31 January – 6 February 2019

Pauline Paterson is interviewed for Al Jazeera’s The Stream about whether ‘anti-vaxxers’ are risking both their and other people’s health. Pauline said: “Vaccine concerns vary by country, by time, by vaccine and by population. It’s really key to understand the reasons why people are not vaccinating because then you can go ahead and address those reasons.”

Peter Piot speaks to the New York Times about the importance of capacity building and tackling non-communicable diseases in developing countries as part of an article discussing the great strides made in improving world health and what more can be done. Peter said: “Establishing regional organizations to respond to outbreaks is important, as the 2014 to 2015 West African Ebola epidemic taught us. The introduction of the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in 2017 marks an important step toward strengthening capacity and preparedness across the continent.”

Stefan Flasche speaks to The Telegraph about the benefits to low and middle-income countries if the UK was to take on JCVI recommendations which would see the pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV) reduced from three to two doses. Stefan said: “More and more African countries are transitioning out of support from Gavi and if they move from paying a few cents for each dose of the vaccine to $3, that’s a multi-million dollar increase for them. It’s an affordability issue – if low income countries reduce the number of doses it could help them sustain their PCV programme.”

James Logan also provides expert comment to The Telegraph, for a piece on genetically-modified mosquitos and whether the approach should be used as part of efforts to tackle malaria. The piece comes as scientists move closer to releasing gene drive mosquitoes into the wild for the first time. James said:  “Gene drive is incredibly exciting. If we can get it right, it could be game changing. The difficulty is weighing up the need and the need for speed.”

Will Nutland is quoted in The Independent on the success of the ‘Our Aids’ campaign, which has raised £3.26m and helped challenge stigmas around HIV. Will said: “As well as raising funds, the campaign has raised public knowledge about issues in HIV prevention, treatment and care. Knowing that millions more people know about PrEP has made the campaign worthwhile.”

Nick Mays and Rebecca Glover co-author a piece for BMJ opinion about public awareness campaigns for antimicrobial resistance and whether they educate patients or blame them. They write: “Ignoring the impact of health system factors on patterns of prescribing, including short consultation times, and, instead, relying on patient-blaming rhetoric, may increase mistrust or friction between GP and patient in the medium-to-long term. Patients are allies, not opponents, in limiting antimicrobial resistance, and should be seen as such.”

Martin McKee talks to Al Jazeera about how Brexit could affect paediatric care in the UK. Martin said: “The biggest problem is uncertainty. Any Brexit deal will be worse that remaining in the EU.”

Kessar Kalim, LSHTM’s director of HR features in HR Magazine for a comment piece about best practice in HR and why listening is an underused and undervalued skill. Kessar writes: “As we start the new year, improving employee engagement will be a key objective for leadership teams up and down the country. HR leaders should be at the forefront of this; thinking of new and creative ways to boost engagement with an eye on return on investment.”

 On social media

This week’s social media highlight comes from the LSHTM twitter account sharing an opinion blog by Cally Tann on the urgent need to improve our understanding of neonatal encephalopathy in Africa.

Comments are closed.