Health

What Explains Vaccination Rates in EBRD Regions?

Officially reported deaths from Covid-19 started to rise again in autumn 2021 in a number of economies in the EBRD regions. While in advanced economies in Europe the mortality rate has remained low despite the pick-up in Covid-19 cases, in the EBRD regions the mortality and infection rates continued to move in tandem.

Refugee Voices Matter – Nothing about Us, Without Us

Over the past two years, the global refugee response has been tested. The world is being rocked by the greatest pandemic in over a century, while waves of refugees have fled from Afghanistan, Myanmar, Belarus, and Tigray. So, where do we go from here? Next week, the international community will convene to take stock of the successes and shortcomings of the Global Compact on Refugees (GCR), a unique multilateral mechanism built to ensure the protection of one of the most vulnerable populations. This marquee Compact is up for review, but unlike other review processes, the participation of the people whose lives are shaped by the decisions to be made in the review process will be marginal. Unfortunately, only 1 in 50 of the invited attendees at the UNHCR High-Level Official’s Meeting (HLOM) to discuss the GCR are refugees.

Omicron & Developing Countries – Where Threats are the Greatest

On 25 November, news emerged from South Africa of a new COVID-19 variant. It has since been identified as Omicron, a Greek alphabet derivation the World Health Organization (WHO) reserves for virus variants “of concern”.

Climate Change: Adapt for the Future, Not the Past

Funding for developing countries to address global warming is grossly inadequate. Very little finance is for adaptation to climate change, the urgent need of countries most adversely affected. Also, adaptation needs to be forward-looking rather than only addressing accumulated problems.

All Humans Are Born Equal in Rights? That’s Still Far from Being True

”All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.” These words are a sound introduction to the transcendental issue of human rights and equalities, as stated by the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR).

Africa Should Bargain Hard for COVID Vaccine Equity: Lessons from Indonesia during Avian Flu

Many countries around the world have punished most of the African continent for the scientific discovery of the Omicron variant through the imposition of travel bans.

Zero-Leprosy in Pandemic: Experts, Advocates Discuss New Strategies

As 2021 nears its end, public health systems worldwide remain severely strained by COVID 19, which is showing no sign of ending. But even as countries battle to control the deadly pandemic, they must also maintain the progress made against other diseases, including leprosy, global leprosy experts and advocates have urged.

Social Distance, Science and Fantasy

In these times of COVID isolation, social distance get on the nerves of several of us and the effects may be long-lasting, even endemic. Many schoolchildren have interacted and still meet with their teachers through computer networks, while the same phenomenon applies to their contact with others. Technical devices are with an ever-increasing scope becoming an integral part of all communication, teaching, and entertainment, in short – of social interaction. When it comes to education, given all the poor and even harmful educators we are forced to encounter during our lifetime, mechanization of education might be perceived as a step forward. Nevertheless, too much dependence on the internet might undoubtedly have its pitfalls; contributing to an abstraction of our existence where real adventures and life-changing encounters with other human beings become all the rarer. The world may be demystified, losing its wonder and magic.

Partnering with Persons with Disabilities Toward an Inclusive, Accessible and Sustainable Post-COVID-19 World

As the world observes the International Day of Persons with Disabilities today, we honour the leadership of persons with disabilities and their tireless efforts to build a more inclusive, accessible and sustainable world. At the same time, we resolve to work harder to ensure a society that is open and accommodating of all.

Big Tobacco Industry Rides COVID-19 Pandemic as Countries Grapple for a Response

Almost two years into the COVID-19 pandemic, many countries in the developing world continue to grapple with basic issues such as securing sufficient vaccines and providing essential medical care for their sick. Many economies are in recovery mode as governments scramble to resuscitate them with recovery packages and build back better plans.

Building a Disability-Friendly Workplace: Why Includability Matters

In her famous speech ‘The Danger of a Single Story’, Nigerian writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie warns us against a singular narrative of a person—a stereotype. This, Adichie asserts, is not because stereotypes are untrue, but because they are incomplete—“They make one story become the only story.” This is true in all walks of life, including in our interactions with people with disabilities at workplaces.

What Will it Take to Turn Farmers Toward Climate-Resilient Superfood Millet?

Millet could be Africa’s silver bullet for combating anaemia – and apart from health benefits, it is climate-resilient.

Global Solutions Needed for Pandemics, So All Can Live in Dignity

COVID-19 highlighted significant gaps in the world’s ability to deal with pandemics, and it’s crucial these are addressed to mitigate the impacts of future global health problems, Masato Kanda, Japan’s Vice Minister of Finance for International Affairs, told a recent online meeting of parliamentarians.

Inequality is Set to Kill Millions – “We Have to Fight it Together.”

This week I called out to the world to warn them that inequalities are making us all unsafe. I noted starkly our new analysis that we face millions of additional AIDS deaths – 7.7 million in the next decade alone – as well continued devastation from pandemics, unless leaders address the inequalities which drive them. We have to treat this threat as an emergency, as a red alert.

How Inequality Drives HIV in Adolescent Girls and Young Women

Despite the advances that have been made against HIV, the world has 37 million people living with HIV. And 680,000 people died from AIDS-related causes in 2020. While the prevention of mother to child transmission, and provision of treatment as prevention, are great successes, there are still gaps. Over 1.5 million new HIV infections were recorded in 2020.

How to Tackle the Femicide Epidemic

Since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, the increase in domestic violence rates has led the United Nations to declare a ‘shadow pandemic’ of gender-based violence. In the most brutal cases, the violence has led to murder – or ‘femicide’, as the World Health Organisation calls the killing of women specifically because of their gender.

School Meals Coalition Hopes to Provide a Meal to Every Child

Meals at schools not only give each child a nutritious meal but increase enrolments, among other benefits.

Ongoing Pandemic Push Africa’s Children Out of School

Kenya’s secondary schools’ administration has been in the eye of a storm since schools reopened in October 2021. Since then, students have set on fire 35 schools and counting, forcing the government to announce an unscheduled break from school – ahead of the planned December 23 closing.

The Good, the Bad, the Ugly: What Went Wrong During India’s COVID-19 Response

From its devastating economic impact and the migrant crisis to the startling death toll, the COVID-19 pandemic in India unfurled one crisis after the other. The glaring gaps in our system, which had always been there, became even more prominent during the pandemic. There is one question at the back of everyone’s mind that still remains unanswered: What went wrong?

Protecting Environmental Water from Antimicrobial Resistance

The overuse and misuse of antimicrobial medicines and chemicals has become the main driver of antimicrobial resistance (AMR) and drug-resistant infections that threaten human health and the global economy.

Corporate Fear Drives Caribbean Vaccine COVID-19 Mandates

When face-to-face Cabinet meetings resumed in Jamaica following more than a year of virtual meetings due to COVID-19, Ministers lined up to have their immunisation cards inspected.

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