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Lancet. 2007 Nov 24; 370(9601):1744-1746.The four papers in this Series called Who Counts? describe the state of the world's vital statistics, and the fact that few countries derive these from routine compulsory measures through civil registration. However, every country in the world has the capacity to produce useful economic data. Because of its particular interest in, and requirements for, demographic and epidemiological data, the health sector should raise similar expectations of national capacity to produce vital statistics. Unrepresentative, biased, incomplete, and often out-of-date, the world's vital statistics compare poorly with the detailed information available on every country's economy. The effort and expense of gathering and interpreting data on national income and trade balances are accepted costs of monitoring economic prospects in an international market. Health is arguably as important as economics, and establishing their mutual interdependence has made a big difference to the funding and attention that health attracts.Sen proposes mortality as an indicator of economic success or failure, but many countries are still making patchy and incomplete efforts to count lives and deaths, and to document how their people die. (excerpt)
ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL COUNCIL OFFICIAL RECORDS. 1991; Suppl 1:24-5.This document contains the text of a 1991 UN resolution on refugee and displaced women and children. After reviewing previous UN action on this issue, the resolution recommends that: 1) member states cooperate with UN agencies and nongovernmental organizations to address the root cases of refugee migrations; 2) women and children be protected from violence and abuse; 3) the specific needs of refugee women and children be considered in planning; 4) refugee women be given sufficient information to make decisions on their own future; 5) women and, when possible, children, be given access to individual identification documents; 6) refugee women participate fully in the assessment of their needs and in the planning and implementation of programs; 7) the UN Secretary-General review the ability of its organizations to address the situation of refugee women and children; and 8) international organizations increase their capacity to respond to the needs of refugee women and children through greater coordination of efforts. The resolution commends member states which receive large numbers of refugees and asks the international community to share the resulting burden and further recommends that all pertinent organizations adopt an appropriate policy on refugee women and children, female field staff be recruited, staff be trained to increase awareness of the issues related to refugee of women and children and skills for planning appropriate actions, and the collection of refugee statistics be disaggregated by age and gender.