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After the summer of 2010, “Business as Usual”-approaches to address the challenge posed by global warming seem no longer in vogue. Even some self-proclaimed ‘sceptical environmentalists’ are having a change of heart lately. By the way, good to see that Lomborg proposes to spend 100 billion a year on global health care. Rumour has it that the Giving Pledge even aims at 600 billion to tackle global poverty issues.
We are afraid Glenn Beck, Ron Paul and other Tea Party heavyweights (as well as their sponsors who are lurking in the background) still couldn’t care less. And like it or not, they frame at least part of the debate internationally. On the positive side, the scenes of ecological disaster are making some influential global health voices have second thoughts about their carbon footprint. We get the hint, and plan to go by bus to the Montreux Symposium, with our Emerging voices essay competition winners!
Finally, from the Melbourne UN/NGO summit came some disturbing news: it appears that maternal health was not exactly a big item in the final outcome document…
Enjoy your reading.
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1. Lancet – Health systems strengthening: current and future activities
In an early online Lancet Comment, Sundewall and colleagues agree there is a consensus now on the importance of strong health systems, but they argue that some HSS areas require more attention, if the current momentum is to be sustained.
National and International Health and Social Financing
2. Christian science monitor (Opinion with Kouchner and Charles Michel) – Small global taxes would make a big difference for world’s ‘bottom billion’
Bernard Kouchner, Katsuya Okada, Charles Michel; http://bit.ly/bfTHGp
As long as we don’t have a new government in
3. HP&P – Expanding health insurance coverage in vulnerable groups: a systematic review of options
Qingyue Meng, Beibei Yuan, Liying Jia, Jian Wang, Baorong Yu, Jun Gao and Paul Garner; http://heapol.oxfordjournals.org/cgi/content/abstract/czq038
Meng et al. summarize the options for expanding health insurance coverage, based on a literature search. They arrived at 6 strategies: changing eligibility criteria of health insurance, increasing public awareness, making the premium more affordable, innovative enrolment strategies, improving health care delivery, and improving management and organization of the insurance schemes. The authors reckon their overview could help policy makers in countries expanding coverage.
4. You don’t have to be rich
Julian Le Grand comes up with a very interesting suggestion in a Guardian opinion piece, linking philanthropy, “nudging” and taxes.
5. Afriquejet – Global financial crisis may hamper African health development
In a meeting in
Elsewhere, the UNAIDS chief expressed his concern that commitments to global HIV/AIDS programs seem to be faltering for the first time in 15 years.
6. KFF – Going after Big Pharma won’t improve
In a Wall Street Journal opinion piece, Van Gelder argued that the battle against patent rights will only make
7. Plos Medicine – Quantifying the Impoverishing Effects of Purchasing Medicines: A Cross-Country Comparison of the Affordability of Medicines in the Developing World
Laurens M. Niëns, Alexandra Cameron, Ellen Van de Poel, Margaret Ewen, Werner B. F. Brouwer, Richard Laing; http://www.plosmedicine.org/article/info:doi/10.1371/journal.pmed.1000333#abstract2
Niëns et al. estimate the impoverishing effects of four medicines in 16 LMICs using a metric of affordability and show that medicine purchases could impoverish large numbers of people.
8. KFF – Report Finds Some Donated Malaria Drugs Are Being Stolen, Resold In
In another Wall Street Journal opinion piece, Roger Bate writes about
The Economist also has an interesting piece on fake drugs this week, and on the technology to do something about it.
9. Lancet –
steps up efforts to boost male circumcision Uganda
Wairagala Wakabi ;
10. Monkeypox rising in wake of smallpox eradication
Lynne Peeples http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE67U4RH20100831
Thirty years after the eradication of smallpox, the monkeypox virus is on the rise.