University of Oxford takes great stride in fight against HIV with its launch of HIV vaccine trials

UK – Researchers from the University of Oxford have launched the first phase trials of a novel mosaic vaccine targeting a ‘broad range’ of HIV variants. The HIV-CORE 0052 trial, part of the European Aids Vaccine Initiative, will involve 13 healthy HIV-negative adults aged 18 to 65 years old who are not considered to be at a high risk of infection. Participants are expected to receive one dose of the vaccine known as the HIVconsvX followed by a further boost dose at four weeks. HIVconsvX, unlike other HIV vaccine candidates…

Read More

AstraZeneca’s acquisition of Alexion near completion following clearance from European Commission

UK – AstraZeneca, a British-Swedish multinational pharmaceutical and biotechnology company, is finally on course to secure Alexion, a pharma company that specializes in rare disease, following a go-ahead approval from European Commission (EC). The company sought to acquire Alexion for approximately US$39B last year in a bid to establish a specialist rare disease pipeline in its portfolio. EC’s clearance marks an important step towards AstraZeneca’s acquisition of Alexion as the two companies hope to be the leaders in immunology and precision medicines. The proposed acquisition has already received complete clearances…

Read More

Increased efficiency in manufacturing companies bolsters Tunisian pharmaceutical sector

TUNISIA – Tunisia is one of the few countries in Africa having a well-established pharmaceutical sector. They have efficient and modern pharmaceuticals and such medications are considered legal in other nations. This is further attributed to the fact that Tunisia and Morocco both follow international standards of medication. The presence of a generic population in high number is a key factor augmenting the growth of the Tunisia pharmaceutical market during the forecast period. Players of the global Tunisia pharmaceutical market are indulging in merger and acquisition strategies to gain an…

Read More

Steve Biko Hospital unveils mobile robot to join intensive care patient treatment team

South Africa – The Steve Biko Academic Hospital, a purely tertiary healthcare institution rendering specialized and highly specialized services to medically referred patients in South Africa, has welcomed a mobile robot called Stevie to help improve the treatment of patients during the COVID-19 pandemic. The hospital, which is the main teaching hospital of the University of Pretoria, launched Stevie at the its Intensive Care Unit (ICU). This robot will be vital in allowing for a bedside ward round attended by ICU teams across the globe, through instant live discussion and…

Read More

Canadian government injects funds to bolster fight against COVID-19 across Canada

CANADA – The Canadian government has disbursed funds to support vaccination efforts across Canada through the Immunization Partnership fund (IFP) as more Canadians are getting the jab against COVID-19. The IPF supports projects that improve access to vaccines and encourage vaccine uptake and is one of several programs by the Government of Canada working with communities to increase vaccine confidence and address barriers to getting vaccinated. These three new projects under the IPF are set to provide health care givers with the tools, training, and evidence-based information they need to…

Read More

Study shows inconsistency in Africa’s use of treated bed nets, hindering fight against Malaria

AFRICA – East Africa has been reporting mixed results in its use of and access to insecticide-treated bed nets (ITNs), which have been crucial in the fight against malaria infections since the 1990s. While Uganda and Kenya are mentioned positively in surveys on the use and distribution of ITNS, Tanzania and Burundi feature in lists of countries that are recording drops over the past 20 years. The “Maps and metrics of insecticide-treated net access, use, and nets-per-capita in Africa from 2000-2020” survey released on June 11, shows that only 14…

Read More

WHO gives new recommendations for screening and treatment of cervical cancer as decline in screening of breast and cervical cancer witnessed

SWITZERLAND – World Health Organization (WHO) and Human Reproduction Programme (HRP) have launched new guidelines to help countries make faster progress, more and equitably, on the screening and treatment of cancer. The guidelines includes some important shifts in WHO’s recommended approaches to cervical screening, and includes a total of 23 recommendations and 7 good practice statements. Among the 23 recommendations, 6 are identical for both the general population of women and for women living with HIV and 12 are different and specific for each population. For the 7 good practice…

Read More

Ivory Coast dispatches mobile clinics to speed up COVID vaccinations

COTE D’IVOIRE – Ivory Coast has begun sending mobile clinics to markets and other busy areas in its main city Abidjan in an effort to reinforce the vaccination campaign against COVID-19. After administering fewer than 800,000 doses since vaccinations began in March – enough for a single dose for just 3% of the population – Ivorian health authorities are now aiming to inoculate a million people in Abidjan over the next 10 days. The country has so far recorded 48,580 coronavirus cases, 47,970 recoveries and 315 fatalities. Like many African…

Read More

World Health Organization commits to advocate for women empowerment and health

SWITZERLAND – Following the General Equality Forum held last week in France, the world Health Organization (WHO) pledged it would commit to drive change for gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls in all their diversity. WHO said the newly formed task force will be committed to ending gender-based violence, advancing sexual & reproductive health & rights, and supporting health workers as well as feminist movements and leadership. The organization will partner with Wellspring, Ford Foundation, UN Women and the Government of the United Kingdom, in the launch…

Read More

South Sudan’s Health Care Remains Inadequate ten years after independence, Officials Say

South Sudan – As South Sudan celebrates 10 years of independence, health care workers and officials say the health care situation in the world’s newest nation remains woefully inadequate. Facilities are few and often inaccessible, they say, and violence continues to affect health care workers and communities.  Health officials say these shortfalls are largely due to insufficient government funding that has persisted since the nation’s 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement. Dr. Bol Deng, secretary-general of the South Sudan Doctors’ Union, said the situation was made worse by continued budget cuts, amplified…

Read More