[Podcast] World Asthma Day 2017: Universal access to asthma care is imperative for Agenda 2030


[Listen or download this audio podcast] [Watch webinar recording] This is the World Asthma Day 2017 Webinar recording. People with asthma can live normal lives if their asthma is managed properly. But low awareness, health systems challenges and inaccessible asthma care are among the major factors that contribute towards poor management of asthma, adding to avoidable emergency hospitalization at times too. [Listen or download this audio podcast]

[Webinar] World Asthma Day 2017: Manage asthma well and live life normally!


[Focus] Equal, accountable and effective partnerships can help deliver on Agenda 2030



[Podcast] Equal, accountable and effective partnerships are essential for Agenda 2030


[Listen or download this audio podcast] Ziad Abdel Samad, Executive Director, Arab NGO Network for Development (ANND) was one of the key participants at the "Breaking Grounds, Taking Roots: The Istanbul Principles @7", a potentially game-changing meeting of hundreds of civil society champions from around the world along with some government representatives among others, which happened recently in Bangkok, Thailand. [Listen or download this audio podcast]

[Call to register] Webinar in lead up to World Asthma Day

[Watch webinar recording] [Listen or download this audio podcast] Please be welcome to join us in this special webinar in lead up to 2017 World Asthma Day. People with asthma can live normal lives if their asthma is managed properly. But low awareness, health systems challenges and inaccessible asthma care are among the major factors that contribute towards poor management of asthma, adding to avoidable emergency hospitalization at times too.

[Focus] Do not leave migrants behind in Agenda 2030, says Eni Lestari


[Podcast] Do not leave migrants behind in Agenda 2030, says Chair of International Migrants' Alliance


[Listen or download this audio podcast] Eni Lestari is the Chairperson of International Migrants' Alliance, which is the first-ever global alliance of organizations of grassroots migrants, refugees and displaced peoples.   Eni Lestari was one of the key participants at the "Breaking Grounds, Taking Roots: The Istanbul Principles @7", a potentially game-changing meeting of hundreds of civil society champions from around the world along with some government representatives among others, which happened recently in Bangkok, Thailand. Eni Lestari was in conversation with CNS Managing Editor Shobha Shukla. [Listen or download this audio podcast]

[Podcast] #IndiaVsTB: Film stars and public health experts call upon ending TB stigma and catastrophic costs


[Listen or download this audio podcast] This CNS Podcast episode features 3 Indian film-stars Suniel Shetty, Sonu Sood and Suhail Khan, and Executive Director of International Union Against TB and Lung Disease (The Union) Jose Luis Castro, along with Deepti Chavan, who is not only a TB survivor but also champions the cause for improving TB care for all those in need. They were key speakers at the TB Free India Summit held on World Health Day 2017 in Dharamshala, Himachal Pradesh. [Listen or download this audio podcast]

[Podcast] Collective action can help accelerate the pace to #endTB, says Rhea Lobo at #IndiaVsTB


[Listen or download the audio podcast] Rhea Lobo, a noted international award winning film-maker and a freelance journalist, is also a TB survivor. She shared her insights on how to accelerate the pace to end TB at the potentially-game changing inter-sectoral meet, TB Free India Summit  (#IndiaVsTB) at Dharamshala, Himachal Pradesh, on World Health Day 2017 [Listen or download the audio podcast].

Indian HIV doctors pay tribute to untimely death of noted HIV scientist Dr Mark Wainberg

Pioneering Canadian HIV researcher Dr Mark Wainberg, died of drowning in Bal Harbour, Florida, USA, at the age of 71 years. Asthma attack took away this top HIV scientist. "His family was with him, and his son tried to rescue him, was able to locate Dr. Wainberg, and began to swim back to shore with him. He was transported to the hospital in Miami, where he was pronounced dead" shared Dr Ishwar Gilada, President of AIDS Society of India (ASI).

Breaking the news to children living with HIV

Catherine Mwauyakufa, CNS Correspondent, Zimbabwe
(First published in Manica Post)
Parents and guardians with children on anti retroviral therapy (ART) have a lot to consider before initiating them on life-long medication. Medication for diabetes mellitus (DM) is easily explained to a child as compared to those on ARVs. Normally, a child with diabetes will understand the condition better as compared to a child who is HIV positive and has to take ARVs for life.

Trading indifference on the triggers of TB is amplifying the burden globally

Roger Paul Kamugasha, CNS Correspondent, Uganda
As we applaud the effort of global players in the fight against TB for the immense resources invested to end TB by 2030, let me, as a TB activist, strongly grieve because of the persistent and pseudo ignorance exhibited  by our global planners. This year’s Global Theme is “Unite to End TB” with the slogan of “Find the Missing Patients with TB”. I find these appropriate and concur with the phrasing. It is in black and white that about 9 million people get TB every year around the world and nearly 2 million deaths are caused by TB alone. This means with every passing minute, 3 persons die of TB and it is  also the leading killer among HIV infected people, responsible for the 30% deaths of HIV positive people.

Inter-sectoral and well-coordinated battle to #endTB is imperative to deliver on Agenda 2030

[हिंदी] Growing political commitment of governments globally to #endTB is indeed welcoming but governments need to walk the talk too to #endTB and deliver on promises of integrated sustainable development by 2030.

India to finalise a national strategy plan to end TB

Aarti Dhar, CNS Correspondent, India
India will shortly finalise a national strategy to end tuberculosis (TB) in the country by 2025; this was announced by the Union Health and Family Welfare Minister J.P. Nadda to mark the International TB Day on March 24. The 'daily regimen' of TB drugs, which has been found to be more effective than intermittent treatment, will also be rolled out across the country this year. As of now, this regimen is being implemented in only five states.

The struggle against TB continues

Clarity Sibanda, CNS Correspondent, Zimbabwe
Zimbabwe has become the latest, and one of the few countries, in the region to roll out the latest TB drug called Delamanid, to treat difficult case of multi drug resistant (MDR) and extensively drug resistant (XDR) TB. The new TB treatment program will see patients taking one drug per day as opposed to between 12 and 16 tablets. The Minister of Health and Child Care, Dr David Parirenyatwa said the introduction of the new drug is anticipated to help the country improve cure rates.

"Storms make trees take deeper roots": Insights of a cancer survivor with indomitable spirit

Shobha Shukla, CNS (Citizen News Service)
- CNS Special on World Health Day 2017 -
"One night, in the summer of 2013, I felt a twitch in my breast. It was something like if you hurt your toenail. Having a family history of cancer, I did not want to take any chance, and promptly saw my doctor the very next day. He reassured me that there was nothing to worry, more so because there was no lump."

[Podcast] Accountability of all development actors will strength response-ability


[Watch video] [Listen or download podcast] Azra Saeed from Roots for Equity in Pakistan is also the Chair of International Women's Alliance, a global network of grassroots women. She spoke with CNS Managing Editor Shobha Shukla at the "Breaking Grounds, Taking Roots: Istanbul Principles @7" meeting organized by CSO Partnership for Development Effectiveness (CPDE) [Watch video] [Listen or download podcast].

[Focus] Accountability of all development actors will strength response-ability



Breaking Ground, Taking Roots: Can Istanbul Principles make SDGs a transformative agenda?

A potentially game-changer meet opened in Bangkok on 30th March 2017 to review the progress made on increasing effectiveness and accountability of civil society organisations (CSOs) since adoption of Istanbul Principles seven years back and to brainstorm how can Istanbul Principles make Agenda 2030 a transformative one.

[Podcast] Justin Kilcullen calls for increasing effectiveness and accountability for all development actors to help achieve SDGs


[Watch video interview] [Listen or download audio podcast] Justin Kilcullen, European Representative to the CSO Partnership for Development Effectiveness (CPDE) and Chair of Social Justice Ireland was in conversation with CNS Managing Editor Shobha Shukla at the "Breaking Grounds, Taking Roots: Istanbul Principles @7" meeting organized by CPDE and partners. Justin also represents the Irish NGOs in CPDE framework.  Justin speaks about how Istanbul Principles have been helpful in increasing effectiveness and accountability within the civil society in past seven years since their adoption, and shares some challenges too. He believes that Istanbul Principles can truly make Agenda 2030 a transformative agenda. [Watch video interview] [Listen or download audio podcast]

[Focus] Can Istanbul Principles help in increasing effectiveness and accountability?



North-South perspectives on Istanbul Principles and Agenda 2030 for sustainable development

Shobha Shukla, CNS (Citizen News Service)
The eight Istanbul Principles, adopted in 2010 by over two hundred civil society organisations (CSOs) from 82 countries, constitute a statement of common values and approaches to guide CSOs' work.

Concerted action is needed to end TB by 2030

Urvashi Prasad, CNS Correspondent, India
There are 9.6 million new cases of TB and 1.5 million deaths due to it, annually. Also, an estimated 500,000 people develop multi-drug resistant TB (MDR-TB) every year. As highlighted by Paul Jensen, Director of Policy and Strategy, International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease (The Union), in a webinar organized by CNS, TB, despite being fully curable, kills more people than any other infectious disease in the world.

Accelerating efforts to end TB by 2030

Francis Okoye, CNS Correspondent, Nigeria
In a special webinar organized by Citizen News Service (CNS), it was  reiterated that governments of more than 190 countries, by adopting the sustainable development goals (SDGS) at UN General Assembly in Sept 2015, have globally committed to end TB by 2030. This commitment to end TB is in line with the WHO End TB strategy, which was adopted by World Health Assembly in 2014.

World TB Day 2017: Getting closer to the promise

Alice Sagwidza Tembe, CNS Correspondent, Swaziland
Swaziland joined the world in commemorating the World TB Day this March 2017. In so doing, many stakeholders from both health and non-health sectors, as well as private and public sector, gathered in different regions, charging forward with renewed energy and commitment towards stopping TB. As Dr Mario Raviglione, Director, Global TB Programme of the World Health Organization (WHO) shared in a webinar organised by CNS, this is a critical time where all players need to come to the table.

SDGs should not be the icing on business-as-usual 'cake'

Shobha Shukla, CNS (Citizen News Service)
The UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) is convening the 4th session of the Asia-Pacific Forum on Sustainable Development (APFSD 2017) from 29 to 31 March 2017, in Bangkok, Thailand. The APFSD is expected to define a regional roadmap to support member States' implementation of the 2030 Agenda over the next 15 years.

'Finish line' not in sight: Struggle intensifies for sustainable development of all

The governments of over 190 countries promised to deliver on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030 at the United Nations (UN) General Assembly in September 2015. But progress to keep these promises, has been, at best, patchy. Several community leaders from Asia Pacific region who were actively participating in 2017 Asia Pacific Civil Society Forum on Sustainable Development (CSO Forum of APFSD) in Bangkok, Thailand, feel that business as usual cannot continue if we are truly committed to translate SDGs into development justice for all.

TB treatment and cure: Can faith help?

Dr Richa Sharma, CNS Correspondent, India
“We have tried to do everything but there has been no improvement. My husband had to take so many medicines for so many months, and yet there was no relief. We finally gave up and went to a faith healer in our village who did some animal sacrifices and put some ash on his forehead. We also went to this famous temple and got pooja done. But even that did not work, says Saroj, a 55 year old woman whose husband has been sick on and off for several years.

Indian network of HIV experts honour Dr Gallo for his contribution to AIDS virus discovery

Because Nobel prize had forgotten to acknowledge one of the three top scientists who should have shared the credit for AIDS virus discovery, the honour conferred upon Dr Robert Gallo by AIDS Society of India (ASI), India's national network of HIV medical experts, becomes so much more important. In 1984, research groups led by Dr Gallo, Dr Luc Montagnier at the Pasteur Institute in Paris, and Dr Jay Levy at the University of California, San Francisco, all identified a retrovirus as the cause of AIDS. The AIDS Society of India (ASI) conferred upon the prestigious ASI Lifetime Achievement Award to Dr Robert Charles Gallo in recognition of his pioneering role in advancing pathbreaking HIV science over the decades.

Faith alone cannot cure TB

Alice Sagwidza Tembe, CNS Correspondent, Swaziland
“All my life, I prayed to God and he answered my prayers. I prayed for a job and I got it, I prayed for a husband and he gave me. When we were struggling to have children, I prayed and fasted for two years and now I have three healthy children……even now I will pray that God cures us.” These were the words of Zanele Dlamini (Name changed), a recently widowed 36 year old female from Sidvokodvo, some 60 km from the capital Mbabane in Swaziland. Zanele was diagnosed with multi-drug resistant TB (MDR-TB) in September 2016, she is also HIV positive. Her husband Muzi (Name changed) succumbed to the same ailments in mid-January this year.

[Podcast] Multi-sectoral response is crucial to accelerate progress to #endTB by 2030


[Watch YouTube recording] [Click here to listen or download this audio podcast] This is the webinar recording in lead up to 2017 World TB Day. Governments of more than 190 countries globally have committed to end TB by 2030 by adopting the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) at UN General Assembly in September 2015. This commitment to end TB is in line with the WHO End TB Strategy which was adopted by World Health Assembly in 2014. [Click here to listen or download this audio podcast]

[Webinar] World TB Day 2017: Unite to #endTB



Using faith to not just fight TB but many other diseases as well

Josephine Chinele, CNS Correspondent, Malawi
Motivational talks could move people and change their behaviour. But the use of their faith authority will move them more. This is what the experts have resorted to in order to fight against TB across the world. Experts who made presentations at a webinar hosted by Citizen News Service (CNS) indicate that faith leaders can play a crucial role in fighting against diseases such as TB.

Healers abuse people’s faith

Catherine Mwauyakufa, CNS Correspondent, Zimbabwe
(First published in Manica Post)
Acceptance of any condition is the first step to recovery. Denial is fatal. Acceptance is a process, and not an event. So acceptance of any condition is of importance to getting well. Not everyone has to disclose publicly, but disclosing to a loved one, or a buddy, helps. Everyone needs a medic buddy to help adhere to treatment. My spouse is my medic buddy who reminds me to take my medication.

Using faith to fight TB

Francis Okoye, CNS Correspondent, Nigeria
In a webinar organized by CNS, titled ‘Does faith help in fighting TB?’, experts from various sectors presented their views. One of the experts, Jody Boffa, a community based researcher and epidemiologist at Desmond Tutu TB centre, Stellenbosh University, Cape Town, South Africa, said that as a strong Christian and with her engagement with communities, she realized the  important role faith plays in TB care and control.

Faith leaders can help fight TB

Locadia Mavhudzi, CNS Correspondent, Zimbabwe
TB has been identified as a major threat to global health security. In this regard it is imperative to take an inclusive approach towards its prevention, treatment, care and support. Research has proved that one's faith really help in fighting against the disease. The Seventh Day Adventist Church wellness programme in the Midlands province in Zimbabwe has gone a long way in promoting care and control of HIV and TB. The high burden of TB and HIV in mining townships across the province has prompted the church to provide a safe haven for care and support amongst the infected population.

Ending TB is going to be hard but "hard is not impossible"

[Watch video interview] [Listen or download the podcast] [हिंदी] Wisdom of Nelson Mandela, "It always seems impossible until it's done", has only deepened in relevance and context when we review the fight against tuberculosis (TB), a curable disease which continues to be one of the top ten causes of death globally.

Does faith help in fighting TB?

Dr P S Sarma, CNS Correspondent, India
Human beings live in the world of hope–hope for a better tomorrow. This hope depends upon, and is generated from faith- faith in oneself, faith in the fellow beings and, above all, faith in God. Faith is a principle of action and power. Whenever we work for a worthy goal, we exercise faith.All over the world, efforts are being made to combat TB— an infectious disease that kills 2 persons every 3 minutes.

[Call to register] Webinar in lead up to World TB Day 2017: Unite to #endTB

[Watch webinar recording] [Listen or download podcast]
Welcome to this special webinar in lead up to 2017 World TB Day. Governments of more than 190 countries globally have committed to end TB by 2030 by adopting the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) at UN General Assembly in September 2015. This commitment to end TB is in line with the WHO End TB Strategy which was adopted by World Health Assembly in 2014.

India to involve faith leaders in TB programme

Aarti Dhar, CNS Correspondent, India
(First published in theindiasaga.com)
Inspired by the role of faith-based leaders in eliminating polio, the Indian government is now all set to involve religious institutions in reaching out to people for TB services. Beginning this month, the International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Diseases (The Union) will start training the trainers from the Muslim community who, along with volunteers, will help in identifying cases and disseminating information about the disease.

[International Women's Day special] Emotional support is crucial for TB patients

Shobha Shukla, CNS (Citizen News Service)
(To mark International Women's Day 2017, CNS presents an exclusive story of courage and inspirtion, based upon an interview with TB survivor and activist Prabha Mahesh) 
"I can never forget that day. It is etched in my mind forever. I came back from the laboratory, totally devastated and in tears. I had never ever thought even in the wildest of my dreams that a person like me could contract TB. But that was what my reports confirmed.

[Podcast] Having fought TB for over 30 years, Dr KK Chopra shares insights on ending TB by 2030


[Listen or download the audio podcast] [Watch the video interview] Having invested over 30 years in fight against TB, Dr KK Chopra who is the present Director of New Delhi TB Centre in India's capital, shares key insights on how to accelerate the battle to #endTB by 2030. Reflecting on the past decades, he shares key game-changing pivots that propelled the fight against TB and some things that could have done better. [Listen or download the audio podcast] [Watch the video interview]

[Focus] No excuse not to accelerate the pace to #endTB by 2030


[Podcast] Role of faith in helping accelerate pace to #endTB by 2030


[Listen or download this audio podcast] This is the recording of a special webinar in lead up to World TB Day 2017 where experts shared experiences on the role of faith in the fight against TB, and explored opportunities of how faith can help to expedite efforts to #endTB by 2030. [Listen or download this audio podcast]

[Webinar] Does faith help in fighting TB?


[Podcast] Faith has a pivotal role in road to recovery, but blind faith doesn't work! cautions Catherine Mwauyakufa


[Listen or download this podcast]
Catherine Mwauyakufa is an award-winning journalist and CNS Correspondent from Zimbabwe as well. She is among CNS Fellow awardees too. She shared her personal experience of role of faith in caring for the HIV affected communities and cautions against blind faith while acknowledging the pivotal role faith can play in "road to recovery" as well. Listen to her experience here (or download the podcast). This audio podcast was broadcasted on a webinar on 28th February 2017 on "Does faith help in fighting TB?"
[Listen or download this podcast]

Quit tobacco, control cancer

Chhatra Karki, CNS Correspondent, Nepal
It has been seen that most of the cancer patients in Nepal visit the hospital only when complexities increase and the disease enters into its final stage. According to the Department of Health of Nepal, about 80% of cancer patients consult a doctor for treatment when the disease is in an advanced stage. Getting regular health checkups and consulting the physician early on, is not usual for the Nepalese. This ensuing delay in diagnosis and treatment results in high treatment costs and low chances of recovery.

[Call for application] CNS Health Fellowship Programme 2017-2018

[Click here to apply] CNS is pleased to announce that it is currently accepting applications for new Fellows for its CNS Health Fellowship Programme 2017-2018. This programme offers mentorship, peer support, networking opportunities and technical assistance on global health reporting. Last date to apply is extended till Sunday, 30th April 2017 (5pm Geneva time). To learn more about CNS Health Fellows of previous years, click here.

[Call to register] Webinar: Does faith help in fighting TB?

[Watch webinar recording] [Listen or download audio podcast] Be welcome to register for this exclusive webinar in lead up to World TB Day 2017 where experts will share experiences on the role of faith in the fight against TB, and explore opportunities of how faith can help to expedite efforts to #endTB by 2030.

NOTA is not a 'paper tiger' but un-utilized policy to strengthen democracy

[हिंदी] Before Supreme Court order to the Election Commission of India to include NOTA (None Of The Above) button on electronic voting machines (EVMs) citizens who did not want to vote for any candidate had hardly any choice. Using NOTA was not an easy or hassle-free option earlier.

Renewing the fight against cancer

Josephine Chinele, CNS Correspondent, Malawi
For many February is a month of love, as Valentine’s Day is celebrated. But 27 year old Elisa, based in Lilongwe, remembers this month because of her father who died of cancer. “Of course, World Cancer Day is commemorated on 4th of February every year. But I feel that the disease should be remembered all the time and efforts to control it intensified and renewed every year,” she says.

[Podcast] Do not put TB hotspots on blindspot, warns Dr Chitra Chandrashekar


[Listen or dowload this audio podcast] Dr Chitra Chandrashekar, recipient of prestigious Professor OA Sarma Oration Award 2016 spoke with Shobha Shukla, Managing Editor of CNS (Citizen News Service).  She shared her study findings that got her the coveted recognition. Preventing TB from spreading any further is indeed a compelling public health imperative. TB hotspots cannot be on blindspots. [Listen or dowload this audio podcast] [Watch video]

[Focus] "We must bequeath good air to our next generation..."



We cannot run away from cancer, we have to fight it

Alice Sagwidza-Tembe, CNS Correspondent, Swaziland
On September 25th 2015, countries adopted a set of 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure prosperity for all, as part of a new sustainable development agenda. Each goal has specific targets to be achieved over the next 15 years. For the goals to be reached, everyone needs to do their part: governments, the private sector, civil society and ordinary people.

Smoking?? Think many times!

Clarity Sibanda, CNS Correspondent, Zimbabwe
The International Cancer Day 2017 (4th February) comes at a time when the death rate due to the disease is increasing, notwithstanding the research going on to diagnose and cure more people. Several progressive governments are calling for nicotine tar lovers to quit smoking, which accounts for more than 20% of all cancer deaths worldwide.

WHO’s new guide for cancer focuses on early detection and treatment

Aarti Dhar, CNS Correspondent, India
(First published in theIndiasaga.com)
Latest cancer data released by the World Health Organisation (WHO) says that 8.8 million people died from cancer in 2015, with about 70% of deaths occurring in low and middle-income countries. One thing common in these deaths is that the disease was diagnosed too late, making the chances of survival slim. Even in countries with optimal health systems and services, many cancer cases are diagnosed at an advanced stage, when they are harder to treat successfully.

We must bequeath good air to our next generation...

Shobha Shukla, CNS (Citizen News Service)
Shobha Shukla, CNS (L), Dr Chitra Chandrashekar (R)
[audio podcast] [video] So said award-winning Dr Chitra Chandrashekar, Director of  Dr Iravatham’s Clinical Laboratory, Hyderabad. I met her in Mumbai during NAPCON 2016 and was struck by her modesty and her passion for working in the field of TB. Chitra spoke with CNS (Citizen News Service) about her study titled 'Host susceptibility to Mycobacteria and Transmission dynamics', related to the transmission dynamics of TB, which won her the prestigious Professor OA Sarma Oration Award at NAPCON 2016.

Towards getting rid of cancer

Francis Okoye, CNS Correspondent, Nigeria
Taking place under the slogan ‘We can. I can’, World Cancer Day 2017 explores how we can all work together—collectively and as individuals— to reduce the global burden of cancer. Just as cancer affects everyone in different ways, all people have the power to take action to reduce the devastating impact that cancer has on individuals, families, communities and the country as a whole.

Are cancer deaths declining fast enough to meet SDGs by 2030?

In a webinar (recording, podcast) experts raised key concerns around cancer deaths not declining fast enough in order to keep the governments' commitments of reducing cancer deaths (and of other non-communicable diseases or NCDs) by one-third by 2030.