Weekly digest: CDDEP director writes on immunization in India, drugs for malaria prevention, and MRSA on money

30 Sep 2012
Alison Buki

A roundup of news on drug resistance and other topics in global health.

An editorial in the Financial Express authored by CDDEP director Ramanan Laxminarayan examines the success of the Indian state of Bihar in increasing immunization coverage from 11% to 67% in 13 years, and questions why other states could not follow suit. [Financial Express]

A press release from the President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI) issues comments on the independent evaluation of the Affordable Medicines Facility-malaria (AMFm) and highlights PMI’s future strategies for global malaria treatment. For more background on the current state of AMFm, please read this issue brief.  [PMI]

Research on antibiotic prescription among older adults, published in the journal Archives of Internal Medicine, finds the highest regional use of antibiotics among older Americans in the South, and concludes that regions with high antibiotic use might “benefit from targeted programs to reduce unnecessary prescription.” [NYTimes]

In an interview with the World Economic Forum, Otto Cars, Professor of Infectious Diseases at Uppsala University, discusses the challenges posed by increasing antibiotic resistance, problems with developing new drugs, and the ways to curb drug resistance and develop new treatments. [Forum:Blog]

The New Yorker covers issues surrounding the rise of drug-resistant gonorrhea. [The New Yorker]

October’s issue of the journal Health Policy and Planning is entirely dedicated to presenting original research and commentaries on the added value of systems thinking in strengthening health systems and showing “the range of relevant approaches and strategies that need to be explored or adapted.” [Health Policy and Planning]

Due to mounting evidence linking multi-patient rooms to increased risk of hospital-acquired infections, expansion projects at several Maine hospitals are converting multi-patient rooms with communal bathrooms to single-patient rooms with individual bathrooms. [Maine Sunday Telegram]

According to a news release by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the agency has formed an internal task force, comprising of 19 scientists and clinicians from multiple disciplines, that will “support the development of new antibacterial drugs.” [FDA]

Findings from research published in The Journal of Clinical Investigation suggest that a new class of antimicrobial drugs could be synthesized from cytokeratins found in the human cornea. [Smart Planet]

Preliminary findings from a study on the presence of harmful bacteria on paper money and credit cards indicate a high prevalence of methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in paper money, with 80% of the cash tested outside hospitals having MRSA compared to 20% of the cash tested in hospitals containing MRSA. [Examiner]

A Doctors Without Borders study finds that wide distribution of anti-malaria drugs to healthy children significantly reduced the number of new malaria cases, with up to an 86% decline in the region of Chad where the study was conducted. [Voice of America]

An article on the New York Times blog India Ink summarizes a Tehelka magazine cover story on malaria in Chattisgarh, India. The story reveals that while malaria causes thousands of annual deaths in Chattisgarh, official data largely underreports the actual death toll. [NYTimes]

 

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