Health

‘Complacency’ a factor in stagnating global vaccination rates, warn UN health chiefs

More than one in 10 children – almost 20 million worldwide – failed to receive potentially lifesaving vaccines in 2018, the UN said on Monday, citing obstacles including conflict, cost and complacency. 

Two-thirds of global drug deaths now from opioids: UN drugs report

Opioids, which include both heroin and legal pain relievers, were responsible for around two-thirds of drug-related deaths in 2017, the latest World Drug Report from the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) revealed on Wednesday. 

First-ever WHO global report on epilepsy highlights care gap in poorer countries

More than seven in 10 people with epilepsy in developing countries are not getting the low-cost care they need, and UN health experts said on Thursday this could lead to a “significantly higher” risk of death among sufferers than in industrialized nations.

9.7 billion on Earth by 2050, but growth rate slowing, says new UN population report

By the year 2050, there will be some 9.7 billion people living on Earth, says a UN population report released on Monday. However, the overall growth rate will continue to fall, and more countries will have to adapt to the consequences of an ageing population.

Recognize, celebrate and ‘stand in solidarity’ with persons with albinism

International Albinism Awareness Day is a time to “recognize, celebrate and stand in solidarity with persons with albinism around the world”, the United Nations urged on Thursday, taking place this year under the banner, “Still Standing Strong”.

‘From farm to plate’, first-ever World Food Safety Day demonstrates the need to take unsafe food off the menu

Unsafe food kills an estimated 420,000 people every year, the head of the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Thursday, just ahead of the first-ever UN World Food Safety Day. Children under-five are the most at risk, carrying 40 per cent of the foodborne disease burden, amounting to 125,000 deaths every year.

Wednesday’s Daily Brief: #NoTobacco Day, China’s economy, family farming, #ClimateAction

This Wednesday, we cover: the dangers of smoking for World No Tobacco Day; China’s creative economy; sustainability through family farming, floating cities and #ClimateAction.

DR Congo: Strengthened effort against Ebola is paying off, but insecurity still major constraint – UN health agency

Although the Ebola response in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) continues to make headway thanks to the determination of health workers on the ground, insecurity is still hampering the response, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Tuesday. This has led the UN to establish a new coordination structure in the hopes that access to at-risk areas can be improved.

End ‘shame, isolation and segregation’ of fistula sufferers, urges UN reproductive health chief

Although obstetric fistula has largely been eliminated in developed countries, more than two million women and girls still live with the painful and disfiguring condition, according to UN data.

International Day of the Midwife: 5 things you should know

Why are midwives important? What impact have they had on mothers’ and babies’ health? As the United Nations celebrates midwives across the world on Sunday, here are five things you should know about the critical role they play in communities.