Global Health

Global Health
10:50 am
Tue October 18, 2011

Queen of England bestows honor on PATH’s gizmo guy

Michael Free, at right, has been made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire.
PATH

The Queen of England has bestowed an exalted honor on PATH’s top gizmo guy.

Michael Free, chief of technology for PATH, has been made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire in recognition of his team’s many inventions and innovative approaches aimed at helping solve health problems in the developing world. It’s not quite as prestigious as a Knighthood but better than a sharp poke in the helmet.

Read more on Humanosphere.

Global Health
2:54 pm
Wed October 12, 2011

Homeless campout at Gates Foundation, want cash

Danial Emslie unfurls plastic for his bed as homeless people and advocates prepare to sleep in front of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation on Tuesday in Seattle.
Joshua Trujillo Seattlepi.com

“Charity begins at home” and hundreds of people in Seattle are now looking at a wet, cold winter with no place to sleep.

That’s what homelessness advocate Jarvis Capucion said to me when I asked him why protesters decided to camp outside the Seattle campus of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation this week.

“Jimmy Buffett’s 'Singing for Change' project gave us $10,000 a few months ago,” said Capucion. “I want to know why Warren Buffett and Bill Gates can’t do the same.”

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Global Health
1:40 pm
Tue October 11, 2011

Global tuberculosis cases drop for first time

A woman, left, cuts the hair of a fellow tuberculosis patient at a clinic in the township of Khayelitsha, on the outskirts of Cape Town, South Africa, in March.

Schalk van Zuydam AP

Originally published on Tue October 11, 2011 11:33 am

Worldwide tuberculosis cases are declining annually for the first time, according to a report just out from the World Health Organization. Deaths from the disease have also sunk to the lowest level in a decade.

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Humanosphere
12:21 pm
Tue October 11, 2011

Study: Gates-backed project prevented 100,000 HIV infections in India

Woman with AIDS in hospital in India.
John Isaac World Bank

A $258 million initiative sponsored by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation aimed at preventing AIDS in India appears to have paid off overall, researchers say, resulting in more than 100,000 fewer new HIV infections over five years.

Many aren’t quite ready to judge this project, Avahan, a success, however.

Read more on Humanosphere.

Global Health
12:25 pm
Mon October 3, 2011

How the ‘Battle in Seattle’ led to a global health epicenter

So what do the WTO riots and globalization have to do with global health? 'Lots,' says geographer Matt Sparke.
djbones Flickr

How did Seattle get to be a world epicenter for global health?

Most people would say that it’s due to the simple fact that the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is here ... but Matt Sparke would say it’s more complicated than that.

Read more on Humanosphere.

Global Health
2:30 pm
Tue September 27, 2011

Gates announces new push to conquer deadly rotavirus

Rotavirus vaccine given to child in Sudan
Doune Porter GAVI

It kills anywhere from a quarter-million to half-a-million kids every year and is one of the world’s leading causes of child mortality.

But it wasn’t too long ago hardly anybody had even heard of it: Rotavirus. It is the killer bug that set off Bill Gates and gave direction to his philanthropy. Now his foundation is launching a major new global jab against rotavirus and another big killer of young children, pneumococcal disease.

Humanosphere
9:32 am
Wed September 21, 2011

Does global health have to first focus on poverty?

Bill Clinton embraces Paul Farmer, top left, in 2009 as they watch women perform a traditional Haitian dance in Port-au-Prince. In New York on Tuesday, Farmer joined in the clarion call to expand the global health agenda to include all the big killers.
Associated Press

KPLU's Tom Paulson caught up with physician-activist Paul Farmer at the Clinton Global Initiative, the other big meeting in New York full of heads of state, celebs and bigwigs.

Farmer, the inspiring and controversial cyclist-celeb Lance Armstrong and others have joined in the clarion call to expand the global health agenda to include all the big killers.

Read more on Humanosphere.

Humanosphere
9:52 am
Tue September 20, 2011

Global health efforts make food, beverage, drug industries nervous

Headquarters of the United Nations.
UN

Chronic or non-communicable diseases (aka NCDs) are the world’s big killers, representing about 60 percent of all causes of death. Cancer, heart disease, stroke, lung disease (mostly from tobacco), diabetes and the like kill many more people — most of them in the developing world — than do infectious diseases like AIDS, TB or malaria.

However, developing health goals to combat NCSs often run up against powerful commercial interests in the food, beverage and pharmaceutical industries.

Humanosphere
8:57 am
Tue September 20, 2011

KPLU's Tom Paulson attending 'weird and wonderful' UN Week

People attend a 'Health Workers Count' event sponsored by Save the Children in New York's Times Square to raise awareness of the importance of midwives and local healthcare providers in developing countries ahead of the Unite Nations General Assembly.
Associated Press

As heads of state, officials and other bigwigs descend on New York City for the United Nations General Assembly meeting, key city streets are closed, the traffic replaced by police officers, patrol cars and vans, and New Yorkers are irritated.

It’s UN Week and most of the buzz is about the Palestinian push for UN recognition as an independent state. President Obama is already in town, scheduled to speak at the UN on Wednesday.

But I’m not here for all that. I just came to see the UN deal with a proposal to re-set the global health agenda — something that, arguably, could do a lot more to increase global stability, our national security and worldwide economic growth than all this other blather. Arguably.

Read more on Humanosphere.

Global Health
12:23 pm
Mon September 19, 2011

Get live ongoing coverage of UN Week from Humanosphere

A week of big meetings surrounding the United Nations in New York, including a pivotal discussion of tackling non-communicable diseases like cancer, heart disease and diabetes ... in poor countries.

Go to Humanosphere for Compelete coverage.

Global Health
6:00 pm
Sun September 18, 2011

What's so controversial about cancer? Ask the U.N.

Some of the leading disease experts from Seattle are visiting the United Nations this week. They’re at a "High-Level" meeting to discuss whether poor countries should start worrying about cancer and diabetes – as much as malaria or AIDS. 

That's a controversial idea, says KPLU’s Humanosphere blogger Tom Paulson.  He's in New York to cover the meeting. Before he left he explained the controversy to KPLU’s Keith Seinfeld.

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Global Health
11:28 am
Fri September 16, 2011

More women in poor countries dying from breast cancer

The number of young women with breast cancer has more than doubled worldwide since 1980, say researchers at Seattle’s Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation.

Most of this, say the University of Washington global health number crunchers, is in the developing world where women lack access to screening, prevention and treatment programs that have reduced the overall risk of breast cancer for women in the rich world.

Read more on Humanosphere.

Global Health
12:05 pm
Wed September 14, 2011

Report shows increasing presence of global health 'industry'

The Washington Global Health Alliance and the City of Seattle’s Office of Economic Development has published a new report describing our region’s growing global health industry (even though they shy away from calling it that, preferring words like “sector” and such).

It’s a fascinating and informative report, showing the growth and increasing economic presence of organizations working on global health in the region.

Read more on Humanosphere.

9/11 Anniversary
4:47 pm
Mon September 12, 2011

Post 9/11: What happened to the global humanitarian agenda?

Dimitra Tzanos Flickr

KPLU's Tom Paulson wondered over on our Humanosphere blog: "What has happened to our sense of ourselves as global citizens and how Sept. 11, 2001, may have altered matters of global health, foreign aid, development — basically, the global humanitarian agenda.

The short answer: It’s a mixed bag of good and bad, some clear signs of what many see as progress but also some disturbing lessons not learned."

Read more at Humanosphere.

Global Health
4:59 pm
Thu September 8, 2011

Fighting global illiteracy with the 'Talking Book'

Kids in Ghana trying out the Talking Book
Literacy Bridge

Words can be just as important as vaccines, drugs or better seeds when it comes to helping the world’s poorest.

And Cliff Schmidt, founder of a Seattle-based organization called Literacy Bridge, has created a device to get these valuable words out to the world’s poorest. It’s called the Talking Book.

Read more on Humanosphere.

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