Archive for July 1st, 2015

01/07/2015

Cuba Becomes First Country to Halt Mother-to-child Transmission of HIV and Syphilis

Human Wrongs Watch

Cuba has become the world’s first country to eliminate mother-to-child transmission of HIV and syphilis, “a major victory in our long fight against HIV and sexually transmitted infections, and an important step towards having an AIDS-free generation,” the World Health Organization on 30 June 2015 announced.

PAHO-WHO have been working with partners in Cuba and other countries in the Americas to implement a regional initiative to eliminate mother-to-child transmission of HIV and syphilis. Photo: PAHO/WHO

“Eliminating transmission of a virus is one of the greatest public health achievements possible,” WHO Director-General Dr. Margaret Chan said in a news release validating Cuba’s achievement.

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01/07/2015

2.4 Billion People Worldwide Still Lack Basic Sanitation – UN Report

Human Wrongs Watch

United Nations agencies tracking access to water and sanitation targets against the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) on 30 June 2015 warned tthat the lack of progress on sanitation threatens to undermine the child survival and health benefits from gains in access to safe drinking water.

Two small children wash their hands with soap at a hand-washing station at the Sayariy Warmi early childhood development (ECD) centre in Sucre, Bolivia. Photo: UNICEF/NYHQ2013-1499/Pirozzi

According to the Joint Monitoring Programme report, Progress on Sanitation and Drinking Water: 2015 Update and MDG Assessment, released on 30 June by the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the World Health Organization (WHO), one in every three, or 2.4 billion people on the planet, are still without sanitation facilities – including 946 million people who defecate in the open.

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01/07/2015

Remember Haiti? Now UN Says That Cholera Eradication Will Take ‘Some Years’

Human Wrongs Watch

30 June 2015 – While some 16,000 new cases of cholera have been reported in Haiti so far this year, the disease is now under control but it will not be eradicated unless improving water and sanitation conditions are given a higher priority by both the Government and donors, says the outgoing United Nations official tasked with leading the response to the outbreak.

A water filtration systems programme in Haiti being demonstrated to community leaders (April 2014). UN Photo/Logan Abassi

“And in today’s world, in the 21st century, it’s not acceptable to have this huge number of cases of cholera,” Pedro Medrano Rojas said in an interview with the UN News Service, as he wrapped up his assignment as UN Senior Coordinator for the Response to Cholera in Haiti.*

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