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  1. 1

    Characterizing the HIV/AIDS epidemic in the Middle East and North Africa: time for strategic action.

    Abu-Raddad LJ; Akala FA; Semini I; Riedner G; Wilson D; Tawil O

    Washington, D.C., World Bank, 2010. [304] p. (World Bank Report No. 54889)

    This study is a continuation of the previous sector review, conducted in 2004. The 2008 review had two main objectives. This review is primarily an update on the situation. In its development strategy, Benin gave considerable importance to the health of its population. This effort is part of the long-term vision of the country. Improving health status, especially for the poor, is one of eight strategic directions for that vision. Similarly, on a more operational level, this objective is reflected in the current Growth Strategy for Poverty Reduction (GPRS 2007-2009). Benin is particularly committed towards the Millennium Development Goals, including 3 on the health sector. This review was also an opportunity to further analyze the constraints in the health system, consistent with the new strategy Health Nutrition and Population World Bank, Strategy adopted in 2007. But this exercise was not intended merely to be analytical. It also aimed to enrich the political dialogue between, on one hand, the actors in health and, secondly, the World Bank and other development partners. This effort relates more specifically to some themes such as governance, private sector involvement and alignment of partners' efforts (called technical and financial partners in Benin or PTFs). From this perspective, the journal is also a contribution to Benin's efforts to advance the IHP (International Health Partnership Plus). This initiative is now the main tool for implementing the Paris Declaration. In practice, the journal has sought to contribute to the consensus between the Ministry of Health and the donor group on the diagnosis of the health system and the changes needed to strengthen it. Several guidelines have emerged stronger from this discussion, particularly in the area of governance of the health system. Beyond the reinforcement of the various components of the health system, two fundamental principles should guide the transformation of this system: 1) A principle of corporate governance: through decentralization of the health system, health facilities must have their basic needs better taken into account (hence the need for bottom-up planning) and especially as more independent financially administrative; and 2) A principle of individual governance: health workers should be strongly encouraged to improve their performance (competence, productivity and compliance of patients). Given the limited success of measures to strengthen inspections and other controls "top-down, this incentive can only come from clients, either directly (i.e., bonuses based on cost recovery), or preferably indirectly with a mechanism for payment by results funded by the state and possibly partners.
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  2. 2

    International Coordinating Group on Vaccine Provision for Epidemic Meningitis Control. Summary report. Geneva, Switzerland, 16-17 January 1997.

    International Coordinating Group on Vaccine Provision for Epidemic Meningitis Control

    Geneva, Switzerland, World Health Organization [WHO], Division of Emerging and Other Communicable Diseases Surveillance and Control, 1997. 19 p. (WHO/EMC/ DIS/ICG/97.9)

    This was the first meeting of the International Coordinating Group (ICG) proposed at the 2-3 December, 1996 meeting of the Ad Hoc Working Group on WHO Strategy for Provision of Meningitis Vaccine for Epidemic Prevention and Control. The meeting was chaired by Dr d'Almeida, DPM, AFRO, and the agenda and list of participants are provided as annexes. The objectives of the meeting were to define terms of reference, agree on the membership of the International Coordinating Group (ICG) and its Executive Sub-Group, to establish the criteria for determining priority distribution of vaccine for epidemic control in the 1997 season, for which only 14 million doses of vaccine would be available, and to consider a strategy for ensuring adequate vaccine supplies in future years. The expected outcome of the meeting was to obtain agreement on the responsibilities of the ICG and its Executive Sub-Group, on the criteria for vaccine distribution in 1997, on a funding mechanism for an emergency stock of vaccines and auto-destruct syringes, and on a strategy to address adequate vaccine and syringe supplies for future years. The meeting met these goals. (excerpt)
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  3. 3
    Peer Reviewed

    Global efforts to eradicate polio.

    Krym VF; MacDonald RD

    CMAJ: Canadian Medical Association Journal. 2004 Jan 20; 170(2):189-190.

    As of Oct. 29, 2003, Nigeria gained the dubious honour of having the highest number of reported cases of polio (217 new cases) in the world, surpassing the previous leader, India. The resurgence of poliomyelitis in northern Nigeria poses a threat to neighbouring countries and further postpones the goal of the World Health Organization (WHO) to eradicate the disease globally. This is by no means an impossible goal: humans are the only natural reservoir, an inexpensive and effective vaccine is available, immunity is life-long, and the virus can survive for only a very short time outside the human host. (excerpt)
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  4. 4

    Initiative for Vaccine Research. Task Force on Clinical Trials of Dengue Vaccines, 14 November 2002.

    World Health Organization [WHO]. Vaccines and Biologicals Department. Initiative for Vaccine Research. Task Force on Clinical Trials of Dengue Vaccines

    Geneva, Switzerland, WHO, 2002. 12 p. (VAB/IVR/VIR2002.03.1)

    The second meeting of the WHO Task Force on Clinical Trials of Dengue Vaccines was held on 14 November 2002 in Denver, Colorado, USA. The Task Force was established to accelerate the development, evaluation, and introduction of urgently needed dengue vaccine candidates. The main objective of the Task Force is to continue to analyze results on safety, immunogenicity, and efficacy of currently available vaccine candidates in clinical trials and to provide scientific advice on the next steps to be taken, giving special attention to vaccine safety. The meeting reviewed the progress in clinical trials of four live attenuated vaccine candidates. The task force recommended specific activities in support of future development and clinical studies and identified the role of WHO in this process. The meeting was co-sponsored by the Pediatric Dengue Vaccine Initiative. (excerpt)
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  5. 5

    Nutrition and crises.

    Marchione T

    In: Nutrition: a foundation for development, compiled by United Nations. Administrative Committee on Coordination [ACC]. Sub-Committee on Nutrition [SCN]. Geneva, Switzerland, United Nations, Administrative Committee on Coordination [ACC], Sub-Committee on Nutrition [SCN], 2002. 4 p.. (Nutrition: a Foundation for Development, Brief 9)

    In the past 15 years food insecurity, malnutrition, and disinvestments in health systems have contributed to increasing national crises and made countries more vulnerable to systemic shocks. Over this period the world has experienced an alarming increase in costly humanitarian disasters that have tragically affected millions of people each year. Shocks have included violent internal conflicts; natural traumas such as droughts and hurricanes; economic shocks; and the surging HIV/AIDS epidemic. The greatest numbers of affected people have been those uprooted by war and natural disasters, which doubled from 20 million in 1985 to 40 million in 1994 and remained over 35 million in 1999, and those living with HIV/AIDS, which increased from only a few million in the early 1980s to 34 million in 2000. Besides causing terrible suffering and death, these crises have caused many developing countries to suffer serious economic and food production setbacks. Global expenditures for humanitarian crisis interventions have grown while official development investment has stagnated or declined, adding to the drag on development. For instance, from 1985 to 2000 the World Food Programme shifted the balance of its program toward emergency response and away from sustainable development of food security and nutrition. It is now time to invest in nutrition as a tool for crisis prevention, mitigation, and management for three reasons: 1. Good nutrition relieves the social unrest underlying violent conflict; 2. Good nutrition decreases the human vulnerability that transforms systemic shocks into humanitarian disasters; and 3. Good nutrition lowers the death rate and promotes timely return to equitable and durable development in the aftermath of crises. (excerpt)
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