Views from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine

All posts in Health

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How did England’s national immunisation programme adapt to large scale NHS reforms?

Sandra Mounier-Jack, Senior Lecturer in Health Policy, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine  In April 2013, the National Health Service (NHS) in Englmounier-jack_sandra01_weband was subject to the biggest reorganisation since its creation in 1948.  NHS leaders famously described the changes as “so big you could see them from space”. In a very short space of time, new organisations were created, old ones abolished and responsibilities for public health were transferred from the NHS to local authorities. In the midst of these changes, we investigated what happened to the national immunisation programme. Read more

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Evidence gaps in drug resistant infection need plugging to eliminate superbugs

Clare Chandler, Co-Director of the Antimicrobial Resistance Centre and Susannah Woodd, Research Fellow Epidemiology, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine Global leaders at the United Nations General Assembly have signed a declaration that their 193 countries will take steps to rid the world of antimicrobial resistance (AMR). It is only the fourth time in the history of the UN that a health topic has been on the General Assembly agenda. Read more

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Got your underwear, bed sheets and vaccination? Why freshers could help eliminate measles

John Edmunds, Professor of Infectious Disease Modelling and Dean of Faculty of Epidemiology & Population   john_edmundsIt’s the time of year when hundreds of thousands of teenagers are beginning an exciting new chapter in their lives. Freshers’ week will see friendships fostered for life, but for some unfortunate students it will also mean experiencing something not quite as welcome. Close contact between large groups of young adults is the perfect breeding ground for infectious disease. Perhaps surprisingly, measles is one of them. Read more

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Why can’t we save the world’s babies from sepsis? It’s down to a lack of data

Elizabeth Fitchett, Visiting Research Fellow, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, Paediatrics Academic Clinical Fellow, Institute of Child Health, UCL Faslibby_webt-acting, potentially fatal, and ruthlessly unpredictable - every health professional fears sepsis in their patients. Today, 13 September, is World Sepsis Day—a wake-up call to governments and society that the number of deaths from sepsis remains unacceptably high, and continues to increase at an alarming rate. Read more

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We must not forget children who survive severe malnutrition

Natasha Lelijveld, Research Fellow in the Nutrition Group at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine Severe Acute Malnutrition (SAM) affects more than 19 million children under five each year worldwide and causes over 1 million deaths according to some estimates. The vast majority of these are from low-income countries, common catalysts being poverty, conflict and disease. The current drought in Ethiopia and South Sudan conflict are stark reminders that SAM remains a major global health problem. Read more

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Breaking negative attitudes to women is key to tackling HIV – here’s how to do it

Tanya Abramsky, Research Fellow in Epidemiology “Women are supposed to be under men’s superiority in everything … you cannot respond when he says anything. You only have to do what he says”. That’s what one young woman told staff at Raising Voices, a Ugandan violence prevention charity, that she used to think before she became a community activist. Sadly, throughout many parts of the world, such views are still common.  Read more

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In the news to in the clinic: do high profile health stories affect healthcare decisions?

Anthony Matthews_chariotBy Anthony Matthews, Research Assistant in Statistical Epidemiology From climate change and GM foods, to saturated fats and vitamin supplements, academic debates played out through the media are nothing new. The UK is fortunate to have so many excellent health and science reporters, and we know their stories can communicate important health messages and have the power to influence the public. However, what is less clear is how much of an impact high profile health stories can have on public health. Read more

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How can the private health sector contribute to Universal Health Coverage?

Kara Hanson, Professor of Health System Economics The private sector in low- and middle-income countries is extremely diverse. It includes large scale corporate hospitals, independent sole practitioners and retail sellers of drugs.  Private providers often contribute a substantial share of health services.  For example, in Nigeria where there is a large retail pharmaceutical sector, more than 90% of antimalarial drugs are sold through private drug shops.  They provide a significant share of care for priority health conditions such as diarrhoea and fever in children. Read more

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Gay sex survey: why preventing HIV means calling an end to finger pointing

Ford Hickson, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine

Blame has always been the key note of the HIV epidemic among gay men. In the 1980s the self-righteous blamed gay people, the promiscuous and sex workers. They in turn blamed the government and the churches. The old blamed the…

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Can shifting social norms tackle the sexual exploitation of girls in Rio’s favelas?

Ligia Kiss Ben CislaghiBy Dr Ligia Kiss, Lecturer in Social Epidemiology and Dr Ben Cislaghi, Lecturer in social norms at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine. In a favela in Rio de Janeiro recently, a 16-year-old girl woke up in a house she did not know, surrounded by more than thirty men, some armed, who claimed to have had sex with her. She did not remember what had happened after going to her boyfriend’s house the night before. After waking up from a drug-induced state of unconsciousness, she went home wearing men’s clothes and didn’t mention anything to her family. Read more