Health organizations

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Lessons from Nigeria: the fight against counterfeit drugs in Africa

The sale of counterfeit products is a problem in most countries. Every year, about 7% of world trade, valued at about 280 billion USD, is lost due to counterfeiting. In the information technology sector, products worth an estimated 20 billion USD are currently in circulation. But the huge financial losses incurred by manufacturers and individual customers as a result of the trafficking of fake goods are overshadowed by the tragic human costs: the pharmaceutical industry, and consequently the marketplace, are flooded with counterfeits.

Focus on the front line: l'Association Malienne de Lutte contre le Diabète

Contrary to the now outdated idea of diabetes as a disease of rich people in rich countries, the condition is increasingly widespread in Africa. Mali, the second-largest country in West Africa, bordering the Sahara desert to the north and Côte d’Ivoire and Senegal to the south, has not escaped the budding epidemic of type 2 diabetes. Overall prevalence is thought to exceed 2% – nearly a quarter of a million people. Most of these have type 2 diabetes and live in the urban areas.

Focus on the front line: Diabetes South Africa

Diabetes is emerging as a serious public-health problem in South Africa, particularly in the urban areas, where social welfare and health systems are precarious, and there is a lack of access to appropriate health information. Diabetes South Africa (DSA), established in 1969, advocates for the rights of all people with diabetes in the country.

Promoting global action on the social determinants of health

Throughout the world, socially disadvantaged people with inadequate access to health resources suffer worse health status and die younger than people in more privileged social positions. Yet although the greatest share of health problems is attributable to living conditions, health policies are dominated by disease-focused solutions that largely ignore the social environment. As a result, inequalities have widened and health interventions have obtained less than optimal results.

Unite for Diabetes: the campaign for a UN Resolution

In 2003, a 16-year-old girl with diabetes had an idea which looks set to change the face of diabetes. Not long after his election as President-Elect of the International Diabetes Federation, Martin Silink was approached by Clare Rosenfeld, who spoke of her dream of a United Nations Resolution on diabetes. Inspired by Clare’s dream, Martin Silink spent the subsequent two years gauging the opinion of the diabetes stakeholders and garnering worldwide support for a UN Resolution. He

Preventing vascular diseases in the emerging world: a multidisciplinary approach

From December 12-15, leaders from the International Society of Nephrology, the International Society of Hypertension, the World Heart Federation, the International Diabetes Federation, and the International Atherosclerosis Society met for a three-day conference on the prevention of vascular diseases, namely diabetes, kidney disease and cardiovascular disease. The aims of the meeting were to bring together all the vascular specialties to lay out the parameters of the chronic disease problem and seek ways to reduce their burden particularly in the developing world.

Advocacy for health: lessons from the anti-tobacco campaign

A newspaper columnist in the UK recently grumbled that, ‘The anti-smoking groundswell seems to have come from nowhere. Why didn’t it occur in 2000 or 1996 or 1986?’ He admitted to being a smoker, and wondered why he was becoming a ‘social pariah’. The reality, of course, is that the health risks of smoking have been known for more than a generation; that the health community has long been demanding a public policy approach to effective tobacco control, and that political change – especially concerning sensitive and contested issues – takes time.

Cost-effective tobacco control measures

Tobacco consumption is the second leading risk factor for death worldwide. It is estimated that currently 4.9 million people die each year due to tobacco-related diseases and, if current trends in tobacco consumption continue, this death toll will double in 20 years. As research continues into the effects of tobacco on health, the list of conditions that are caused or compounded by tobacco has expanded. There is nowadays evidence that almost every organ in the body is affected by tobacco smoking. Effective control of tobacco consumption has been seen in

Diabetes Action Now: putting diabetes on the international agenda

Diabetes Action Now, a joint initiative of the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) and the World Health Organization (WHO), aims to stimulate action to address the growing burden of diabetes, especially in low- and middle-income countries and communities. The programme, based at the World Health Organization offices in Geneva, Switzerland, is supported by WHO funds and a grant from the World Diabetes Foundation. As reported previously in Diabetes Voice, Diabetes Action

Project HOPE Mexico: empowering people to care for themselves and others

If current trends continue, within the next 10 years, a quarter of all people in Mexico will be living with diabetes. Diabetes already affects 12% of the general population and, astonishingly, one in three people over 65 years of age. Diabetes is the leading cause of blindness, kidney failure and lower-limb amputations. Indeed, in 2004, diabetes was declared the leading cause of death in Mexico due to its link

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