Commentaries

The yellow fever vaccine given as one fifth of the regular dose could be used to control an outbreak in case of vaccine shortages. Experts agreed with this proposal at a meeting convened by WHO to consider potential shortages in yellow fever vaccine due to the outbreak in Angola and Democratic Republic of the Congo. WHO Strategic Advisory Group of Experts (SAGE) on Immunization reviewed existing evidence that demonstrates that using a fifth of a standard vaccine dose would still provide…
By Dr Matshidiso Moeti, 1 December 2015 As someone who has been involved in HIV/AIDS prevention and control for years, I vividly remember a time the epidemic seemed unsolvable, globally and in Africa. When I was working on HIV/AIDS at UNAIDS and the World Health Organization's Africa Regional Office in the late 1990s and early 2000s respectively, the outlook was certainly bleak. The global community was in the process of developing a coherent response to the epidemic, and successful…
Early next week, WHO will convene a panel of medical ethicists to explore the use of experimental treatment in the ongoing Ebola outbreak in West Africa. Currently there is no registered medicine or vaccine against the virus, but there are several experimental options under development. The recent treatment of two health workers from Samaritan’s Purse with experimental medicine has raised questions about whether medicine that has never been tested and shown to be safe in people should be used…
18 September 2014 -- Dr Margaret Chan welcomed the White House announcement of a major ramp-up in support for containing the Ebola outbreak in parts of west Africa. In the hardest-hit countries, the outbreak threatens to push governments to the brink of state failure. She announced a joint WHO/UN initiative to address the crisis, which has unprecedented humanitarian, political, economic, and security dimensions. As she noted, health, medical, and clinical issues remain the heart and soul of…
17 November 2015 Climate change is the defining issue for the 21st century. According to WHO estimates, climate change is already causing tens of thousands of deaths every year - from shifting patterns of disease, from extreme weather events, such as heat-waves and floods, and from the degradation of air quality, food and water supplies, and sanitation. The upcoming United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP-21) in Paris offers the world an important opportunity to not only reach a strong…
Par Dr Matshidiso Moeti, la Directrice régionale de l'Organisation mondiale de la santé pour l'Afrique, novembre 2016 Décembre 2013. Dans un village de la Guinée rurale, un enfant joue dans son jardin. Il tombe malade, et décède quelques jours plus tard. Cet enfant est la première personne à avoir contracté le virus Ebola. C’est le début d’une épidémie sans précédent. 28 000 personnes contaminées dans 10 pays, 11 000 morts. Les responsables de santé publique pensent que l’enfant a…