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Malaria treatment policy: technical support needs assessment. Malaria Action Coalition (MAC) Senegal Mission report, March 14-21, 2005.
Arlington, Virginia, Management Sciences for Health [MSH], Rational Pharmaceutical Management Plus, 2005. 18 p. (USAID Cooperative Agreement No. HRN-A-00-00-00016-00; USAID Development Experience Clearinghouse DocID / Order No. PN-ADF-437)African countries are undergoing a period of dramatic change in their national malaria treatment policies as more of these countries adopt artemisinin-based combination therapy (ACT). Successful implementation of the new ACT policies presents many challenges and most countries will require technical assistance from a variety of sources, both internal and external. The Malaria Action Coalition (MAC) partnership brings together three partners that have considerable expertise in many of the areas related to ACT implementation, which complements expertise brought by other Roll Back Malaria (RBM) partners. The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) has made a commitment to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (GFATM) to provide technical assistance through MAC. This mission was therefore designed to assess the progress of Senegal toward implementing the new ACT policy and to determine what, if any, additional technical support it may need to successfully complete the implementation. It is expected that the successful implementation of the ACT policy will contribute to the attainment of the RBM goals for the prevention, treatment, and control of malaria in sub-Saharan Africa through coordinated technical support. (excerpt)
Bulletin of the World Health Organization. 2006 May; 84(5):338.The context for this theme collection is the publication of the report of the Commission on Intellectual Property Rights, Innovation and Public Health. The report of the Commission -- instigated by WHO's World Health Assembly in 2003 -- was an attempt to gather all the stakeholders involved to analyse the relationship between intellectual property rights, innovation and public health, with a particular focus on the question of funding and incentive mechanisms for the creation of new medicines, vaccines and diagnostic tests, to tackle diseases disproportionately affecting developing countries. In reality, generating a common analysis in the face of the divergent perspectives of stakeholders, and indeed of the Commission, presented a challenge. As in many fields -- not least in public health -- the evidence base is insufficient and contested. Even when the evidence is reasonably clear, its significance, or the appropriate conclusions to be drawn from it, may be interpreted very differently according to the viewpoint of the observer. (excerpt)
In: Global health and governance. HIV / AIDS, edited by Nana K. Poku and Alan Whiteside. Basingstoke, England, Palgrave Macmillan, 2003 Dec. 109-122.Today in much of Africa economic growth has slowed and living standards for the majority have suffered in the face of rising unemployment and mass poverty, resulting in incomes that are presently below the 1970 level. One problem that has been the focus of much attention and contention over the past 20 years is the huge foreign debt owed by African countries to bilateral donors and multilateral institutions. Debt servicing is consuming a disproportionate amount of scarce resources at the expense of the provision of basic services to the poor. In order to receive help in servicing their debts, countries must agree to implement structural economic reforms. This often entails drastic cuts in social expenditures, the privatisation of basic services, and the liberalisation of domestic trade consistent with WTO rules. These policy decisions have had a direct impact on the capacity of African countries to promote, fulfill and protect the right to health of their citizens. This is further compounded by ill-conceived privatisation of basic services such as water and health services, without any regard for the ability of the poor to access these essential services at a cost they can afford. Finally, adherence to WTO trade rules, which often comes as an extension of liberalisation policy, hampers the capacity of African governments to produce or purchase less expensive generic drugs for their citizen without fear of retaliation from the developed countries. (author's)
Connections. 2006 Jan;  p.In September 2005, the World Health Organization (WHO) awarded Ukraine a 2.5 million dollar grant to combat the country's growing tuberculosis epidemic, according to Mykola Polischuk, who was Minister of Health at the time the grant was awarded. This funding will provide for the purchase of high-quality medications and allow for the cost-effective treatment of 75,000 patients over three years beginning in January 2006. The new treatment program will employ the DOTS (Directly Observed Therapy-Short Course) strategy, which has been recognized as the world's best strategy for fighting TB largely due to its reliance on cheaper microbiological methods of diagnosis rather than X-rays. Patients are first identified using microscopy services then prescribed the correct dosage of anti-TB medicines for a period of six to eight months. If administered accurately, DOTS can successfully treat TB in 99 percent of cases. Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko echoed WHO's decision to increase TB funding in October when he pledged to increase health funding, restore the country's failing health system, and fight the spread of HIV and tuberculosis, according to the Associated Press. (excerpt)
Traditional medicine development for medical and dental primary health care delivery system in Africa.
African Journal of Traditional, Complementary and Alternative Medicines. 2005; 2(1):46-61.Traditional African Medicine (TAM) is our socio-economic and socio-cultural heritage, servicing over 80% of the populations in Africa. Although, it has come a long way from the times of our ancestors, not much significant progress on its development and utilization had taken place due to colonial suppression on one hand, foreign religions in particular, absolute lack of patriotism and political will of our Governments, and then on the other hand, the carefree attitudes of most African medical scientists of all categories. It is incontrovertible that TAM exhibits far more merits than demerits and its values can be exploited provided the Africans themselves can approach it with an open mind and scientific mentality. The degree of sensitization and mobilization by the World Health Organization (WHO) has encouraged some African countries to commence serious development on TAM. The African Regional Director of the WHO has outlined a few guidelines on the responsibilities of all African nations for the realistic development of TAM, in order to sustain our health agenda and perpetuate our culture. The gradual extinction of the forests and the inevitable disappearance of the aged Traditional Medical Practitioner should pose an impending deadline for us to learn, acquire and document our medical cultural endowment for the benefit of all Africans and indeed the entire mankind. (author's)
Death watch, Part 5. An unequal calculus of life and death. As millions perished in pandemic, firms debated access to drugs.
WASHINGTON POST. 2000 Dec 27; A1.In response to the starkness of the global divide between the HIV-positive people and the ones saved from infection, and its growing political repercussions, the pharmaceutical industry and governments have pledged help. Five international agencies (Joint UN Programme on HIV/AIDS, WHO, UN International Children's Emergency Fund, World Bank, and UN Development Program) conducted a meeting with five pharmaceutical companies (Merck, Hoffmann-La Roche, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Glaxo Wellcome, and Boehringer Ingelheim) to negotiate global access to AIDS drugs. Although negotiations began in Geneva in 1991 and lasted for 2 years, both parties have been hesitant to reach a compromise because of one major factor--the price. These companies say they are willing to provide big discounts, yet they required that the concerned government and these international agencies should burden some of the expenses. However, it came out that even these international agencies are reluctant to invest in AIDS drugs saying that it is “cost-ineffective”. The bottomline of the negotiation is that financial resources play an important part when discussing global access to AIDS drugs and until this can be settled, millions of HIV-infected individuals will continue to suffer.