Development Health Advice 

Five avoidable deaths per minute shows urgent need for action on patient safety

“Speak up for patient safety!” is the slogan for the first World Patient Safety Day, observed this Tuesday, 17 September. The objective is to prevent and reduce risks, errors and harm, such as dispensing the wrong medication due to a mix-up over similar packaging. “No one should be harmed while receiving health care. And yet globally, at least five patients die every minute because of unsafe care,” Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General, said ahead of the day.  “We need a patient safety culture that promotes partnership with patients, encourages reporting…

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Development Health Advice 

Monday’s Daily Brief: Suicide death every 40 seconds, rights chief on climate change link, Venezuela, Dorian updates, desertification summit latest

Every 40 seconds, someone dies by suicide: WHO Despite progress in national prevention strategies, one person dies by suicide every 40 seconds, the World Health Organization’s (WHO) Director-General lamented on Monday, highlighting key findings of the agency’s latest report on global suicide estimates. Speaking in Geneva ahead of World Suicide Prevention Day on 10 September, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said, “every death is a tragedy for family, friends and colleagues,” yet many more suicides can be prevented. Suicide is now the leading cause of death among youth aged 15-29. An estimated 20 per cent of global suicides are a…

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Development Health Advice 

One person dies by suicide every 40 seconds: new UN health agency report

Speaking in Geneva ahead of World Suicide Prevention day, recognized on 10 September, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said, “every death is a tragedy for family friends and colleagues,” yet many more suicides can be prevented. All countries should “incorporate proven suicide prevention strategies into national health and education programmes in a sustainable way”, he added. Since WHO’s first report on the issue was filed in 2014, the number of countries with national suicide prevention strategies has increased, and now stands at 38. However, this participation “is still far too few…

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Development Health Advice 

Thursday’s Daily Brief:  Facebook rallies against vaccination ‘fake news’, DPR Korea UN staff cuts call, Syria crop report, crisis funding and Dorian latest

WHO welcomes Facebook commitment to stop vaccine misinformation from going viral The World Health Organization (WHO) on Thursday welcomed Facebook’s pledge to ensure users can separate fact from fiction when it comes to vaccines, across its platforms from Facebook Search, to Groups, Pages and forums. Following months of discussions between WHO and Facebook on the spread of inaccuracies when it comes to immunization, the social media giant has vowed to direct millions of users to “WHO’s accurate and reliable vaccine information in several languages, to ensure that vital health messages reach people who need them most”,…

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Development Health Advice 

UN health agency welcomes Facebook pledge to stop vaccine misinformation from going viral

Following months of discussions between WHO and Facebook on the spread of inaccuracies when it comes to immunization, the social media giant has vowed to direct millions of users to “WHO’s accurate and reliable vaccine information in several languages, to ensure that vital health messages reach people who need them most”, WHO Director-General, Tedros Adhanom Ghebryesus said in a statement. “Vaccine misinformation is a major threat to global health that could reverse decades of progress made in tackling preventable diseases”, WHO warned. Deadly and debilitating diseases such as diphtheria, hepatitis, polio…

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Development Health Advice 

Crop yields are up in Syria, but higher prices still cause major strain: new UN report

The Crop and Food Security Assessment Mission (CFSAM) report, produced jointly by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the World Food Programme (WFP), reveals that while wheat production is estimated to be 2.2 million metric tonnes, compared with last year’s 29-year low of 1.2 million, it is still far below the pre-war average (2002-2011) of 4.1 million tonnes. An estimated two million tonne barley harvest this year is more than five times that of 2018, and more than 150 per cent higher than the average levels produced prior…

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Development Health Advice 

A third of young people polled by UN, report being a victim of online bullying

Speaking out anonymously through the youth engagement tool U-Report, almost three-quarters of young people also said social networks, including Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and Twitter, are the most common place for online bullying. “Connected classrooms mean school no longer ends once a student leaves class, and, unfortunately, neither does schoolyard bullying”, said UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore. “Improving young people’s education experience means accounting for the environment they encounter online as well as offline.” Via SMS and instant messaging, young people were asked a series of questions about their experiences of online bullying and…

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Development Health Advice 

UN chief pays tribute to the courage of DR Congo citizens, and the sacrifice of blue helmets

Mr. Guterres was speaking at a press conference on Sunday, in the town of Beni, which is at the epicentre of the country’s deadly Ebola epidemic, where, he said, the people of the region are also facing other serious problems, such as measles, malaria and cholera, as well as insecurity. Addressing the assembled media in French, he said “I hope that my presence here today reaffirms my full support for MONUSCO, in the fight against armed groups who spread fear and death. MONUSCO, and its partners – the armed forces…

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Development Health Advice 

Technology brings positive change, but ‘collateral damage’ must be minimized: senior UN official

Speaking to UN News, Mr. Avan stressed the importance of acknowledging the negative aspects of new technology – which could include job losses and a drastic shift away from traditional ways of working – and finding ways to achieve a successful transition to the so-called ‘Fourth Industrial Revolution’, which involves the mass adoption of artificial intelligence, robotics, ‘big data’ processing, the Internet of Things, autonomous vehicles and blockchain technologies. Mr. Avan, the Director of the Strategy, Policy & Governance Division of the UN’s Office of Information and Communication Technology (OICT),…

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Development Health Advice 

Friday’s Daily Brief: Education in Africa, Sudan flash-floods, WHO on Ebola, spike in South Sudan violence, Rwanda, Uganda move to normalize relations

School closures triple in Central and Western Africa as education comes under fire A surge in “deliberate” attacks against students, teachers and schools in West and Central Africa has led to a tripling in school closures in the last year and left almost two million youngsters “robbed of an education”, the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) said on Friday. In a new report detailing threats of violence against schools across the region and issues as a ‘Child Alert’, the UN agency warned that a generation of children risks being denied the right to learn.  Former Syrian…

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