $12T Annually To World Economy, Study Shows

The Guardian: Tackling gender inequality could add $12tn to world economy, study finds
“…The McKinsey Global Institute has measured gender inequality across 95 countries, using 15 different indicators, including not just women’s role in the workplace, but everything from the availability of contraception to access to bank accounts. The study found that if each country could make progress towards closing the gender gap at the pace of the best-performing economy in its local region, an extra $12tn — equivalent to the GDP of Japan, Germany, and the U.K. combined — could be generated each year by 2025…” (Stewart, 9/23).

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Ending Extreme Poverty Will Require Aid Commitments, Strategic Shifts, Better Data Collection, Report Says

The Guardian: Global goal of ending extreme poverty will hinge on fresh thinking, says study
“…[E]xtending the gains made since the MDGs were introduced in 2000 will require a firm commitment to official aid flows, a shift in national poverty reduction strategies, and a revolution in data collection, according to a new report on the SDGs and their possible impact. In Investments to End Poverty, the research group Development Initiatives says the headline goal of ending extreme poverty by 2030 will be more challenging than halving poverty…” (Chonghaile, 9/23).

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Multimedia Collaboration Examines World's Outbreak Preparedness After Ebola Epidemic

NOVA Next: Preparing for the Next Outbreak
“…In the series, the ‘Next Outbreak,’ our journalists are reporting on-the-ground in Asia, Africa, and North America, asking how doctors, epidemiologists, and public officials responded to the last pandemic and what it will take to be prepared for future outbreaks. … The ‘Next Outbreak’ is a multimedia collaboration of The GroundTruth Project and NOVA Next in association with WGBH Boston. The project is part of the GroundTruth’s global health reporting, made in partnership with the Kaiser Family Foundation” (Miley/De Chant, 9/16).

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Editorials and Opinions

Bipartisan Support, Partnerships Will Help Advance U.S. Global Development Efforts

Huffington Post: Development Is a National Security Priority
Susan Rice, U.S. national security adviser

“…Over the past six years, the United States has rallied the international community to promote food security and global health. We’ve made smarter use of our foreign-assistance money to catalyze investment from our partner governments around the world and from the private sector. And we’ve led the way in prioritizing the connection between secure and peaceful communities and growing our shared prosperity. That commitment will be reflected this weekend when leaders from around the world gather at the United Nations to adopt … the U.N. 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. … I’m proud that in the United States, there’s a growing bipartisan consensus about the importance of development — both in Congress and among the American people, our NGOs, corporations, and faith-based organizations. We rely on this partnership and support to continue advancing our development work around the world…” (9/23).

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Ahead Of U.N. Summit, Opinion Pieces Discuss Various Aspects Of SDGs

The following opinion pieces address various aspects of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which the U.N. is expected to adopt at an upcoming summit.

Devex: 7 steps toward sustainable development by 2030
Andrew Griffiths of Sightsavers U.K. and co-chair of Beyond 2015; Philipp Schönrock of CEPEI Colombia and co-chair of Beyond 2015; Leo Williams, Beyond 2015 international coordinator; and Naiara Costa, Beyond 2015 advocacy director (9/23).

Devex: Promoting healthy lives, access to water and well-being for all
Tessie Tzavaras Catsambas, president and chief financial officer at EnCompass (9/23).

Huffington Post: Parliaments the Key to SDGs Success
Martin Chungong, secretary general of the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) (9/23).

Devex: Without tackling substandard medicines, health goals will falter
Reema Jweied-Guegel, vice president of development at U.S. Pharmacopeial Convention (USP) (9/23).

Huffington Post: Why Health Care Must Remain A Priority For New Sustainable Development Goals To Work
Mit Philips, head of the health access team at the advocacy and analysis unit at Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), and Aine Markham, health policy analyst and adviser at MSF (9/24).

Huffington Post: Reproductive Freedom for the World’s Poorest Women
Joy Phumaphi, co-chair of Aspen Global Leaders Council for Reproductive Health and executive secretary of the African Leaders Malaria Alliance, and Aparajita Gogoi, national coordinator of White Ribbon Alliance for Safe Motherhood, India (9/23).

Huffington Post: 4 Reasons Why You Need to Celebrate Our New Global Goals
Lisa Schechtman, director of policy and advocacy at WaterAid America (9/23).

The Conversation: U.N. Sustainable Development Goals
Various authors (9/23).

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Congress Should Adopt Reach Act To Help End Preventable Child, Maternal Deaths

Roll Call: Our Chance to Reach Every Mother and Child
Joanne Carter, executive director of RESULTS and RESULTS Educational Fund

“…The [Reach Every Mother and Child Act of 2015], led by Sens. Susan Collins, R-Maine, and Chris Coons, D-Del., would enshrine … [reforms to end preventable child and maternal deaths] into law. With Congress back in Washington, it should seize the opportunity to take up this bill and change the course of our shared future. The health and well-being of the world’s mothers and children is not — and never has been — a partisan issue. … Congress and both of the past two administrations have shown that they understand this. If they choose, our lawmakers now have the chance to put that shared belief into action” (9/24).

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Opinion Pieces Discuss Issues Surrounding Pharmaceutical Research, Drug Pricing

The Guardian: Drug-price hikes don’t lead to better cures. We must find another way forward
Philipp du Cros, infectious diseases specialist and head of the Manson Unit at Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders (MSF) U.K.

“…We must move beyond the idea that high prices are the only way to make drug development happen and stop swallowing the line that as long as we pay high prices, diseases that have until now been neglected will suddenly find the research backing they need. It’s simply not the case…” (9/24).

Al Jazeera America: We need publicly funded pharmaceutical research
Benjamin Spoer, PhD student at NYU’s College of Global Public Health

“…In an ironic twist, we can thank [Turing Pharmaceuticals CEO Martin] Shkreli for illuminating the disconnect between public health’s humane motives and biotech firms’ profit motives. Leaving drug development up to the market puts us at risk of prioritizing the health of people who can afford health care over the health of people who cannot. … An increase in public funding for pharmaceutical research would address the cause of these problems…” (9/24).

New York Times: Room for Debate: Should the Government Impose Drug Price Controls?
Multiple authors

“…Does the government need to impose price controls to reduce the exorbitant cost of many drugs?” Multiple authors answer this question and others in several opinion pieces published as part of this New York Times “Room for Debate” (9/23).

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From the Global Health Policy Community

Drug Pricing Regulation 'Would Best Serve Global Health'

Center for Global Development’s “Global Health Policy Blog”: The 5000% Price Increase and the Economic Case for Pharma Price Regulation
In light of a recent move by Turing Pharmaceuticals CEO Martin Shkreli to increase the price of the toxoplasmosis drug Daraprim by more than 5,000% overnight, CGD Senior Fellow Mead Over and Senior Policy Analyst Rachel Silverman discuss the global health implications of potential pharmaceutical pricing regulations. “…Just as utility companies best serve the public interest under government regulation for their local markets, multinational pharmaceutical companies would best serve global health under global regulation that supervises their international pricing as well as their research expenditures…” (9/23).

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Global Network Event For Political, Religious Leaders Aimed To Strengthen Commitment To End NTDs

Global Network for Neglected Tropical Diseases’ “End the Neglect”: A Call to Compassion and Unity
Ahead of Pope Francis’ address to the U.S. Congress on Thursday, Michelle Brooks, policy director for the Global Network for Neglected Tropical Diseases, discusses a recent event hosted by the Global Network and co-sponsors “celebrating the bipartisan commitment of the U.S. government in the fight against NTDs. … The reception, ‘A Call to Compassion: Spotlight on NTDs,’ sought to build further support for the NTD cause among members of Congress, the administration, the broader policy community, private sector partners, and lay leaders in the Catholic Church…” (9/23)

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Blog Post Highlights Collaboration Between China, Seattle Development, Global Health Communities

Humanosphere: Seattle’s global health community has strong presence in China
Humanosphere founder Tom Paulson discusses Chinese president Xi Jinping’s visit to Seattle to speak with Bill Gates on how best to collaborate on technology and business, as well as both Seattle’s and China’s role in global health innovation (9/23).

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