No excuse not to end the acute stage of pandemic globally

[हिंदी] Is it not shocking that after more than two years into the pandemic (when we know how to protect ourselves from getting infected, and have had vaccines for more than a year now), by far the highest-ever number of corona virus infections in a single week were reported in the second week of January 2022? This is an unacceptable failure to save lives and unnecessary human suffering.

Failing on the basics: Are we able to #BreakTheChain of infection transmission?

[हिंदी] The year 2022 began on a dismal note, with its first week reporting the highest-ever number of COVID-19 cases in a week globally. Since the pandemic began in December 2019, the reported number of people who contracted the virus has been over 306 million and 5.5 million people have died due to it worldwide. The actual numbers could be much higher, as many infections and deaths are likely to have gone underreported.

Is One Health approach the gateway towards pandemic preparedness?

[हिंदी] Covid pandemic is a grim reminder of what can go wrong when we do not work with an integrated “One Health” approach to human health, animal health, food system and climate. The critical link between these sectors, has only deepened over the years. But will our public health approach pass the litmus test of effective collaboration with other health and non-health sectors? Preventing future pandemics start with recognising links between human health, animal health, food system and climate, and ensuring our health response is socially just and ecologically sustainable.

Think twice: Can we deliver on #HealthForAll without saving lives from viral hepatitis?

[हिंदी] Despite over 350 million people living with hepatitis B and C virus globally, and 3 persons dying every minute, much-needed efforts are yet to be on-track to end viral hepatitis in next 108 months (by 2030) as promised by heads of all countries in UN General Assembly (by adopting the Sustainable Development Goals). More importantly, during the Covid pandemic, efforts to prevent and save lives from viral hepatitis had taken a backseat - which is risking losing the gains made earlier in addressing viral hepatitis across the world.

Capitalizing on the pandemic: Profiteering from human misery must be stopped

International Migrants Day 2021 
special article by
Panudda BoonpalaSarah KnibbsJulien Garsany
photo courtesy: ILO
Migrant workers have made huge changes to their lives and work to adapt to COVID-19. So too have the human traffickers that prey on them.

Stopping antimicrobial resistance is the bedrock for advancing universal health coverage

Universal Health Coverage (UHC) Day is 12 December

[हिंदी] Stopping antimicrobial resistance by promoting infection prevention, responsible and appropriate use of antimicrobial medicines in human health, livestock and food systems, is the bedrock for promoting universal health coverage. Failing this, the absence of efficacious antimicrobials will effectively return the world to the pre-antibiotic era before the 1920s when lives were lost at a far greater rate due to infection.

Leaders of cities in Asia Pacific commit for united local actions to meet global health goals

#EndTobacco is an essential part of the bedrock for Universal Health Coverage

[हिंदी] Can we deliver on the promise of health for all unless we fix the gaping and widening punctures that are causing epidemic-proportion of preventable diseases and untimely deaths? No one needs to suffer from preventable illnesses or die from curable diseases. Tobacco use kills over 8 million people worldwide every year. While ‘Big Tobacco’ industries become richer, it is the governments and the people worldwide who are not only dealing with mountainous health crises but also becoming more vulnerable to fritter away whatever progress they have been able to make towards the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and targets.

Antimicrobial resistance is threatening global health security

When medicines become resistant, even curable diseases are at risk of becoming incurable

Antimicrobial resistance occurs when microbes such as bacteria, viruses, fungi, and parasites no longer respond to medicines. This makes common infections harder to treat and increases the risk of disease spread, severe illness and death. That is why India and other countries worldwide are observing 18-24 November as World Antimicrobial Awareness Week.

When people with HIV can live normal lives then why 680,000 AIDS deaths in 2020?

[हिंदी] When we know how to prevent HIV transmission, and how to keep every person living with HIV healthy, then how can one fathom deaths of at least 680,000 people due to AIDS-related illnesses in 2020 worldwide? And how can one explain, at least 1.5 million new HIV infections occurring globally in 2020?

Can we afford to lose effective drugs?

(published in The Bangkok Post, Thailand | 22 November 2021)

"Antimicrobial resistance is undermining a century of progress in medicine - infections that were previously treatable and curable with drugs, are becoming (or at risk of becoming) incurable" said  Thomas Joseph, head of World Health Organization (WHO)’s Antimicrobial Stewardship and Awareness.

What's the link? Food, human health, livestock, environment, and antimicrobial resistance

Medicines which aim to relieve pain and suffering, may cure us of diseases and avert untimely deaths, are at increasing risk of becoming ineffective against disease-causing microbes. Antimicrobial resistance occurs when microbes such as bacteria, viruses, fungi, and parasites no longer respond to medicines. This makes common infections harder to treat, more expensive to treat, more difficult to treat, and increases the risk of disease spread, severe illness and death.

Will new scientific breakthroughs spur the #endTB efforts?

Is it not a paradox if a preventable, diagnosable, treatable, and curable disease becomes a top killer? Till Covid-19 struck our world, Tuberculosis (TB) - a disease that can be prevented, diagnosed and treated - was the most deadly infectious disease worldwide. Covid-19 pandemic has also adversely impacted the fight against TB, as well as other diseases. Not surprisingly, the latest Global TB Report 2021 paints a grim picture of the TB disease burden, with the Covid-19 pandemic acting spoilsport and further jeopardising the progress on all fronts of TB prevention, diagnosis, treatment, care and control.

Prioritising tobacco control amidst crisis, Myanmar adopts plain packaging

[हिंदी] Myanmar has adopted standardised packaging (or plain packaging) of all tobacco products. Plain packaging is among the scientifically-backed tobacco control measures which are also enshrined in the global tobacco treaty (formally called the World Health Organization Framework Convention on Tobacco Control or WHO FCTC). Over 180 countries will meet next month at the Conference of the Parties to the WHO FCTC.