World Polio Day

October 24, 2012 marks World Polio Day -- the first since India was removed from the list of countries with active transmission of wild poliovirus. 

In 1988, the forty-first World Health Assembly adopted a resolution for the worldwide eradication of polio. It marked the launch of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI), spearheaded by national governments, WHO, Rotary International, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), UNICEF, and supported by key partners including the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. 

Global tuberculosis report 2012

Today, the World Health Organization released the 2012 Global Tuberculosis Report, which provides the latest information and analysis about the tuberculosis (TB) epidemic and progress in TB care and control at global, regional and country levels. It is based primarily on data reported by WHO’s Member States in annual rounds of global TB data collection.

On World Sight Day, Merck and Partners Mark 25 Years of Successful Collaboration To Help Eliminate River Blindness

Today on World Sight Day, 25 years after Merck started the MECTIZAN® Donation Program (MDP), the company celebrates with partners important progress in the elimination of river blindness, one of the leading causes of preventable blindness worldwide. In October 1987, Merck made the decision to donate the medication MECTIZAN for the treatment of river blindness (onchocerciasis) – as much as needed, for as long as needed – to eliminate the disease as a public health problem. MDP efforts are focused in Africa, Latin America and Yemen, where river blindness is endemic. In 1998, Merck expanded the MDP to include the elimination of lymphatic filariasis (LF), in African countries and Yemen where it co-exists with river blindness. World leaders come together to discuss the role of MDP in establishing a platform for disease control in a landmark event titled: 'Disease Elimination in the 21st Century.'

Sanofi and TB Alliance Announce Collaboration to Accelerate New Treatments Against Tuberculosis

Sanofi and the Global Alliance for TB Drug Development (TB Alliance) announced today a new research collaboration agreement to accelerate the discovery and development of novel compounds against tuberculosis (TB), a deadly infectious disease that resulted in almost 1.5 million deaths worldwide in 2010.

Developing World Health Partnerships Directory reflects pharmaceutical industry’s and partners’ commitment to improving health in developing countries

The International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers & Associations (IFPMA) published the 2012 update to its Developing World Health Partnerships Directory today. Now totaling 220 and reaching people in more than 160 countries, these health partnerships highlight the commitment of research-based pharmaceutical industry and its many partners including governments, intergovernmental organizations, nongovernmental organizations, private sector companies and universities to improve health around the world.

Republic of Uganda and MSD Launch Cervical Cancer Vaccination Program

The Republic of Uganda through the Ministry of Health (MoH), supported by MSD (known as Merck in the United States and Canada), today announced the launch of a national vaccination program with GARDASIL® for eligible girls 9 to 13 years of age in 12 districts throughout the country. Cervical cancer is the most frequent cancer diagnosed among women in Uganda, and incidence rates of the disease in the country are about three times the global average. An estimated 3,500 women in Uganda are diagnosed with cervical cancer each year.

University of Cape Town Researchers Believe They Have Found a Single Dose Cure for Malaria

The University of Cape Town’s Science Department believes that it has found a single dose cure for Malaria. This was announced by researchers that have been working on this compound, from the aminopyridine class, for several years. Unlike conventional multidrug malaria treatments that the malaria parasite has become resistant to, Professor Kelly Chibale and his colleagues now believe that they have discovered a drug that over 18 months of trials ”killed these resistant parasites instantly”.

Guinea worm is poised to become the second human disease to be eradicated

Guinea worm disease is reaching the end of its days. The parasitic infection, which has sickened millions, mostly in Asia and Africa, is on the verge of being done in not by sophisticated medicine but by aggressive public health efforts in some of the poorest and most remote parts of the world.

Patents for Humanity: USPTO launches new award

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office created Patents for Humanity to provide business incentives for patent holders to tackle the world's most pressing challenges. This 12-month pilot advances the President’s global development agenda by rewarding companies who bring life-saving technologies to underserved regions of the world, and by highlighting positive examples of humanitarian actions that are compatible with business interests and strong patent rights.

UN-backed anti-measles campaign reaches over 5 million Afghan children

A United Nations-supported government campaign to eradicate measles and polio has vaccinated over 5.6 million children in Afghanistan over the past two weeks, and organizers are stressing the need for more funds to complete the effort next month.