Connect with us

Health

Pollution likely to cut 9 years of life expectancy of 40% of Indians

Published

 on

(Last Updated On: September 1, 2021)

Air pollution is likely to reduce the life expectancy of about 40% of Indians by more than nine years, according to a report released by a U.S. research group on Wednesday.

More than 480 million people living in the vast swathes of central, eastern and northern India, including the capital, New Delhi, endure significantly high pollution levels, said the report prepared by the Energy Policy Institute at the University of Chicago (EPIC).

“Alarmingly, India’s high levels of air pollution have expanded geographically over time,” the EPIC report said.

For example, air quality has significantly worsened in the western state of Maharashtra and the central state of Madhya Pradesh, it said.

Lauding India’s National Clean Air Program (NCAP), launched in 2019 to rein in dangerous pollution levels, the EPIC report said “achieving and sustaining” the NCAP goals would raise the country’s overall life expectancy by 1.7 years and that of New Delhi 3.1 years, Reuters reported.

The NCAP aims to reduce pollution in the 102 worst-affected cities by 20%-30% by 2024 by ensuring cuts in industrial emissions and vehicular exhaust, introducing stringent rules for transport fuels and biomass burning and reduce dust pollution. It will also entail better monitoring systems.

New Delhi was the world’s most polluted capital for the third straight year in 2020, according to IQAir, a Swiss group that measures air quality levels based on the concentration of lung-damaging airborne particles known as PM2.5.

Last year, New Delhi’s 20 million residents, who breathed some of the cleanest air on record in the summer because of coronavirus lockdown curbs, battled toxic air in winter following a sharp increase in farm residue burning in the nearby states of Punjab and Haryana, Reuters reported.

According to the EPIC’s findings, neighbouring Bangladesh could raise average life expectancy by 5.4 years if the country improves air quality to levels recommended by the World Health Organization.

To arrive at the life expectancy number, EPIC compared the health of people exposed to different levels of long-term air pollution and applied the results to various places in India and elsewhere.

Health

WHO calls for $378 million to prevent collapse of health centers

Published

on

(Last Updated On: November 30, 2021)

World Health Organization (WHO) officials on Tuesday said they have requested $378 million in aid in order to prevent Afghanistan’s health services from collapsing.

Dr Jamshed Tanoli, WHO’s health sector coordinater, said during a visit to Kandahar province on Monday, along with UN officials, that efforts are underway to keep 2,331 health centers open in Afghanistan.

“We are advocating to convince World Bank, USAID, and the European Union to sustain the funding to ensure that after June 22 we should have a medium to long term strategy to ensure the continuity of health services… also to focus on the COVID-19 as a whole you know the surveillance and laboratories expansion including the treatment centers,,” said Tanoli.

This comes after WHO warned earlier that Afghanistan’s health system is close to collapsing.
“We came here to let you know that we are here to serve the people of Afghanistan,” he said adding that the head of the cluster has requested almost 378 million (dollars).

“So that we are advocating Inshallah to get those funds to ensure the continuity of the services through the NGOs and of course through UN agencies and through all the partners,” said Tanoli.

United Nations Development Program in Afghanistan (UNDP) meanwhile said that the UN will play a greater role in the development of Afghanistan.

“So we are not here to provide the people a package of food, there are other agencies that do that. We are here to see how the people can have enough income to buy their own food,” said Abdullah Al Dardari, head of UNDP in Afghanistan.

The Kandahar governor, on the other hand, said that the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) is taking serious measures to provide security for international aid organizations.

“Necessary aid should be delivered for Afghan people. People face a lot of problems. Most people in Dand, Arghistan, Arghandab, Panjwayi and Zhari have been displaced. They lost their houses during US bombardments, now they don’t have any shelter,” said Haji Mohammad Yousuf Wafa, Kandahar’s governor.

This comes as many UN aid agencies warn of an imminent humanitarian catastrophe in Afghanistan.

Continue Reading

Health

WHO, UNICEF launch Afghan polio vaccine campaign with IEA backing

Published

on

(Last Updated On: November 9, 2021)

The World Health Organization (WHO) and the United Nations children’s agency launched a polio vaccination campaign in Afghanistan on Monday, the first nationwide campaign to fight the disease in three years.

Naikwali Shah Momim, the National Emergency Operations Coordinator for the polio program at Afghanistan’s health ministry, told Reuters the campaign had started in various parts of the country on Monday, but added there were several hurdles around a shortage of trained staff.

“We have not received the polio medicines on time, and most of the families refuse to vaccinate their kids because there are some rumors that this polio vaccine may harm their children. These are the issues we are facing,” said Hassibullah Qaderi, who is working with the polio vaccine campaign.

The campaign, which aims to reach over 3 million children, had received Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) backing, which would allow teams to reach children in previously inaccessible parts of the country, the WHO said.

Afghanistan and neighboring Pakistan are the last countries in the world with endemic polio, an incurable and highly infectious disease transmitted through sewage that can cause crippling paralysis in young children.

Polio has been virtually eliminated globally through a decades-long inoculation drive. But insecurity, inaccessible terrain, mass displacement and suspicion of outside interference have hampered mass vaccination in Afghanistan and some areas of Pakistan.

Several polio workers have been killed by gunmen in eastern Afghanistan this year, though it was not clear who was behind the attacks.

According to WHO figures compiled before the collapse of the Western-backed government in August, there was one reported case of the one wild poliovirus type 1 in Afghanistan in 2021, compared with 56 in 2020.

Until the disease is eliminated completely, it remains a threat to human health in all countries, especially those with vulnerable health systems because of the risk of importing the disease, according to health experts.

Continue Reading

Health

New shipment of WHO life-saving medical supplies lands in Kabul

Published

on

(Last Updated On: November 8, 2021)

An aircraft carrying around 7 metric tonnes of life-saving medicines and supplies from the World Health Organization landed in Kabul last week, the organization confirmed Monday.

According to a statement issued by the organization, the shipment was delivered in collaboration with the operations and logistic teams of Qatar Airways and the government of Qatar.

This is the fourth flight carrying WHO supplies to arrive in Afghanistan from Doha since 30 August 2021.

The supplies include medicines for the treatment of 5,000 children suffering from severe acute malnutrition, diarrhoea, pneumonia, upper respiratory infections, and other conditions.

“Health needs in Afghanistan are greater than ever before, and we are moving quickly to address shortages in medical supplies to keep life-saving health services running. Children are the tragic victims of the country’s failing health system,” said Dr Ahmed Al-Mandhari, WHO Regional Director for the Eastern Mediterranean.

He also expressed the organization’s gratitude to Qatar for their help in delivering the supplies.

“This show of ongoing solidarity is a concrete demonstration of our regional vision in action: health for all people, with the support all people,” said Al-Mandhari.

Since 30 August, 4 flights from Qatar to Afghanistan have delivered a total of 60 metric tonnes of WHO supplies, which are enough to cover the urgent health needs of almost 1.5 million people.

Continue Reading

Trending

Copyright © 2021 Ariana News. All rights reserved!