UNICEF says it is fighting "one of the worst ever" outbreaks of cholera in West and Central Africa that has made over 85, 000 people sick and killed 2, 466 people so far this year. The magnitude of the outbreaks mean this part of the world is facing one of the most devastating epidemics in its history, the United Nations agency added. CFRs (case fatality rates) are alarmingly high, UNICEF warned, ranging from 2.3% to 4.7% in many areas, and possibly up to 22% in some parts of Cameroon. Young children are especially susceptible to cholera complications because they dehydrate more rapidly than adults - those at most risk are malnourished children. This year, Cameroon, western Democratic Republic of Congo (DCR), and Chad have had the highest increases in cholera incidence. UNICEF wrote in a communiquÃ today: "In addition there are still challenges with getting access, ensuring staff presence in medical facilities and establishing surveillance systems to monitor cases and numbers in parts of North-East DRC.
Becoming a first aider is not a big deal, you give a small amount of time to learn knowledge and skill, but it could one day make a difference and save a life. This article gives one or two examples of where basic first aid knowledge, administered in a few crucial minutes has saved lives, dispels some common myths about first aid and how one charity is raising awareness through their "Be the Difference" campaign (including a neat iPhone app so you can carry first aid knowledge around with you). It finishes off with some advice on how to choose a first aid course and what to put in a basic first aid kit. First Aid in Action My earliest memory of first aid in action was as a child in the 1960s. It was a hot day, and I was in the shallow end of a busy outdoor pool when suddenly there was a piercing scream: I looked round, as did dozens of other children and adults, to see a very distressed mother clutching her little girl's still, blue body.
13th October marked the United Nations International Day for Disaster Reduction; the focus of this year's awareness day is on the valuable contribution that children can make in reducing the impact of natural disasters and in making decisions that can safeguard both their lives and the lives of people in their community. In a recent fact sheet published by the UK Health Protection Agency collaborators from the World Health Organization (WHO) and Save the Children address the impact of natural disaster on child health, such as information on the causes of neonatal mortality and risk of infections in the aftermath of a disaster. The information is also available on the HPA website and can be used by aid workers, local authorities and charities in order reduce the impact of disasters on public health.
At the 51st Directing Council of the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO), in Washington, D.C., health leaders from across the western hemisphere supported a plan that aims to accelerate reductions in maternal mortality, increase awareness of maternal morbidity and mortality, and prevent serious maternal morbidity in the Americas. According to PAHO, approximately 9, 500 women die in the Caribbean and Latin America annually due to pregnancy-related causes. PAHO/WHO professionals say that as many as 95% of the deaths in these areas can be prevented by using knowledge that is already available. PAHO Director Dr. Mirta Roses, explains: "This makes maternal deaths unacceptable in the Region of the Americas. Governments should mobilize the necessary efforts to prevent these deaths.
Oil Spill More Stressful For Many Coastal Residents Due To Their Strong Attachment To Local Communities
A major concern related to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill of 2010 was the impact on people living in coastal areas. News reports provided anecdotal evidence that those living along the coast and reliant on the fishing or oil and gas industries for their livelihoods were very distressed and worried about the impact of the spill on their future. Two decades of social science research has reported that people who are more attached to their communities are better off. They are happier, less depressed and physically healthier than those who have weak attachments to their community. It therefore seemed likely that in south Louisiana, a place where people tend to stay for generations, being strongly attached to the local community would help insulate people from the stress related to dealing with the oil spill.