Kenya’s Covid positivity rate jumps to 18 percent with 1,006 new cases

KENYA – Kenya’s Covid-19 positivity rate has shot up to 18 percent as 1,006 new infections are recorded following analysis of 5,584 samples over the past 24 hours. Kenya’s positivity rate has been above 10 percent for the last few days, standing at 13.9 percent on Saturday, 12.2 percent on Sunday and 13.5 percent on Monday and 14.7 percent on Tuesday. Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe said the number of confirmed infections, since the first one last March, rose to 199,941 while the number of tests carried out so far…

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Acne Vulgaris’ therapy now gains Food & Drug Association approval

ISRAEL – The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved Sol-Gel Technologies’ (a dermatology company) drug Twyneo indicated for the treatment of acne vulgaris in adults and pediatric patients nine years of age and older. Sol-Gel has partnered with Galderma to commercialize Twyneo in the U.S and expects to receive a regulatory milestone payment in conjunction with this approval and retains the option to regain U.S. commercialization rights five years following first commercialization in the U.S. The New Drug Application (NDA) was supported by positive results from two Phase 3,…

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Undiagnosed, untreated hepatitis kills 124,000 Africans annually

AFRICA – The World Health Organisation (WHO) has reported that more than 124,000 Africans die each year as a result of undiagnosed and untreated hepatitis. Matshidiso Moeti, WHO Regional Director for Africa, said this in her message to commemorate World Hepatitis Day, aimed at increasing awareness of the disease under the theme: `Hepatitis can’t wait’. Ms Moeti said that the disease inflames the liver and can lead to liver cancer and cirrhosis, calling on all countries to rapidly improve access to services to prevent, diagnose and treat the disease. Hepatitis…

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Research shows AstraZeneca’s second dose doesn’t raise risk of rare blood clot

UK – A study has shown AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 shot did not increase the instances of rare blood clots with low platelets in people after the second dose. Data published in the Lancet medical journal found that the estimated rate of thrombosis with thrombocytopenia syndrome (TTS) after the second dose of the vaccine was 2.3 per million in those inoculated, comparable to the typical rate seen in those who have not been vaccinated. This research, led and funded by AstraZeneca, evaluated reported cases occurring within 14 days of administration of the…

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US to ship 4 million COVID-19 vaccine doses to Nigeria, 5.66 million to South Africa

AFRICA – The US government has announced they will ship close to 10 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines to two of the most populous African countries, Nigeria and South Africa, as the continent battles a third wave of infections. Four million doses of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine will go to Nigeria and 5.66 million doses of the Pfizer vaccine to South Africa, the officials said. This donation has a significant boost to SA’s immunization programme, which after a series of delays got off to a slower than anticipated start in…

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WHO commemorates world Hepatitis day as Saudi Arabia fights the silent scourging disease

WORLD – Today, WHO joins the global community in celebrating World Hepatitis Day with the theme “Hepatitis can’t wait”, calling on all countries to work together to eliminate viral hepatitis as a public health threat by 2030. Over 354 million people worldwide live with chronic hepatitis; over 8000 new infections of hepatitis B and C occur every day, and more than one million deaths from advanced liver disease and liver cancer occur every year. WHO recently launched first-ever global guidance for countries seeking to validate elimination of hepatitis B virus…

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SAMRC to receive 100,000 orient gene rapid antibody test kits

SOUTH AFRICA – The South Africa Medical Research Council (SARMC), which has been playing a central role in the South African response to the COVID-19 pandemic, facilitating dialogue and leading and supporting several major research studies is set to receive 100000 Covid-19 rapid test kits. This was made possible by the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority’s (SAHPRA) approved Alpha and Omega MedTech, a subsidiary of AOM Group – South Africa’s healthcare innovation company. According to the SAMRC, the two parties signed a donation agreement at the end of June.…

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WHO makes progress in fighting against tobacco epidemic, this is according to a recent report

SWITZERLAND – According to the released World Health Organization (WHO) report, more than four times as many people are now covered by at least one WHO-recommended tobacco control MPOWER measure as compared with 2007. The six MPOWER measures are monitoring tobacco use and preventive measures; protecting people from tobacco smoke; offering help to quit; warning about the dangers of tobacco; enforcing bans on advertising, promotion and sponsorship; and raising taxes on tobacco. Some 5.3 billion people are now covered by at least one of these measures more than four times…

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Angola battles soaring number of malaria cases as resistance to antimalarials grows

ANGOLA – At least 377,599 new cases of malaria have been registered in Angola’s northern province during the first half of this year, which resulted in the death of 268 people, the supervisor of the provincial program of fight against malaria, Luis Demba, has said. Demba explained that in comparison with the same period in 2020, there has been an increase in the number of cases and a reduction in the number of deaths. According to Angola’s Health Minister Silvia Lutucuta, the northern region, between January and May 2021, reported…

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UNICEF adds Sinovac to assortment of contracted COVID-19 vaccine suppliers

AFRICA – UNICEF has inked a long-term agreement with Sinovac for the supply of Sinovac Covid-19 vaccine, the CoronaVac inactivated virus vaccine against coronavirus, on behalf of COVAX. This is the 8th supply agreement UNICEF has signed for COVID-19 vaccines. Previous agreements have been announced with the Serum Institute of India, Pfizer, AstraZeneca, Human Vaccine, Moderna, Janssen Pharmaceutica NV and Sinopharm. Through the supply agreement, UNICEF will have access to up to 200 million doses of the vaccine in 2021 to supply participating countries and territories in the COVAX Facility’s Advance Market…

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