Global Health Highlights: 2016

Global Health News

November 2016

Global Health Highlights

Health Systems Benchmarking Tool

Donors and country health planners need to compare the performance of country health systems to make informed investments and decisions, and until now, there were no global tools available to make these comparisons. The U.S. Agency for International Development’s (USAID's) Health System Benchmarking Tool (HSBT) is designed to help health systems managers and administrators, policy makers, and monitoring and evaluation experts to standardize the process of tracking health systems indicators and provide answers to policy and programmatic questions. Indicators include low-and middle-income countries’, focus on ending preventable child and maternal deaths, achieving an AIDS-free generation, and protecting communities from infectious diseases.

HSBT can highlight a health system’s strengths and weaknesses in comparison with countries that have similar socio-economic, demographic, or gender empowerment characteristics.

Additional highlights of HSBT:

  • Displays data sets for 142 countries covering socio-economic, demographic, and gender and health system functions, outcomes, and impact indicators (2000–2014).
  • Allows for comparison of indicator(s) over time by countries, countries within regions, and countries by income groups.
  • Recognizes trends in health system indicators from 2000 to 2014.
  • Can identify countries with best and worst health system indicators by region, income group, or by a selected group of countries
  • The data set can be imported in any statistical software for inferential analysis.

Ending Preventable Maternal and Child Deaths

Global Health News

Screen grab from cover of Midwives'  Voices Midwives Realities

Midwives Voices, Midwives Realities:

The first-ever, ground breaking global survey of midwives conducted by the World Health Organization shows that more than a third (37 percent) of polled midwives in 93 countries have experienced harassment at work. Discrimination, harassment, and lack of respect are key barriers hindering midwives’ ability to provide lifesaving, quality care to women and newborns. View the report.

Blog: The Importance of Newborn Health in Humanitarian Situations:

Read a blog co-authored by Assistant Administrator for Global Health Ariel Pablos-Méndez and Robert Clay of Save the Children.

Infographic: 5 Ways to Improve Nutrition Through Agriculture:

Agriculture plays an important role in providing nutritious foods and sustainable livelihoods. By addressing these opportunities in current and new agricultural activities, USAID and its implementing partners can contribute more effectively to better nutrition. View the infographic.

Buying Condoms? Contraceptive Questions? Ask Your Hairdresser.

For World Contraception Day in September, we shared how we are working to get family planning information to women in Guinea.Take a look at this photo essay showcasing a hair salon where women can go to get a new ‘do...and answers to their questions about contraception.

Admiral Ziemer's Fall Message

Admiral Timothy Ziemer, U.S. global malaria coordinator, shares updates on the President's Malaria Initiative's work this fall and describes attending the Global Fund Replenishment Conference in Montreal and the Session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York.

Creating an AIDS-free Generation

HIV30x30 Campaign

2016 marks USAID's 30-year investment in the fight against HIV and AIDS. To highlight this milestone, USAID's Office of HIV/AIDS recently launched a social media campaign called #HIV30x30. During the month of October, submissions that reflected USAID’s 30 years of working to combat HIV and AIDS were crowd-sourced from partners, advocates and stakeholders. The campaign officially launched November 1 and will run up to World AIDS Day on December 1. Each day during November, USAID's Global Health Twitter account will post one photo, graphic or quote that represents the last 3 decades of USAID's work in combating the epidemic. On December 1, we will share an electronic photo quilt that will capture all submissions. Discover the #HIV30x30 campaign here.

International AIDS Conference in Durban

The Office of HIV/AIDS (OHA) had a significant presence at the 21st annual International AIDS Society Conference (AIDS 2016) in Durban, South Africa, July 18–22, 2016. To help amplify USAID’s presence at the conference, the OHA Communications team developed both a digital and print conference overview guide and conference website to amplify OHA's technical priorities and initiatives and highlight USAID partner and staff presentations at AIDS 2016. Coverage of the conference included live tweeting of conference sessions and conducting a Facebook live session with OHA Office Director David Stanton on research and rights. Following the conference, a special highlights edition of the OHA quarterly digital newsletter, Inside OHA, summarized major conference news and events, sessions and announcements was shared with more than 78,000 readers.

OHA Research Blog Launched

The Office of HIV/AIDS (OHA) launched a new blog platform in May 2016 specifically for its Research Division. The OHA Research Blog showcases the complex realities of HIV research through the honest, experienced perspectives and insights of OHA's strong scientific staff. Blog posts feature technical staff's personal perspectives on implementation science, microbicides, vaccines, and much more. Read the blog.

Protecting Communities from Infectious Diseases

Global Health News

Neglected Tropical Diseases 10th Anniversary

The year 2016 marks the 10th year anniversary of the USAID Neglected Tropical Disease (NTD) Program. Over the past decade, the NTD Program has supported the delivery of more than 1.6 billion treatments leveraging $11.1 billion in donated drugs in 31 countries. This program represents an outstanding example of what can be achieved through public-private partnerships. Ten years ago, the USAID NTD Program delivered 36 million treatments to people in need. Now, in 2016, the program has expanded, delivering 299 million treatments each year.

Over 300 global partners came together at the Newseum on September 30, 2016, for a special event commemorating the 10th anniversary of the USAID NTD Program.

USAID at the 47th Union World Conference on Lung Health

USAID's Tuberculosis Division represented USAID at more than a dozen formal events, including chairing seven symposia, at the 47th Union World Conference on Lung Health in Liverpool, UK, from October 26-29, 2016. The team was called upon to share their expertise on a gamut of topics, including lessons and best practices in urban TB, shortened regimens for multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB), TB transmission control, and the magnitude and scope of TB stigma. Beyond the formal conference events, the team was also heavily involved in a number of side events including the pre-conference WHO TB Symposium as well as a TB Town Hall we supported with our partners at the Stop TB Partnership, WHO, and the Global Fund. The TB Division capped off our time in Liverpool with a two-day training for USAID mission staff and in-country advisors.

WHO Global Tuberculosis Report 2016

On October 13th, USAID Assistant Administrator for Global Health Dr. Ariel Pablos-Méndez joined World Health Organization (WHO) Global Programme Director Dr. Mario Ravigilone in a WHO press event launching the WHO Global Tuberculosis Report 2016 [PDF, 6.4MB]. Additionally, Pablos-Méndez, Ravigilone, and UN Special Envoy on Tuberculosis Dr. Eric Goosby published an op-ed in the Huffington Post about MDR-TB and the global antimicrobial resistance crisis.

Ending the Tuberculosis Epidemic:

A young girl holds up a vial of a red liquid

Global Virome Project

The Global Virome Project (GVP) is a proposed global initiative conceptualized by USAID to map all of the planet's "high consequence" viral threats over the next 10 years at a total cost of $3.4 billion. The GVP builds upon methods and lessons learned under USAID's Emerging Pandemic Threats (EPT) program. The GVP represents a dramatic step towards "knowing our viral enemy". With global support for the GVP, the world could be significantly more prepared to deal with the consequences of escalating spillover of deadly viruses. It will result in the first comprehensive catalog of the planet's highest priority pathogens, permitting prophylactic countermeasure development well in advance of future epidemic events. In just 10 years, the world could be significantly more prepared to deal with the consequences of escalating spillover of deadly viruses. In short – it will be the beginning of the end of the Pandemic Era.

Photo sources for top banner left to right: James Pursey/EGPAF, Marcy Erskine/IFRC, Jameel Ahmad/JSI/PAIMAN.

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