Global & Disaster Medicine

Archive for the ‘Global Health’ Category

Polypills: Good or bad?


“…….The pill in the study, which involved the participation of 6,800 rural villagers aged 50 to 75 in Iran, contained a cholesterol-lowering statin, two blood-pressure drugs and a low-dose aspirin.

But the study, called PolyIran and published Thursday by The Lancet, was designed 14 years ago……..Its advocates — including some prominent cardiologists — point to the study as evidence that the World Health Organization should endorse distributing such pills without a prescription to hundreds of millions of people over age 50 around the globe. Some have estimated that widespread use could cut cardiac death rates by 60 to 80 percent...….”

7 people were hospitalized in ICU with a potentially fatal lung toxin after vaping cannabis or CBD oils

County of Kings PH

Nancy Gerking  Assistant Director of Public Health Phone (559) 852-2574
HANFORD – Dr. Milton Teske, Health Officer, with the Kings County Department of Public Health is issuing a warning regarding the dangers of vaping cannabis or CBD oils. Since June, seven cases of Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS) have been identified, requiring hospitalization and respiratory support among previously healthy adults. Some of these patients’ conditions were so severe they were admitted to the intensive care unit and required respiratory support through mechanical devices.
The first symptoms of ARDS are feeling like you can’t get enough air into your lungs, rapid breathing, a low blood oxygen level, low blood pressure, confusion, and extreme tiredness.  If you are experiencing any of these symptoms seek immediate medical treatment.
A reported common exposure among these patients is that they have been vaping cannabis or CBD oils. At this time, no infectious cause has been identified.
One pattern also observed during the investigation is that all of the cases to date have involved the purchasing of vape cartridges from “pop-up shops”.  Pop-up shops are temporary shops that open for an undetermined amount of time, advertise by word of mouth, and will move locations frequently.  These pop-up shops are not licensed retailers and do not follow any current regulations or safety practices, including selling only products that have been tested for contaminants. Under no circumstances should you vape cannabis or CBD oils obtained from a “pop-up shop”.
Although cannabis or CBD oil use is legal in California, if you are going to use cannabis or CBD oil or a combination of both, be cautious, and only purchase from a licensed retailer.
The Kings County Department of Public Health has partnered with the California Department of Public Health for continued investigation and surveillance.
For more information on cannabis or vaping uses go to:

Nourishing Lives and Building the Future: the History of Nutrition at USAID


Nourishing Lives and Building the Future: the History of Nutrition at USAID

Nourishing Lives & Building the Future THE HISTORY of NUTRITION at USAID

For more than 50 years, USAID has worked to address the devastating effects of malnutrition, continually learning and adapting our response to ever-evolving nutrition needs and understanding. This resource describes the Agency’s investments and contributions to global progress to improve nutrition, achieved through close collaboration with implementing partners, host countries, civil society, the private sector, researchers, and other key stakeholders.

Download the full History resource

Chapter 1: Introduction and Overview

USAID’s nutrition programming was established in the 1960s, and the U.S government was providing food assistance even earlier through Title II, or the Food for Peace Act, which built the foundation for nutrition at USAID. In addition to detailing the origins of nutrition at USAID, this chapter also outlines the evolution of USAID’s nutrition programming and investments over time.

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Chapter 2: Improving Nutrition for Women and Young Children

Improving the dietary practices and nutritional status of women and children has always been at the core of USAID’s nutrition and health programs. This chapter presents the history of USAID’s advancements to cross-cutting approaches for improving the delivery of nutrition services and enhance maternal, infant and young child nutrition, including the Agency’s community-based focus and its innovations in social and behavior change.

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Chapter 3: From Vitamin A to Zinc: Addressing Micronutrient Malnutrition

Micronutrients are essential for good nutrition, proper growth and development, and overall health. As this chapter details, USAID has worked for decades to ensure individuals in need receive the nutrients they lack– particularly vitamin A, iron, iodine, and zinc which have a direct impact on maternal and child survival.

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Chapter 4: Combating the HIV Epidemic through Food and Nutrition

Poor nutrition magnifies HIV infection for affected individuals, including increasing the risk of infection, hospitalization, and mortality. Since the early 2000s, USAID has supported critical research on nutrition and HIV, developed country guidance and training materials, strengthened health systems, and provided HIV-affected families with food commodities and nutrition support to meet the nutritional needs of individuals living with HIV.

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A group of women harvesting crops

Chapter 5: Multi-sectoral Nutrition and Food Security

In the early 1970s, USAID and other global actors recognized the need for a multi-sectoral approach to reducing malnutrition— working across sectors to address the many causes and consequences of inadequate nutrition. Working closely with partners, USAID has played a key role in identifying the causes of malnutrition, addressing them through a multi-sectoral lens, and exploring how to improve nutrition through agriculture and food security efforts.

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Chapter 6: Research and Measurement for Understanding and Reducing Malnutrition

Findings from nutrition research are critical to advancing the work of country governments, foundations, international organizations, partners, and the entire nutrition community. For decades, USAID has supported cutting-edge research, translated key findings into practice, and invested to improve how nutritional status is measured, examples of which are described throughout this chapter.

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Women being trained in child nutrition
Karen Kasmauski/USAID’s Maternal and Child Survival Program

Spotlight: Capacity Building and Knowledge Management

Long-term support for the development of country-level human and institutional capacity is a vital component of sustaining the results of USAID’s investments beyond the end of external assistance. Capacity building and knowledge management are therefore important elements of our nutrition investments, and this spotlight section offers examples of the Agency’s support.

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Chapter 7: Adapting to a Changing World

Nutrition programming will need to seek creative new ways to improve food systems, food quality, nutrition behaviors, and social norms around eating, in addition to continuing to implement and scale up established approaches to improve nutrition. To achieve this, USAID will seek out strategic and innovative ways to support partner countries in becoming more self-reliant and capable of leading their own development journeys.

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CDC: Climate Effects on Health


Climate Effects on Health

The information on health effects has been excerpted from the Third National Climate Assessment’s Health Chapterexternal icon. Additional information regarding the health effects of climate change and references to supporting literature can be found in the Health Chapter at icon.

Climate change, together with other natural and human-made health stressors, influences human health and disease in numerous ways. Some existing health threats will intensify and new health threats will emerge. Not everyone is equally at risk. Important considerations include age, economic resources, and location.

In the U.S., public health can be affected by disruptions of physical, biological, and ecological systems, including disturbances originating here and elsewhere. The health effects of these disruptions include increased respiratory and cardiovascular disease, injuries and premature deaths related to extreme weather events, changes in the prevalence and geographical distribution of food- and water-borne illnesses and other infectious diseases, and threats to mental health.

Air Pollution
Diseases Carried by Vectors
Food and Waterborne Diarrheal Disease
Food Security
Mental Health and Stress-Related Disorders

Which will be the 10 most populous nations by 2100?


“…..By 2100, new UN figures show that 4 of today’s 10 most populous nations will be replaced by African countries.

Brazil, Bangladesh, Russia and Mexico—where populations are projected to stagnate or decline—will drop out. In their place: Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia, Tanzania and Egypt. All 4 are projected to more double in population.

Top 10 rankings in population growth by 2100 include only 2 non-African nations—Pakistan and the US.

China will shrink by 374 million fewer people—more than the entire US population……”

Causes of severe pneumonia requiring hospital admission in children around the world


“…….Between Aug 15, 2011, and Jan 30, 2014, we enrolled 4232 cases and 5119 community controls. The primary analysis group was comprised of 1769 (41·8% of 4232) cases without HIV infection and with positive chest x-rays and 5102 (99·7% of 5119) community controls without HIV infection.

Wheezing was present in 555 (31·7%) of 1752 cases (range by site 10·6–97·3%).

30-day case-fatality ratio was 6·4% (114 of 1769 cases).

Blood cultures were positive in 56 (3·2%) of 1749 cases, and Streptococcus pneumoniae was the most common bacteria isolated (19 [33·9%] of 56). Almost all cases (98·9%) and controls (98·0%) had at least one pathogen detected by PCR in the NP-OP specimen. The detection of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), parainfluenza virus, human metapneumovirus, influenza virus, S pneumoniae, Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib), H influenzae non-type b, and Pneumocystis jirovecii in NP-OP specimens was associated with case status.

The aetiology analysis estimated that viruses accounted for 61·4% (95% credible interval [CrI] 57·3–65·6) of causes, whereas bacteria accounted for 27·3% (23·3–31·6) and Mycobacterium tuberculosis for 5·9% (3·9–8·3).

Viruses were less common (54·5%, 95% CrI 47·4–61·5 vs 68·0%, 62·7–72·7) and bacteria more common (33·7%, 27·2–40·8 vs 22·8%, 18·3–27·6) in very severe pneumonia cases than in severe cases.

RSV had the greatest aetiological fraction (31·1%, 95% CrI 28·4–34·2) of all pathogens. Human rhinovirus, human metapneumovirus A or B, human parainfluenza virus, S pneumoniae, M tuberculosis, and H influenzae each accounted for 5% or more of the aetiological distribution. We observed differences in aetiological fraction by age for Bordetella pertussis, parainfluenza types 1 and 3, parechovirus–enterovirus, P jirovecii, RSV, rhinovirus, Staphylococcus aureus, and S pneumoniae, and differences by severity for RSV, S aureus, S pneumoniae, and parainfluenza type 3. The leading ten pathogens of each site accounted for 79% or more of the site’s aetiological fraction…..”

Health concerns for this summer’s travelers.


  • Worldwide: Measles

  • Japan: Rubella

  • Brazil: Yellow Fever

  • Indonesia: Polio

  • Israel: Leptospirosis

  • Europe And India: Heat

India: Encephalitis in Bihar State has killed more than 142 children.

India Today


No Cuban doctors caring for the Brazilian people: All politics…..


“…..In November, Cuba announced it was recalling the 8,517 doctors it had deployed to poor and remote regions of Brazil, a response to the tough stance against Cuba that Mr. Bolsonaro had vowed to take when he was elected in October.

The abrupt departure of thousands of doctors has presented Mr. Bolsonaro with one of his first major policy challenges — and has tested his ability to deliver on a promise to find homegrown substitutions quickly…..Cuban doctors have long complained about getting only a small cut of the money for their work, and Mr. Bolsonaro said they would have to be allowed to keep their entire salaries and to bring their families with them to Brazil. They would also have to pass equivalency exams to prove their qualifications...…..”

One answer to climate change and the worsening human condition: Camel milk


“……But the snorting beasts now have an additional benefit. They are being hailed for their ability to withstand climate-related droughts that are set to worsen in the Horn of Africa, where temperatures average above 30 degrees Celsius parts of the year.

Their milk has been dubbed “white gold” by food experts who say the creamy liquid could help conquer malnutrition, diabetes and other medical concerns, making it a tempting new superfood for health-conscious Western consumers.

With a growth in camel milk products available – from chocolate bars to baby milk formula and ice cream to “camelcino” coffees – there is a growing demand from consumers from North America to China, market experts say.

“If there is water scarcity, (camels) can go a month without water. Even when they are thirsty they can still produce milk – there is no downside to camels,” said Issack who uses money from milk sales to support his family…..

Camel milk is especially nutritious for young children and the elderly, she said, and selling it to passersby has allowed her to pay her debts and her children’s school fees.

The milk, commonly drunk in countries from the United Arab Emirates to Chad and Mongolia, has a vitamin C content three times as rich as cow’s milk, according to the FAO, and can benefit those who lack access to a varied and balanced diet.

“It’s widely claimed that there are lots of medicinal properties to the milk. It’s a different make-up of the proteins, carbohydrates and fatty acids,” said Simpkin.

“That’s what makes people claim that it’s much more nutritious.”………”


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