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WHO to vote on formalising a legally binding pandemic agreement; The latest health stories from around the world

Article by Lalita Panicker, Consulting Editor, Views and Editor, Insight, Hindustan Times, New Delhi  At the end of May, 194 member states of the World Health Organization (WHO) will meet for the World Health Assembly. Negotiations underway now will determine whether they vote then to adopt a pandemic agreement. www.science.org/doi/10.1126/science.adq1055?utm_source=sfmc&utm_medium=email&utm_content=alert&utm_campaign=SCIeToc&et_rid=785235729&et_cid=5199970  For the past 2 years, …

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Texas reports first confirmed case of bird flu in humans; The latest health stories from around the world

Article by Lalita Panicker, Consulting Editor, Views and Editor, Insight, Hindustan Times, New Delhi  Texas officials today issued a “health alert” about the first confirmed case of a human infection with a bird influenza virus that has found its ways into dairy cows in the US. The worker developed conjunctivitis, a mild eye infection that frequently occurs …

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Developing nations seek reassurance on the WHO Pandemic Agreement; The latest health stories from around the world

Article by Lalita Panicker, Consulting Editor, Views and Editor, Insight, Hindustan Times, New Delhi  “Me first”—that’s how Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, head of the World Health Organization (WHO), described the wealthy world’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic when he kicked off negotiations for a global “pandemic treaty” in December 2021. Even before vaccines had proved safe …

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Malaria vaccine rolled out in Cameroon; The latest health stories from around the world

Article by Lalita Panicker, Consulting Editor, Views and Editor, Insight, Hindustan Times, New Delhi  After a 60-year quest, childhood malaria vaccinations were administered to infants and toddlers in Cameroon on 22 January, the world’s first routine immunization against the disease.  Remarkably, the RTS,S or Mosquirix, made by GlaxoSmithKline and approved for general use in 2021 …

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COVID-19 surge flying under the radar? The latest health stories from around the world

Article by Lalita Panicker, Consulting Editor, Views and Editor, Insight, Hindustan Times, New Delhi  Is a surge of COVID happening? With lots of folks taking at-home tests and not reporting the results, how do we know the data that’s out there is accurate?  “The most reliable data shows that a surge is happening,” says Jeremy Kamil, …

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WHO declares JN.1 COVID-19 variant a “variant of interest; The latest health stories from around the world

Article by Lalita Panicker, Consulting Editor, Views and Editor, Insight, Hindustan Times, New Delhi  For the first time since it declared an end to the global Public Health Emergency for COVID-19 on 05 May,  the World Health Organization (WHO) has called the COVID-19 variant JN.1 a standalone “variant of interest.” WHO has gone further to …

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Nobel Prize awarded for COVID-19 mRNA vaccine development; The latest health stories from around the world

Article by Lalita Panicker, Consulting Editor, Views and Editor, Insight, Hindustan Times, New Delhi The 2023 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine has been jointly awarded to Katalin Karikó and Drew Weissman for their discoveries concerning nucleoside base modifications that enabled the development of effective mRNA vaccines against COVID-19 https://www.nobelprize.org/prizes/medicine/2023/press-release/  The discoveries by the two …

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New monovalent COVID-19 vaccines approved in US; The latest health stories from around the world

Article by Lalita Panicker, Consulting Editor, Views and Editor, Insight, Hindustan Times, New Delhi  After the US Food and Drug Administration authorized new monovalent COVID vaccines on early last week, the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices backed the decision a day later with a nearly unanimous vote in favour of universal XBB-containing …

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WHO declares end to global mpox emergency; The latest health stories from around the world

Article by Lalita Panicker, Consulting Editor, Views and Editor, Insight, Hindustan Times, New Delhi The World Health Organization (WHO) ended the global health emergency for mpox, on 11 May, 10 months after it was declared, as cases have fallen dramatically in Europe and the Americas. www.science.org/content/article/who-ends-mpox-emergency? Caused by the monkeypox virus (MPXV), the painful and …

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WHO declares an end to COVID-19 emergency phase; The latest health stories from around the world

Article by Lalita Panicker, Consulting Editor, Views and Editor, Insight, Hindustan Times, New Delhi The World Health Organization (WHO) declared an end to the emergency phase of the COVID-19 pandemic, last Friday. The move is likely to usher the world into a new phase of disease monitoring with a scaling back of surveillance and available …

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