The WHO policy brief on COVID-19 infodemic management outlines key actions for countries to consider when developing infodemic management policies, focusing on opportunities for strengthening and supporting such a network of actors.
The policy brief on infodemic management can be used by health authorities to support the development of a comprehensive infodemic management strategy, adapted to their country that leverages these activities efficiently. The brief highlights the importance of equipping health workers with skills to address health misinformation and the need for designated infodemic management teams to generate rapid actionable insights for health systems.
The policy brief is available in all official WHO languages.
The key points in the policy brief: 1. Train health workers, who are often the most trusted source of health information, to better identify and address health misinformation. 2. Tailor health, information and digital literacy initiatives to specific populations, and seek to debunk misinformation before it is widely disseminated through digital media and other channels. 3. Strive to develop high-quality, accessible health information in different digital formats designed for reuse, remixing and sharing and for rapid digital spread through social networks. 4. Establish an infodemic workforce for rapid infodemic insights generation and response, if necessary, by training staff to fulfil these functions; and ensure this function is clearly linked to and aligned with risk communications and community engagement efforts…more
Background Evidence has been accumulating that community health workers (CHWs) providing evidence–based interventions as part of community–based primary health care (CBPHC) can lead to reductions in maternal, neonatal and child mortality. However, investments to strengthen and scale–up CHW programs still remain modest.
Methods We used the Lives Saved Tool (LiST) to estimate the number of maternal, neonatal and child deaths and stillbirths that could be prevented if 73 countries effectively scaled up the population coverage of 30 evidence–based interventions that CHWs can deliver in these high–burden countries. We set population coverage targets at 50%, 70%, and 90% and summed the country–level results by region and by all high–burden countries combined. We also estimated which specific interventions would save the most lives.
Findings LiST estimates that a total of 3.0 (sensitivity bounds 1.8–4.0), 4.9 (3.1–6.3) and 6.9 (3.7–8.7) million deaths would be prevented between 2016 and 2020 if CBPHC is gradually scaled up during this period and if coverage of key interventions reaches 50%, 70%, and 90% respectively. There would be 14%, 23%, and 32% fewer deaths in the final year compared to a scenario assuming no intervention coverage scale up. The Africa Region would receive the most benefit by far: 58% of the lives saved at 90% coverage would be in this region. The interventions contributing the greatest impact are nutritional interventions during pregnancy, treatment of malaria with artemisinin compounds, oral rehydration solution for childhood diarrhea, hand washing with soap, and oral antibiotics for pneumonia.
Conclusions Scaling up CHW programming to increase population–level coverage of life–saving interventions represents a very promising strategy to achieve universal health coverage and end preventable maternal and child deaths by 2030. Numerous practical challenges must be overcome, but there is no better alternative at present. Expanding the coverage of key interventions for maternal nutrition and treatment of childhood illnesses, in particular, may produce the greatest gains. Recognizing the millions of lives of mothers and their young offspring that could
be achieved by expanding coverage of evidence–based interventions provided by CHWs and strengthening the CBPHC systems that support them underscores the pressing need for commitment from governments and donors over the next 15 years to prioritize funding, so that robust CHW platforms can be refined, strengthened, and expanded... more
With the burden of cardiovascular disease, mental and neurological disorders and diabetes rising in the region, African health ministers on Tuesday, endorsed a new strategy to boost access to the diagnosis, treatment and care of severe noncommunicable diseases.
The health ministers, gathering for the seventy-second session of the UN World Health Organization (WHO) Regional Committee for Africa in Lomé, Togo, adopted the strategy, known as PEN-PLUS. That plan will be implemented as a regional strategy to address severe noncommunicable diseases at first-level referral health facilities. The strategy supports building the capacity of district hospitals and other first-level referral facilities to diagnose and manage severe noncommunicable diseases…more
The World Health Organization (WHO) has published its first guideline for Ebola virus disease therapeutics, with new strong recommendations for the use of two monoclonal antibodies. WHO calls on the global community to increase access to these lifesaving medicines.
Ebola is a severe and too often fatal illness caused by the Ebola virus. Previous Ebola outbreaks and responses have shown that early diagnosis and treatment with optimized supportive care —with fluid and electrolyte repletion and treatment of symptoms—significantly improve survival. Now, following a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized clinical trials of therapeutics for the disease, WHO has made strong recommendations for two monoclonal antibody treatments: mAb114 (Ansuvimab; Ebanga) and REGN-EB3 (Inmazeb)…
The new guidance complements clinical care guidance that outlines the optimized supportive care Ebola patients should receive, from the relevant tests to administer, to managing pain, nutrition and co-infections, and other approaches that put the patient on the best path to recovery.
Dr Richard Kojan, co-chair of the Guideline Development Group… “As with other infectious diseases, timeliness is key, and people should not hesitate to consult health workers as quickly as possible to ensure they receive the best care possible.”…
There is also a recommendation on therapeutics that should not be used to treat patients: these include ZMapp and remdesivir...more
WHO/Europe training course on noncommunicable diseases 2022
30 August is the last day to register for the WHO/Europe training course on noncommunicable diseases 2022
If you are a researcher, policy maker or postgraduate scholar with an interest in noncommunicable diseases (NCDs), you have an opportunity to take part in a unique WHO training course developed for early or mid-career health professionals. The course will enable participants to:
understand novel challenges in the area of NCDs, and work on solution-oriented approaches to tackle the burden of NCDs; acquire skills in developing NCD prevention approaches; gather, analyze and publish NCD-related data; build capacity and learn how to transfer research into policy-related contexts; and network with colleagues.
The course is jointly developed by the WHO European Office for the Prevention and Control of Noncommunicable Diseases (NCD Office), WHO collaborating centres and partner organizations. Please feel free to share the information on the WHO NCD training course 2022 among your professional networks.
The guidelines outline a public health response to HIV, viral hepatitis and sexually transmitted infections (STIs) for 5 key populations (men who have sex with men, trans and gender diverse people, sex workers, people who inject drugs and people in prisons and other closed settings)…
“The new data from UNAIDS show that around 70% of new HIV infections occur among key populations and their partners…” said Meg Doherty, Director of WHO’s Global HIV, Hepatitis and STI Programmes…
These guidelines also acknowledge that behavioural interventions aimed at changing behaviours – which tend to be prioritized in many settings – have no impact on incidence of HIV, viral hepatitis and STIs or on behaviour change…more
With apologies for cross-posting, sharing this invitation for a consultation on the WHO Foundation’s strategy document for those of you who might be interested. The attached invitation notes that the draft strategy will be shared with registered participants ahead of the virtual consultation.
If you are interested, please register by August 19 for one of the two sessions:
Globally, only half of children living with HIV are on life-saving treatment. UNAIDS, UNICEF, and WHO have brought together a new alliance to fix one of the most glaring disparities in the AIDS response…more
The health and lives of people in the greater Horn of Africa are threatened as the region faces an unprecedented food crisis. In order to carry out urgent, life-saving work, WHO is launching a funding appeal for US$ 123.7 million…more
The Fifth Global Forum on Human Resources for Health will be held from 3 to 5 April 2023. The format of the Forum will be hybrid, to enable virtual and in-person sessions and will be hosted from the Auditorium of the WHO headquarters in Geneva. The Forum will be held under the theme of Protecting, safeguarding, and investing in the health and care workforce. Marking more than five years since the adoption of the Global Strategy on Human Resources for Health: Workforce 2030, the Forum will provide updates on progress in its implementation and share evidence and experiences on workforce development, as well as opportunities for a post COVID-19 era that will inform the implementation of the Working for Health 2022-2030 Action Plan (2022-2030). It will examine the required policy solutions, investments, and multi-sectoral partnerships to address health and care workforce challenges and advance health systems towards universal health coverage and health security. The outcomes of the Forum will inform the United Nations General Assembly’s High-Level Meeting on UHC in September 2023.
The Forum is intersectoral and will engage participation from a range of actors, including high-impact decision-makers, across education, finance, gender, health, labour/employment, and migration sectors. In person participation will be for speakers participating in the high-level roundtable dialogue. Technical sessions and other learning and networking activities will be available upon registration through an IT platform dedicated for the Forum.
The language of the Forum will be English with simultaneous interpretation available in Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian and Spanish, for the high-level roundtables.
The largest sustained decline in childhood vaccinations in approximately 30 years has been recorded in official data published today by WHO and UNICEF.
The percentage of children who received three doses of the vaccine against diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis (DTP3) – a marker for immunization coverage within and across countries – fell 5 percentage points between 2019 and 2021 to 81 per cent.
As a result, 25 million children missed out on one or more doses of DTP through routine immunization services in 2021 alone. This is 2 million more than those who missed out in 2020 and 6 million more than in 2019, highlighting the growing number of children at risk from devastating but preventable diseases. The decline was due to many factors including an increased number of children living in conflict and fragile settings where immunization access is often challenging, increased misinformation and COVID-19 related issues such as service and supply chain disruptions, resource diversion to response efforts, and containment measures that limited immunization service access and availability…more
Greetings from the WHO Patient Safety Flagship in Geneva.
The COVID-19 pandemic has profoundly impacted nearly all countries’ health systems and diminished their capability to provide safe health care, specifically due to errors, harm and delays in diagnosis, treatment and care management. In preparation for the forthcoming fifth Global Ministerial Summits on Patient Safety, scheduled to be held on 23-24 February 2023 in Montreux, Switzerland as the host country, has been working with WHO to better understand the implications of the COVID-19 pandemic for patient safety.
As part of this ongoing initiative, WHO Patient Safety Flagship is planning to launch the publication “Implication of the COVID-19 Pandemic for Patient Safety: A Rapid Review”, in a virtual event on Tuesday, 09 August 2022, 14:00-15:30 (CEST).
The objectives of this event are to:
– provide an overview of implications of the COVID-19 pandemic for patients, health workers, and the general public
– highlight the importance of managing risks and addressing avoidable harm in a pandemic situation
– discuss implications of the pandemic for patient safety within the broader context of preparedness, response and recovery
– lay the foundation for follow-up work around generating more robust evidence and supporting countries in their efforts to build resilient and safer health care systems.
We hope that you join us for this event on Tuesday, 09 August 2022 at 14:00-15:30 CEST.
The global monkeypox outbreak has been declared a public health emergency of international concern by the World Health Organization (WHO) – the strongest call to action the agency can make.
It is the seventh time such a declaration has been made since 2009, the most recent being for Covid-19, which was given the same label by the WHO in 2020, and follows a meeting of a committee of experts on Thursday…more