Bulletin of the World Health Organization

In this month's Bulletin

WHO 60th anniversary commemorative volume

This month’s cover poster is devoted to the importance of skilled birth attendants and improving child and maternal mortality. In the lead editorial, Cynthia Stanton (242) examines who should assist women in childbirth, what midwives should be permitted to do and where births should take place. There are also reports and papers from Bangladesh, India, Mexico and Uganda on this topic. In an interview, Joy Lawn (250–251) explains why it takes more than money to improve newborn survival rates.

Best of both worlds

Sidelined during the 20th century in Mexico and other parts of Latin America, midwives are making a comeback, reports Theresa Braine (244–245).

Why do so many women die?

Dileep Mavalankar et al. (243) suggest political and administrative reasons, rather than lack of technical knowledge, for India’s high rates of maternal mortality.

Typhoid fever

Research by R Leon Ochiai et al. (260–268) assists in determining the diverse vaccination needs for different geographical areas and age groups in Asia.

Reaching out to the poor

Brazil’s revamped public health system has brought quality health care to millions of impoverished people, reports Claudia Jurberg (248–249).

Female genital mutilation

Mohammed A Tag-Eldin et al. (269–274) study prevalence and attitudes of schoolgirls towards the practice.

Inequity in maternal health-care

Iqbal Anwar et al. (252–259) expose high levels of inequity and recommend a greater focus on overcoming financial barriers for poorer women.

Routine HIV testing in hospitals

Rhoda K Wanyenze et al. (302–309) demonstrate that routine HIV testing and counselling is well received and useful.

Action for child survival

Rosamund F Lewis et al. (292–301) attest to the effectiveness of the Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) conjugate vaccine, which now prevents 5000 child deaths each year.

Tracking HIV patients

Simon D Makombe et al. (310–314) conduct the first audit on the reliability of data compiled under the national antiretroviral treatment programme.

High disease burden in remote Aboriginal communities

Danielle B Clucas et al. (275–281) study the need for proactive prevention and treatment of infectious diseases among Aboriginal children. Jonathan Dart (245–247) reports on how the new Labor government aims to improve Aboriginal health by tackling the social problems undermining their communities.

Malnutrition in developing countries

Ellen Van de Poel et al. (282–291) use the new WHO child growth standards in a broad study of child malnutrition and socioeconomic inequality in the developing world.

Perinatal asphyxia

Jonathan M Spector & Subhash Daga (315–316) suggest that high stillbirth rates in many regions may be due to inadequate resuscitation of perinatal asphyxia cases.

Screening 40 years on

On the 40th anniversary of the publication of Wilson and Jungner’s Principles and practice of screening for disease, Anne Andermann et al. (317–319) examine the evolution of the original screening criteria as it reflects scientific and social trends.