Proponents of a sweeping World Trade Organization ‘waiver’ on intellectual property rights for all COVID-19 treatments, tests and vaccines face an uphill battle to reach consensus on a text ahead of a WTO General Council meeting scheduled for 27-28 July.  This is despite the recent agreement of the initiative’s opponents, including the European Union, Korea, […] Continue reading ->
From Indonesia and the Seychelles, to Chile and China itself, there are some worrisome indications that the Chinese Sinopharm and Sinovac COVID vaccines sold by the hundreds of millions to vaccine-strapped low- and middle-income countries may not be performing as well as expected – particularly against rapidly spreading variants of SARS-CoV-2.   At the same time, […] Continue reading ->
The Indian Bar Association (IBA), a voluntary organisation, say it has served a second legal notice to WHO Chief Scientist Soumya Swaminathan for allegedly “running a disinformation campaign against Ivermectin”, after WHO failed to recommend use of the anti-parasitic drug as a COVID-19 treatment – due to a lack of evidence of efficacy. The Mumbai-based […] Continue reading ->
Children’s rights activists and anti-tobacco campaigners called on governments this week to implement stricter laws, impose hefty fines and carry out public campaigns to eradicate child labor in tobacco value chains. With an estimated 1.3 million children working in tobacco fields around the world, Adriana Blanco Marquizo, head of the Secretariat of WHO’s  Framework Convention […] Continue reading ->
Uganda is suffering an acute shortage of oxygen and intensive care beds as the country grapples with a deadly second wave of the pandemic that is being fuelled by five different virus variants. Regional referral hospitals and the country’s biggest hospital, Mulago National Referral Hospital, have run out of oxygen or have reported acute shortages,  […] Continue reading ->
The government of Guinea is a few days away from declaring the end of the country’s Ebola outbreak after 45 days of reporting no new case, World Health Organization Officials said on Thursday.  On 14 February, a new Ebola outbreak was declared in Guinea, but four months later, the outbreak will be declared over according […] Continue reading ->
A COVID-19 antibody cocktail developed by the US-based company, Regeneron, dramatically reduced the risk of mortality and shortened hospital stays in patients who didn’t naturally produce antibodies against SARS-CoV2 in a recent large-scale trial.  Meanwhile, the US government announced that it would invest some US$3.2 billion in developing new forms of antiviral COVID-19 treatments to […] Continue reading ->
Despite the global decline in  COVID-19 cases by 12% over the last week, countries in Central and South America continue to be epicenters of pandemic, with high mortality rates and insufficient access to vaccines.  Over 1.1 million new COVID-19 cases and 31,000 deaths were reported in the Americas over the last week, officials from the […] Continue reading ->