While Western countries were busy with their own vaccination campaigns, Russia has filled the leadership vacuum in developing countries.
Amid the West’s scramble for vaccines, a trickle of news flies under the radar. Argentina becomes the first country in South America
to produce Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine. The first shipment of Sputnik V is promised
to Peru by May.
The month of May marks mental health awareness month or mental health awareness week in several countries around the world. Many people will be reading posts and blogs about the importance of getting more sunshine and exercise to avoid the blues, about ways to deal with the stress of the pandemic, about dealing with everyday challenges that disrupt our striving for happiness.
The Coronavirus infections and deaths in India recorded a daily high on Monday, 10 May, with 366,161 new infections and 3,754 deaths as reported by the Indian health ministry, taking India's total tally to 22.66 million with 246,116 deaths. Experts have raised a flag stating India's actual figures could be far higher than what is currently being reported.
Thanks to President Biden, the US now supports a suspension of intellectual property (IP) rights to increase vaccine supplies. However, without vaccine developers sharing tacit technical knowledge for safe vaccine mass production, it will be difficult to rapidly scale up vaccine output.
The news of the Biden Administration's willingness to lift intellectual property rights protections in the case of the Covid-19 pandemic has sent the world into turmoil, even though in recent days this willingness had become increasingly airy.
We are living through a decisive moment. The COVID-19 pandemic’s devasting impact is reaching every corner of the world. As we look back at this period, we will see history divided into a pre-COVID and a post-COVID world.
In rebuilding after COVID-19, policymakers must invest in innovative technology to leapfrog obstacles to inclusive development. Africa has enjoyed strong economic growth for most of the 21st century, mainly because of robust global demand for primary commodities.
When Dr Aqsa Sheikh Tweeted and asked if she was the only transgender person to head a vaccination centre, it seemed extraordinary that in a country with 1.3 billion people, that this could be true.
The COVID-19 pandemic, protracted conflicts and climate change have created an untenable situation for the most vulnerable, with 155 million people across 55 territories suffering from severe food insecurity, sending acute hunger figures to a 5-year high.
There is considerable evidence that vitamin D reduces the risk and severity of COVID-19 (Mercola 2020
; Wimalawansa, 2020
). More than 50 clinical studies have published confirming that high doses of vitamin D administered early in persons with COVID-19 significantly reduce complications and the need for ICU admissions.
Since the COVID-19 vaccination began in the US in mid-December 2020, Africa had been looking forward to its turn. For Nigeria, that time came on 2nd March 2021 when the first batch of 3.9 million doses of AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine arrived in the country from the Serum Institute of India.
We were able to keep the coronavirus at bay for five months in Gaza, the densely populated Palestinian strip of land surrounded by Israel that I call home. But the Coronavirus doesn’t respect walls or artificial borders. While preparations were made for the pandemic to inevitably breach a blockade so few Palestinians can, we waited for it to come for us. And it did.
The SARS-CoV-2 infection (COVID-19) affected the entire world; many died, millions got sick, and the misery continues. Second and third waves of SARS.Cov-2 infection are devastating most countries.
Yasmine Sherif, Director of Education Cannot Wait (ECW), has sounded the alarm on the need for Central African Republic refugee children and youth to access quality education during her visit to a refugee site in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) from Apr. 20-23.
Conventional wisdom is that the health of young children is not at great risk from COVID-19, but, in the Global South, the space constraints imposed on young children by the pandemic pose a significant risk to the stimulation on which brain development thrives. Early childhood development is further jeopardized by the pandemic’s impact on caregivers.
Sylvain Kakule Kadjibwami lost the use of his legs during one of those ambushes that bloodlessly bleed North Kivu. “When I was shot, I thought it was the end of my life, but when I shared it with other disabled people, I discovered that life is still possible,” he said. Now it is Covid-19 that risks destroying the dreams of Sylvain, a small trader from Goma, a city whose roads are volcanic rock-ridden screes where pick-ups trudge. Those who walk face the risk of falling at every step. However, for those who cannot, the same roads can become traps where it is not only war that kills but also a stigma fostering misery and disease.
When we were growing up in the sixties during the time of the Cold War between the USA and the then Soviet Union, we would often hear about a possible Third World War. Sometimes, the situation would get so heated that people would fear the Third World War might not be far away. I still remember the events in 1961, when the threats and counter-threats between President John Kennedy and Prime Minister Nikita Khrushchev over the Bay of Pigs reached such an extreme level that a Third World War seemed imminent.
Landmines are among the most insidious and cruel weapons of all, because they do not distinguish between armed soldiers, civilians or even children.
Last week Ministers of Finance met virtually at the Spring Meetings
of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank to discuss policies to tackle the pandemic and socio-economic recovery.
Millions of lives lost. Trillions of dollars in economic damage. Over 120 million more people pushed into extreme poverty. The human and economic toll of the COVID-19 pandemic is almost unimaginable – a once-in-a-century catastrophe.
With the two extremes of global hunger and obesity on the increase, a new report suggests a radical reset for food and nutrition to ensure the long-term sustainability of livelihoods and the environment.