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Health of the world

One of the leading news stories in the healthcare arena now is the release of the Global Burden of Disease report by The Lancet. The report stems from a massive collaborative study bringing together 1870 independent experts in 127 countries and territories to provide the most up-to-date analysis on the state of the world’s health. Overall, the report shows that, globally, people’s health is improving, but warns that this improvement is not universal. We give an overview of the report and provide a specific focus on the Middle East region.

Also in this issue, we report on the recent WHO Eastern Mediterranean Regional Committee’s 63rd annual meeting in Cairo. Topping a full agenda at the meeting of health ministers and leading stakeholders in regional healthcare were the issues of health security and emergency response to regional health crises. As Dr Ala Alwan, WHO Regional Director, Eastern Mediterranean Region, pointed out: “Viruses know no borders. This led us, as a region, to take a major role in the past year in pushing for global harmonization of the independent assessment process and a new globally agreed-upon mechanism” to provide health security. The organisation’s efforts to provide healthcare assistance to millions of people displaced by war in Yemen, Syria and Iraq has proved challenging. Speaking at the opening session WHO’s Director-General, Dr Margaret Chan, spoke out strongly against the continued indiscriminate bombing of healthcare facilities in these countries, saying it “must stop. Nothing sets hard-won health gains backwards so dramatically as humanitarian crises on this scale”.

In the United Kingdom report we look briefly at some of the innovative products British companies will be bringing to Dubai for the annual Arab Heath exhibition in January. We also report on the recently opened Francis Crick Institute in London which is set to push the boundaries of medical research.

In a broad interview, we speak to Dr Zohair Sebai, a founding father of Saudi Arabia’s public health sector, about public health in the kingdom, then and now.

As usual we cover a wide range of medical news from the region and the world, as well as new research emanating from leading medical research institutions.

Stay informed.

Callan Emery
Editor
editor@MiddleEastHealthMag.com

(Nov-Dec 2016)

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