Health

New humanitarian air service boosts COVID-19 response in the Pacific

A flight carrying protective masks, ventilators and other essential medical supplies for COVID-19 response, landed in Papua New Guinea on Thursday, marking the start of a humanitarian air service for the Pacific region, Governments and the UN World Food Programme (WFP) have announced.

UN chief outlines ‘bold steps’ for education in the face of COVID-19 disruption

The COVID-19 pandemic has created the largest disruption to education in history and prolonged school closures could further entrench inequalities in access to learning, the UN Secretary-General said on Tuesday, underlining the need for “bold steps” to address the crisis.

Leaving No Roma behind during a pandemic, and beyond: a UN Resident Coordinator blog

Roma people in Europe face widespread discrimination in many areas of life, including housing and health. In this opinion piece, Francoise Jacob, the UN Resident Coordinator in Serbia, explains how the UN is helping Roma communities, many of which have no access to safe water or electricity, to cope with the COVID-19 pandemic.

No end in sight to COVID crisis, and its impact will last for ‘decades to come’

Expressing “appreciation for WHO and partners’ COVID-19 pandemic response efforts”, the emergency committee convened by the UN health agency’s chief, made it clear that there is not yet an end in sight to the public health crisis that has so far infected more than 17 million and killed over 650,000 people.

Health must come before the economy, insists top UN official for Latin America and the Caribbean

In Latin America, where much of the region has dealt with years of sluggish growth, the economic crisis brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic is pushing millions more into poverty, says Alicia Bárcena, the head of the UN regional body for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC).

Five things you should know about disposable masks and plastic pollution

The fight against plastic pollution is being hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, as the use of disposable masks, gloves and other protective equipment soars, but UN agencies and partners insist that, if effective measures are put into place, the amount of plastics discarded every year can be significantly cut, or even eliminated.

COVID-19 is not just seasonal, cautions WHO, as ‘first wave’ continues

The COVID-19 virus is likely not impacted by the changing seasons like other respiratory diseases, the UN health agency said on Tuesday, before urging much greater respect for physical distancing measures to stop it spreading.

Trade pact could boost Africa’s income by as much as $450 billion: World Bank

The African Continental Free Trade Area represents a major opportunity for countries to boost growth, reduce poverty, broaden economic inclusion and help “expand opportunities for all Africans”, hailed a World Bank official on Monday, which if fully implemented, could boost regional income by around $450 billion.

Spread of hepatitis B in children under five, lowest in decades: WHO

The global prevalence of potentially-deadly hepatitis B in children under age five, dropped to under one per cent in 2019 – down from five per cent in the pre-vaccine decades between the 1980s and early 2000s, the World Health Organization (WHO) reported on Monday.

COVID-19 provides opportunity to resolve conflicts, address weaknesses across Arab region: UN chief

While all Arab states are facing difficulties in responding to COVID-19, the pandemic can also provide an opportunity to resolve long-standing conflicts and address structural weaknesses across the region, the UN Secretary-General said on Thursday.