WHO & Regional Offices [to 11 March 2017]

WHO & Regional Offices [to 11 March 2017]

The cost of a polluted environment: 1.7 million child deaths a year, says WHO
News release
6 March 2017 | GENEVA – More than 1 in 4 deaths of children under 5 years of age are attributable to unhealthy environments. Every year, environmental risks – such as indoor and outdoor air pollution, second-hand smoke, unsafe water, lack of sanitation, and inadequate hygiene – take the lives of 1.7 million children under 5 years, say two new WHO reports.
The first report, Inheriting a Sustainable World: Atlas on Children’s Health and the Environment reveals that a large portion of the most common causes of death among children aged 1 month to 5 years – diarrhoea, malaria and pneumonia – are preventable by interventions known to reduce environmental risks, such as access to safe water and clean cooking fuels.

“A polluted environment is a deadly one – particularly for young children,” says Dr Margaret Chan, WHO Director-General. “Their developing organs and immune systems, and smaller bodies and airways, make them especially vulnerable to dirty air and water.”…

Harmful exposures can start in the mother’s womb and increase the risk of premature birth. Additionally, when infants and pre-schoolers are exposed to indoor and outdoor air pollution and second-hand smoke they have an increased risk of pneumonia in childhood, and a lifelong increased risk of chronic respiratory diseases, such as asthma. Exposure to air pollution may also increase their lifelong risk of heart disease, stroke and cancer.

Top 5 causes of death in children under 5 years linked to the environment
A companion report, Don’t pollute my future! The impact of the environment on children’s health, provides a comprehensive overview of the environment’s impact on children’s health, illustrating the scale of the challenge.
Every year:
:: 570,000 children under 5 years die from respiratory infections, such as pneumonia, attributable to indoor and outdoor air pollution, and second-hand smoke.
:: 361,000 children under 5 years die due to diarrhoea, as a result of poor access to clean water, sanitation, and hygiene.
: 270,000 children die during their first month of life from conditions, including prematurity, which could be prevented through access to clean water, sanitation, and hygiene in health facilities as well as reducing air pollution.
:: 200,000 deaths of children under 5 years from malaria could be prevented through environmental actions, such as reducing breeding sites of mosquitoes or covering drinking-water storage.
:: 200,000 children under 5 years die from unintentional injuries attributable to the environment, such as poisoning, falls, and drowning…


Women who decide on their health have brighter futures
Dr Flavia Bustreo,
Assistant Director-General of the World Health Organization and Vice-Chair of GAVI, the Vaccine Alliance
8 March 2017
Access to contraception can allow adolescent girls and women to stay in school longer, opening up better economic opportunities and more independent, fulfilling futures. Every additional year of schooling for a girl increases her future earnings by 10% to 20%. On International Women’s Day, WHO calls for unequivocal commitment to gender equality and women’s and girls’ fundamental rights…


Disease outbreak news
:: Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) – Saudi Arabia 10 March 2017
:: Lassa Fever – Benin, Togo and Burkina Faso 10 March 2017
:: Yellow fever – Brazil 6 March 2017


:: WHO Regional Offices
Selected Press Releases, Announcements
WHO African Region AFRO
No new digest content identified for this edition.

WHO Region of the Americas PAHO
:: WHO publishes list of bacteria for which new antibiotics are urgently needed (02/27/2017)

WHO South-East Asia Region SEARO
:: Empower women in the workplace, advance health and development across South-East Asia
8 March 2017 – Workforce participation and economic empowerment is a powerful tool for women to achieve greater control of their health and wellbeing.
Women that work and are economically empowered tend to be better placed to make critical life choices, including on reproduction. They are also more likely to be able to seek out and access health care for themselves and their families.
On International Women’s Day, let’s commit to a brighter, healthier future for girls and women. Let’s commit to empowering women in the workplace and advancing health and development across the South-East Asia Region.

WHO European Region EURO
:: International Women’s Day: unlocking the full potential of women at work in the European Region 08-03-2017
:: Danish parliamentarians go to work with a hearing impairment on World Hearing Day 2017 07-03-2017
:: Regional Director outlines links between WHO/Europe’s work to address NCDs and JA-CHRODIS 07-03-2017

WHO Eastern Mediterranean Region EMRO
:: Kidney patients struggle as Yemeni health crisis worsens 9 March 2017.
:: The UN system in the Arab/MENA Region kicks off International Women’s Day with an eye on Planet 50-50 by 2030 8 March 2017
:: WHO support saves lives of malnourished children in Syria 8 March 2017

WHO Western Pacific Region
:: Gender equality makes everyone healthier: WHO
MANILA, 6 March 2017 – On International Women’s Day (8 March), the World Health Organization (WHO) will focus on the powerful link between gender equality and health and well-being. Public health efforts for women used to focus mainly on pregnancy and childbirth. Now gender, equity and human rights concerns are woven into every aspect of WHO’s work in the Western Pacific Region. “International Women’s Day is a great opportunity to challenge the unequal systems and practices that perpetuate health inequalities,” said Dr Shin Young-soo, WHO Regional Director for the Western Pacific.


CDC/ACIP [to 11 March 2017]
Media Statement
FRIDAY, MARCH 10, 2017
CDC updates Zika travel guidance for pregnant women to not travel to any area with Zika risk
CDC has updated its Zika travel guidance and now recommends that pregnant women not travel to any area where there is a risk of Zika virus infection, including areas where the virus has been newly introduced or reintroduced and local mosquito-borne transmission is ongoing; areas where the virus was present before 2015 (endemic) and there is no evidence transmission has stopped; and areas where the virus is likely to be circulating but has not been documented.
To help pregnant women and others identify areas of Zika risk, CDC published a new interactive World Map of Areas with Zika Risk …

Media Statement
FRIDAY, MARCH 10, 2017
CDC adds 4 countries to interim travel guidance related to Zika virus
CDC is working with other public health officials to monitor for ongoing spread of Zika virus?. Today, CDC posted a Zika virus travel notice for Angola, Guinea-Bissau, Maldives and Solomon Islands…

Media Statement
CDC: Outbreak of North American avian influenza A(H7N9) in poultry poses low risk to people
CDC is working closely with USDA APHIS and the Tennessee Department of Health to minimize any human health risk posed by the avian influenza outbreak in Lincoln County, Tennessee.


MMWR Weekly March 10, 2017 / No. 7
:: Confidentiality Issues and Use of Sexually Transmitted Disease Services Among Sexually Experienced Persons Aged 15–25 Years — United States, 2013–2015
:: Increase in Human Infections with Avian Influenza A(H7N9) Virus During the Fifth Epidemic — China, October 2016–February 2017