COVID-19

As New Covid Boosters Move Forward, Better Outreach is Needed to Save US Lives

This week––nearly ten months after the emergence of the Omicron variant––the United States is rolling out Covid-19 booster vaccines that specifically target newer, now-dominant strains of the virus.

Inequitable Global Health Responses Underscore Need for More Self-Sufficiency in Developing Countries

With the outbreak of Monkeypox in non-endemic countries leading to a scramble for vaccines, global health advocates are again calling for equity to be prioritized in the international response.

Developing Countries Must Grow More Food
Climate change and war on Ukraine a wake-up call

As our planet continues to heat up, extreme weather has affected many of us. From the west coast of North America across Europe, the Middle East and Asia to Pakistan and New Zealand, wildfires and flash floods have destroyed homes and property and disrupted the daily lives of millions.

1980s’ Redux? New context, Old Threats

As rich countries raise interest rates in double-edged efforts to address inflation, developing countries are struggling to cope with slowdowns, inflation, higher interest rates and other costs, plus growing debt distress.

Transforming Girls’ Education, Changing The World

As we approach this year’s Transforming Education Summit, global leaders can and must prioritize expertise and mobilize political will to support efforts to ensure inclusive and quality education for all, especially girls. This is at the heart of Sustainable Development Goal 4 in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, as well as the commitments made in the Charlevoix Declaration and the G7 Declaration on Girls’ Education.

100 Million People with Long COVID is a Crisis We Must Address

More than two-years in, the COVID-19 pandemic rages on with rising cases and deaths every day.  A silent and more long-term pandemic occurring simultaneously is long COVID. The impact of long COVID has serious consequences for the future of humanity and should worry us all.

Shaping Our Digital Future

Asia and the Pacific is the most digitally divided region of the world, and South-East Asia is the most divided subregion. The Covid-19 pandemic detonated a “digital big bang” that spurred people, governments and businesses to become “digital by default;” a sea change that generated vast digital dividends. These benefits that have not been distributed equally, however. New development gaps have emerged as digital transformation reinforces a vicious cycle of socioeconomic inequalities, within and across countries.

COVID-19: Scientists Warn That It’s Not Over Till It’s Over

After two years of economic and social upheaval caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, many countries, including South Africa, have lifted the tough protocols such as lockdowns, the mandatory wearing of masks and social distancing.

UN’s Education Summit: An Opportunity to Create a Bottom-Up Global Governance

The upcoming summit on Education, part of the UN Secretary General’s ambitious agenda, can truly bring accountability and participation to the inevitably new ways education will be imparted in the future.

April Fool’s Inflation Medicine Threatens Progress

The world economy is on the brink of outright recession, according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF). The Ukraine war and sanctions have scuttled recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.

‘Positive Sei’ Bringing Hope to Homes on the Airwaves

Tonga was still picking up the pieces after the Hunga volcanic eruption and tsunami waves when the pandemic reached its shores.

To End AIDS, We Need to End Punitive Laws Perpetuating the Pandemic

This week, the global HIV response community is gathering in Montreal to address the crisis of stalling progress that is putting millions of people in danger.

Rising Sea Levels, Drought, Hurricanes and Deforestation Threaten Latin America and the Caribbean

The highest deforestation rates since 2009. The third most active hurricane season on record. Extreme rainfall, floods, and landslides displaced tens of thousands of people. Rising sea levels. Glaciers in Peru lost more than half their size. Add the devastating impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic to the mix, and 2021 was a challenging year for Latin America and the Caribbean.

An Integrated Regional Response for the Sahel Crisis

The current Ukraine-Russia conflict is dominating the global media to the point of overshadowing longer protracted crisis that no longer make headlines, but are still rife. Such is the case with the on-going Sahel crisis, one of the world's most neglected ones, where acute poverty, the dramatic effects of climate change and rising armed conflicts have become the norm for more than a decade. A situation further exacerbated by the on-going COVID-19 pandemic.

Reject CPTPP, Stay out of New Cold War

Joining or ratifying dubious trade deals is supposed to offer miraculous solutions to recent lacklustre economic progress. Such naïve advocacy is misleading at best, and downright irresponsible, even reckless, at worst. TPP ‘pivot to Asia’ US President Barack Obama’s ‘pivot to Asia’ after his 2012 re-election sought to check China’s sustained economic growth and technological progress. Its economic centrepiece was the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).

Achieving the SDGs in Extraordinary Times

The start of the “Decade of Action” to achieve the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) has also marked the start of an unprecedented period of overlapping crises.

News Fatigue, Anti-Vax and Wars

During the beginning of the pandemic, people wanted to learn more about COVID-19. Enclosed in their homes they watched with fear and fascination how the pandemic swept over the world, while comparing numbers of affected people and the death-toll in different countries. Watching COVID’s rampage became a kind of horror show. However, already after a few months with death-tolls rising and isolation not being over anytime soon, psychological fatigue set in. Judging from media coverage it now appears as if the pandemic finally is over, which is far from being the case.

Animals are Core to Pandemic Prevention – We Must Strengthen Their Defences

The ongoing discussions at the World Health Organization (WHO) around a new, landmark ‘pandemic prevention treaty’ shows that the world is starting to act on the lessons it learned from the COVID-19 pandemic.

‘When it Comes to Gender Equality, Our Best is Not Good Enough’: says Dr Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka

The Covid-19 pandemic has impacted lives all over the world. According to this report, gender is emerging as a significant factor in the social, economic and health effects of Covid-19. Women have been hit much harder socially and economically than men. The greatest and most persistent gender gap was seen in employment and uncompensated labour, with 26% of women reporting loss of work compared with 20% of men globally in September 2021.

The Battle for Covid-19 Vaccines: the Rich Prevail Over the Poor

The 164-member World Trade Organization (WTO) has implicitly rubber-stamped a widely-condemned policy of “vaccine apartheid” which has discriminated the world’s poorer nations, mostly in Africa and Asia, depriving them of any wide-ranging intellectual property rights. As Max Lawson, Co-Chair of the People’s Vaccine Alliance and Head of Inequality Policy at Oxfam, said at the conclusion of the WTO’s ministerial meeting last week: “The conduct of rich countries at the WTO has been utterly shameful”.

How to Stop the ‘Hunger Pandemic’ During COVID-19

Johnny, living in the United States (US), goes to his school and gets free breakfast and lunch there. There may not be enough food for dinner at home. But he knows that he can get fed at school. Sadly, however, after the pandemic, schools were closed, which meant no breakfast and no lunch for him.

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