Will India's 1 billion vaccination-dose-milestone be catalytic for vaccinating all?

[हिंदी] On 21 October 2021, India crossed its milestone of administering over 1 billion (100 crores) doses within 278 days since it began the vaccination rollout (on 16th January 2021). The World Health Organization (WHO) calls upon all countries to ensure that at least 70% of their population must be fully vaccinated by June 2022. India aims to cross 70% goalpost by end of this year - which is indeed a welcome commitment. Currently, over 30% of India's population is fully vaccinated. As vaccination began in January 2021, it is really a compelling public health priority for India to fully vaccinate over 70% of population at the earliest, before protection may begin to decline for some of those who got the jab first.

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.

[video] Myanmar adopts plain packaging for tobacco products

Global lung health meet opens with top three science announcements

The global lung health conference opened with not one but at least three major scientific announcements. The 52nd Union World Conference on Lung Health was marked with the announcement of three major scientific developments that can potentially impact the global response to tuberculosis (TB), the world's second deadliest infectious disease after Covid-19.

What if TB, HIV medicines stop working? Experts unite against drug resistance

[हिंदी] One year and 10 months ago when first case of corona virus was reported in Wuhan, China, entire world was terrified because no one knew if we have any medicine that will work against it. Possibly our worst fears came true and we witnessed the horrendous impact of the pandemic. One silver lining in dark Covid cloud is the hard-taught lesson to value the medicines we have, which try to cure and heal us from range of illnesses. We cannot afford to lose these lifesaving medicines. One major threat because of which medicines stop working against bugs that make us ill is Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR).

Malaria vaccine: Vital addition to toolkit for preventing malaria but no magic bullet

Rights-based access to comprehensive health services remains centrestage

[हिंदी] It is indeed a breakthrough scientific achievement that we now have the first-ever and only malaria vaccine to prevent malaria in children. This is an important (and long-awaited) addition to existing range of scientifically proven effective methods to prevent malaria. While we celebrate this moment of yet another milestone scientific feat we must remind ourselves that this new and only vaccine is a complementary malaria control tool which needs to be added to the already proven measures for malaria prevention.

Science must guide India, UK: Stoking vaccine nationalism will fail us all

One of the seven sins we should not commit as warned by Mahatma Gandhi, is "science without humanity". But are we conscious enough to ensure that the global fight against Covid is mindful of Gandhi ji’s message? 

World Lung Day | Think twice, it is not another day in paradise: Air is deadlier than we thought it is!

[हिंदी] While we observe World Lung Day, let us also pay heed to the latest policy guidelines on one of the major preventable risk factors of deadliest of lung diseases: air pollution. The World Health Organization (WHO) has released its latest Air Quality Guidelines that after rigorous scientific review has lowered the maximum upper limit of six top deadly air pollutants. After thorough scientific analysis of all data emerging from around the world, the latest WHO Air Quality Guidelines has slashed the maximum upper cap on each of these deadly pollutants, compared to the maximum limit set 16 years ago (as per the 2005 WHO Air Quality Guidelines).

UK's decision to consider vaccinated Indians as 'unvaccinated' stinks of apartheid, lacks scientific merit

Recent decision of the United Kingdom (UK) to consider fully vaccinated Indians along with some other nationalities as 'unvaccinated' lacks scientific merit and instead stinks of white supremacy and apartheid era. It is important to mention that 90% of the vaccines rolled out in India are Covishield. Covishield vaccine, is Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine, whose research was done by UK based agencies but this vaccine under the name of 'Covishield' is being made in India and exported globally by Serum Institute of India. Serum Institute of India is also the world's largest vaccine manufacturer. Will UK also consider those vaccinated with Oxford AstraZeneca in its own nation as 'unvaccinated'?

Will global charter help accelerate action on NCDs to prevent untimely deaths?

A report released recently by NCD Alliance during the Annual Global Week for Action on Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs), calls for integration of NCDs prevention and care into global health initiatives and universal health coverage.

Step up the pace globally if universal vaccination could lead us out of the pandemic

[हिंदी] The Covid pandemic has hard drilled the lesson why health and social security of each one of us is inter-dependent on health and social security of one another. But do we see more equity (or inequity) in the Covid response, such as the rollout of the vaccination worldwide? Inequitable distribution of vaccine, diagnostics, oxygen, personnel protective equipment, and other necessary essential tools have been plaguing the Covid response due to which we are unable to fully break the chain of infection transmission by prevention measures, and reduce severity of the disease for those who get infected.

Will inclusion and accountability take centrestage at the Generation Equality Forum?

Undoubtedly, the Generation Equality Forum which took place earlier this year, was a milestone to galvanize US$ 40 billion financial commitments for gender equality and human rights worldwide. This is the largest amount of investment to advance gender equality and women’s rights ever. It also launched a 5-year action journey (till 2026) "to achieve irreversible progress towards gender equality, founded on a series of concrete, ambitious and transformative actions, as well as ambitious policy and programme commitments from governments, philanthropy, civil society, youth organizations and the private sector."