Bulletin of the World Health Organization

Recent news from WHO

  • WHO called for more research into childhood diarrhoea, on 10 March. Despite the persistently high burden of disease, research into childhood diarrhoea has been steadily decreasing since the 1980s. Nearly two million children die from diarrhoea every year. If childhood diarrhoea is not addressed urgently, the countries that are worst affected will fail to achieve the fourth Millennium Development Goal target of reducing child deaths by two-thirds by 2015.
  • The emergence of parasites resistant to artemisinin at the border between Cambodia and Thailand could undermine global malaria control efforts. WHO said, on 25 February, that a recent shift from treating patients with failing drugs to the highly effective artemisinin-based combination therapies (ACTs) had provided a breakthrough. Appropriate treatment with ACTs succeeds in more than 90% of cases, but parasitical resistance to these drugs along the Thai–Cambodia border threatens these gains. WHO said that it would assist efforts to contain the spread of artemisinin-resistant malaria parasites with a US$ 22.5 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

For more about these and other WHO news items please see: http://www.who.int/mediacentre