Also In Global Health News: Rotavirus Vaccine; Guinea Worm Eradication; Health Systems; Zulu King Calls For Male Circumcision

West African Group Calls For Governments To Vaccinate Children Against Rotavirus

The West African Rotavirus Advisory Board is calling on governments to vaccinate children against rotavirus, IRIN reports. At a recent meeting in Dakar, Senegal, which was “financed by GlaxoSmithKline, makers of one of two rotavirus vaccines” the board issued a document recommending that governments “immediately recognize the magnitude of the rotavirus problem and make vaccination against the virus a priority” (12/8).

Guinea Worm Eradicated From Nigeria, Carter Center Says

No guinea worms have been found in Nigeria for 12 consecutive months, according to the Carter Center, which, after 20 years, is “ready to declare a major victory in its war on guinea worm” in a country that was “once the worst-afflicted” in the world, the New York Times reports. Donald Hopkins, the chair of the Carter Center’s International Task Force for Disease Eradication, said it will take two years for the WHO to make an official declaration (McNeil, 12/7).

PlusNews Examines Health System Strengthening

PlusNews examines expert opinions that call for an “inclusive approach to healthcare, rather than narrow HIV programmes.” Some “argue that investment in HIV programming has left other healthcare needs in the developing world underfunded,” the news service writes. The article looks at a recent paper on the subject by Management Sciences for Health and includes quotes from Jonathan Quick, the NGO’s chief executive officer (12/7).

Zulu King Proposes Reintroducing Male Circumcision To Fight HIV

The king of South Africa’s Zulus recently “proposed reintroducing [male] circumcision – formerly practised as a ritual by Zulus – to help fight the spread of HIV/AIDS,” according to SAPA news service, the BBC reports (12/7). “A number of studies have shown that circumcising men can halve their chances of contracting the HIV virus and the WHO has recommended including circumcision among anti-AIDS strategies since 2007,” Agence France-Presse reports. King Goodwill Zwelithini is reportedly in talks with health authorities to discuss ways to implement male circumcision programs (12/6).

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