94,417 research outputs found

    The Africa Malaria Report 2006

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    Low-dimensional clustering detects incipient dominant influenza strain clusters

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    Influenza has been circulating in the human population and has caused three pandemics in the last century (1918 H1N1, 1957 H2N2 and 1968 H3N2). The 2009 A(H1N1) was classified by World Health Organization as the fourth pandemic. Influenza has a high evolution rate, which makes vaccine design challenging. We here consider an approach for early detection of new dominant strains. By clustering the 2009 A(H1N1) sequence data, we found two main clusters. We then define a metric to detect the emergence of dominant strains. We show on historical H3N2 data that this method is able to identify a cluster around an incipient dominant strain before it becomes dominant. For example, for H3N2 as of 30 March 2009, the method detects the cluster for the new A/British Columbia/RV1222/2009 strain. This strain detection tool would appear to be useful for annual influenza vaccine selection

    Preventing Stock-outs of Antimalarial\ud Drugs in sub-Saharan Africa:Novartis’s SMS for Life

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    Malaria is curable. Although highly effective antimalarial drugs are available (up to 96% effective in the case of artemisinin-lumefantrine fixed-dose combinations), widespread stock-outs lead to deaths on a daily basis. Of the close to 2000 people who die from malaria each day, most are children under five years of age in sub- Saharan Africa (1). Having adequate supplies of drugs when and where they are needed is essential. This remains a major challenge, particularly in remote rural communities in low-resource countries where widespread antimalarial stock-outs frequently prevent patients from receiving treatment

    The World Health Organization’s Ninth Director-General: The Leadership of Tedros Adhanom

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    In May, the World Health Assembly elected Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus as its ninth Director-General, the first African to lead the World Health Organization (WHO) since its formation in 1948. Dr. Tedros faces a daunting task, with WHO facing a crisis of confidence after its much-maligned response to the West African Ebola epidemic. Does his leadership record bode well for the Organization’s future success? That success is vital to world health, as WHO alone has the international legitimacy to forge cooperative solutions to complex health challenges. Dr. Tedros’s record offers a sharp contrast between promise and peril for the Organization. As health minister for Ethiopia, Dr. Tedros forged unprecedented gains in population health; nevertheless, his country’s human rights record was abysmal during this same time period. In a new Milbank Quarterly Early View op-ed, Lawrence O. Gostin explains that WHO is currently in an unvirtuous cycle. Member states have lost confidence in the Organization, while donors refuse to fully fund it, leading to additional dysfunction and failure. If Dr. Tedros is to succeed, he must regain badly eroded trust—not only among member states, but also among civil society

    Naming the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) and the virus that causes it

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    This article is a sharing of information linked to the World Health Organization website. For more information, the reader can access the WHO website through this link: https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/technical-guidance/naming-the-coronavirus-disease-(covid- 2019)-and-the-virus-that-causes-it    Naming the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) and the virus that causes it Official names have been announced for the virus responsible for COVID-19 (previously known as “2019 novel coronavirus”) and the disease it causes.  The official names are: Disease  coronavirus disease  (COVID-19) Virus  severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2)   Why do the virus and the disease have different names?  Viruses, and the diseases they cause, often have different names.  For example, HIV is the virus that causes AIDS.  People often know the name of a disease, but not the name of the virus that causes it. There are different processes, and purposes, for naming viruses and diseases. Viruses are named based on their genetic structure to facilitate the development of diagnostic tests, vaccines and medicines. Virologists and the wider scientific community do this work, so viruses are named by the International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses (ICTV).   Diseases are named to enable discussion on disease prevention, spread, transmissibility, severity and treatment. Human disease preparedness and response is WHO’s role, so diseases are officially named by WHO in the International Classification of Diseases (ICD). ICTV announced “severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2)” as the name of the new virus on 11 February 2020.  This name was chosen because the virus is genetically related to the coronavirus responsible for the SARS outbreak of 2003.  While related, the two viruses are different.    WHO announced “COVID-19” as the name of this new disease on 11 February 2020, following guidelines previously developed with the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). WHO Director-General's remarks at the media on 11 February 2020 WHO Situation Report on 11 February 2020 WHO and ICTV were in communication about the naming of both the virus and the disease.   What name does WHO use for the virus? From a risk communications perspective, using the name SARS can have unintended consequences in terms of creating unnecessary fear for some populations, especially in Asia which was worst affected by the SARS outbreak in 2003.  For that reason and others, WHO has begun referring to the virus as “the virus responsible for COVID-19” or “the COVID-19 virus” when communicating with the public.  Neither of these designations are intended as replacements for the official name of the virus as agreed by the ICTV. Material published before the virus was officially named will not be updated unless necessary in order to avoid confusion.This article is a sharing in verbatim copy of the original “Naming the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) and the virus that causes it. https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/technical-guidance/naming-the-coronavirus-disease-(covid-2019)-and-the-virus-that-causes-it : World Health Organization; 2020. License CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 IGO .  This sharing aims to boost knowledge about this new disease called COVID 19.   Naming the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) and the virus that causes it Official names have been announced for the virus responsible for COVID-19 (previously known as “2019 novel coronavirus”) and the disease it causes.  The official names are: Disease  coronavirus disease  (COVID-19) Virus  severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2)   Why do the virus and the disease have different names?  Viruses, and the diseases they cause, often have different names.  For example, HIV is the virus that causes AIDS.  People often know the name of a disease, but not the name of the virus that causes it. There are different processes, and purposes, for naming viruses and diseases. Viruses are named based on their genetic structure to facilitate the development of diagnostic tests, vaccines and medicines. Virologists and the wider scientific community do this work, so viruses are named by the International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses (ICTV).   Diseases are named to enable discussion on disease prevention, spread, transmissibility, severity and treatment. Human disease preparedness and response is WHO’s role, so diseases are officially named by WHO in the International Classification of Diseases (ICD). ICTV announced “severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2)” as the name of the new virus on 11 February 2020.  This name was chosen because the virus is genetically related to the coronavirus responsible for the SARS outbreak of 2003.  While related, the two viruses are different.    WHO announced “COVID-19” as the name of this new disease on 11 February 2020, following guidelines previously developed with the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). WHO Director-General's remarks at the media on 11 February 2020 WHO Situation Report on 11 February 2020 WHO and ICTV were in communication about the naming of both the virus and the disease.   What name does WHO use for the virus? From a risk communications perspective, using the name SARS can have unintended consequences in terms of creating unnecessary fear for some populations, especially in Asia which was worst affected by the SARS outbreak in 2003.  For that reason and others, WHO has begun referring to the virus as “the virus responsible for COVID-19” or “the COVID-19 virus” when communicating with the public.  Neither of these designations are intended as replacements for the official name of the virus as agreed by the ICTV. Material published before the virus was officially named will not be updated unless necessary in order to avoid confusion

    Mucosal vaccines and technology

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    There is an urgent and unmet need to develop effective vaccines to reduce the global burden of infectious disease in both animals and humans, and in particular for the majority of pathogens that infect via mucosal sites. Here we summarise the impediments to developing mucosal vaccines and review the new and emerging technologies aimed at overcoming the lack of effective vaccine delivery systems that is the major obstacle to developing new mucosal vaccines

    World Report on Disability, Chapter 8: Work and Employment

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    Across the world, people with disabilities are entrepreneurs and selfemployed workers, farmers and factory workers, doctors and teachers, shop assistants and bus drivers, artists, and computer technicians (1). Almost all jobs can be performed by someone with a disability, and given the right environment, most people with disabilities can be productive. But as documented by several studies, both in developed and developing countries, working age persons with disabilities experience significantly lower employment rates and much higher unemployment rates than persons without disabilities (2–9). Lower rates of labour market participation are one of the important pathways through which disability may lead to poverty (10–15). In Article 27 the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) “recognizes the right of persons with disabilities to work, on an equal basis with others; this includes the opportunity to gain a living by work freely chosen or accepted in a labour market and work environment that is open, inclusive and accessible to persons with disabilities” (16). Furthermore, the CRPD prohibits all forms of employment discrimination, promotes access to vocational training, promotes opportunities for self-employment, and calls for reasonable accommodation in the workplace, among other provisions. A number of factors impact labour market outcomes for persons with disabilities including; productivity differentials; labour market imperfections related to discrimination and prejudice, and disincentives created by disability benefit systems (2, 17–19). To address labour market imperfections and encourage the employment of people with disabilities, many countries have laws prohibiting discrimination on the basis of disability. Enforcing antidiscrimination laws is expected to improve access to the formal economy and have wider social benefits. Many countries also have specific measures, for example quotas, aiming to increase employment opportunities for people with disabilities (20). Vocational rehabilitation and employment services – job training, counselling, job search assistance, and placement – can develop or restore the capabilities of people with disabilities to compete in the labour market and facilitate their inclusion in the labour market. At the heart of all this is changing attitudes in the workplace
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