For the first time since a cholera epidemic believed to be imported by the United Nations peacekeepers began killing thousands of Haitians nearly six years ago, the office of Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has acknowledged that the United Nations played a role in the initial outbreak and that a “significant new set of U.N. actions” will be needed to respond to the crisis.
Health officials in the United Kingdom have reported a progressive increase in cases of the deadly bacterium, Meningitis W (MenW), prompting calls for university students to get vaccinated. Cases of MenW have been increasing year-on-year, from 22 cases in 2009 to over 200 cases in the past 12 months, according to Public Health England.
A devastating livestock disease is continuing to extend its global reach and is now present in 76 countries. Georgia recently reported its first-ever case of Peste des Petits Ruminants (PPR), a viral disease which is capable of severely impacting goat and sheep populations, while a new outbreak has occurred in the Maldives, showing that even island states are vulnerable to the plague.
The rapid warming of the Antarctic Peninsula, which occurred from the early-1950s to the late 1990s, has paused. Stabilisation of the ozone hole along with natural climate variability were significant in bringing about the change. Together these influences have now caused the northern part of the peninsula to enter a temporary cooling phase.
Brazilian soldiers were on the streets last Saturday, checking out spots around the city that will get intense security when the Rio de Janeiro Olympics open in under four weeks. Armored vehicles and trucks carrying troops were accompanied by soldiers decked out in camouflage gear and matching helmets, with rifles slung over their shoulders. The soldiers covered the city, from Copacabana Beach to the central train station and the renovated port area.
The Pan American Health Organization/ World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO) congratulated n Friday the Government of Uruguay for winning an international legal case brought by the Philip Morris tobacco company. Philip Morris challenged tobacco control regulations implemented by Uruguay in compliance with its obligations under the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC), the world's first international public health treaty negotiated under the auspices of WHO.
Uruguay won on Friday an arbitration case against US tobacco giant Philip Morris, which sued the state claiming its strict anti-tobacco law harmed the cigarette maker's business, both sides said. Philip Morris argued that Uruguay had violated terms of a bilateral investment treaty with Switzerland, where it has its main headquarters.
In a historic public health victory that will be felt around the world, Uruguay has won an international legal battle against Philip Morris International to uphold its strong laws to reduce tobacco use. The event was underlined by international philanthropies, which also supported Uruguay during the litigation.
Nearly thirty years after an international treaty banned the use of chlorofluorocarbons, the Antarctic ozone hole is finally starting to heal. By mid to late century, it should be fully recovered.
An international Working Group of 23 scientists convened by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), the cancer agency of the World Health Organization (WHO), has evaluated the carcinogenicity of drinking coffee, mate, and very hot beverages.