Also In Global Health News: Bird Flu; Burundi’s Global Fund Grant; Maternal Mortality In Ghana; Food Security In Africa; Messaging Strategy Of Charities

WHO Warns Bird Flu Continues To Pose Threat

Despite a reduction in the number of cases of avian flu (H5N1) since its peak in 2006, the WHO said in a statement Wednesday that “the newly confirmed human and poultry cases of avian influenza this year are a reminder that the virus poses a real and continuous threat to human health,” Agence France-Presse reports (3/24). “The WHO noted that so far this year, 21 human cases of H5N1” have been reported, including seven fatalities, Deutsche Presse Agentur /The Hindu reports. WHO “added that Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, India, Israel, Myanmar, Nepal and Vietnam have reported outbreaks of the disease in poultry or wild bird flocks,” the news service writes (3/24). 

Burundi Uses Global Fund Grant To Expand HIV/AIDS Prevention, Testing, Treatment

PANA/Afrique en ligne examines how the country of Burundi plans to use the $135 million, five-year HIV/AIDS grant it received from the Global Fund to Fight HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. According to Yves Sahinguvu, the Burundian first vice-president in charge of political, administrative and security affairs, the grant will fund an expansion of voluntary HIV testing, antiretroviral treatment for children and adults, and to prevent mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) of HIV/AIDS, among other things (3/24).

During Annual Review Meeting, WHO Official Expresses Concern Over Maternal Mortality In Ghana

The annual review of the Family Health Division of the Ghana Health Service (GHS) opened in Koforidua, Ghana, on Wednesday, with a WHO representative “pledging … support to Ghana to contain the maternal mortality situation,” GhanaWeb reports. During the meeting, the WHO’s Fleischer Djoleto “said maternal mortality in Ghana remained a major concern” and expressed “the need to intensify family planning strategies and research into how best strategies could reach the targeted people,” according to the news service (3/24).

Food Security Talks Open In Tanzania With Official Calling For African Nations To Increase Investments In Agricultural Sector

Ousainou Ngum, the executive director for the Agency for Cooperation and Research Development (ACORD) on Tuesday called upon leaders from African countries to “commit at least 10 percent of their annual budgets to boost food production” during the opening of food security talks in Arusha, Tanzania, The Citizen reports. “Our leaders must create investments that are conducive to agricultural sector, with a bias towards small scale farmers, women and pastoralists,” Ngum said to “officials from 13 African countries including EA states,” according to the newspaper. The Citizen notes, “Africa needs an investment amounting to some $20 billion (Sh26 trillion) in agriculture investment in order to eradicate chronic food insecurity in the continent where millions go hungry every year” (Ubwani, 3/24).

New York Times Examines Messaging Strategy Of Clean Water Charity

The New York Times examines the marketing strategy of a charity known as the “Tap Project, which helps UNICEF deliver clean drinking water to children in developing countries.” Since its creation in 2007, Tap Project has helped to raise nearly $1.5 million for UNICEF, according to the newspaper. The article explores how the campaign to support the charity has evolved over the years, as additional water charities have come on board, and natural disasters, such as the January earthquake in Haiti, have captured the attention of donors (Elliott, 3/23).

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