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Once an outbreak becomes an epidemic, the costs - both human and financial - on health systems are extensive and debilitating. 

The list of 10 Core tests in each country includes six testing methods selected according to the International Health Regulations' immediately notifiable list and the WHO Top Ten Causes of Death in low-income countries. 

The Global Health Security Agenda (GHSA) was launched in February 2014 to help build countries’ capacity to help create a world safe and secure from infectious disease threats and elevate global health security as a national and global priority. Find out more about the GHSA Action Packages, visit: https://www.ghsagenda.org/ 

The Global Health Security Agenda (GHSA) was launched in February 2014 to help build countries’ capacity to help create a world safe and secure from infectious disease threats and elevate global health security as a national and global priority. Find out more about the GHSA, visit: https://www.ghsagenda.org/ 

Over half a billion people have died in epidemics over the last century and most experts agree another epidemic is not a matter of if, but a matter of when. Are you ready? This one page summary of Ready Together was presented at the 2017 Conference on Epidemic Preparedness held at Harvard Medical School.  

Between May and July of 2015, South Korea experienced an outbreak of Middle East respiratory syndrome, or MERS, that lead to 38 deaths and seriously affected the country's economy. 

The No More Epidemics campaign held its final event on November 13, 2017—the Ready Together Conference on Epidemic Preparedness, hosted in partnership with Harvard Medical School, Georgetown University’s Center for Global Health Science and Security, Harvard Global Health Institute, and the James M. and Cathleen D. Stone Foundation.

 Although international guidelines for tuberculosis (TB) control are standardized, country TB programs are often unable to properly manage the data needed for following the guidelines, resulting in poorly timed interventions. The emergence of drug-resistant (DR-TB) has made it more difficult to manage cases and medicines, increasing the need for tools that effectively monitor diagnosing

This 4-page brochure on health systems strengthening describes how MSH partners with countries to build strong, resilient, sustainable health systems that can deliver universal health coverage—equitable, affordable access to high-quality health services for all who need them.

In his new book, 'The End of Epidemics: The Looming Threat to Humanity and How to Stop It,' Dr. Johnathan D. Quick, a Harvard Medical School faculty member and Chair of the Global Health Council, examines the eradication of smallpox and devastating effects of influenza, AIDS, SARS, and Ebola.

Since the 1990s, the Inter-agency field manual on reproductive health in humanitarian settings (IAFM) has provided authoritative guidance on reproductive health service provision during different phases of complex humanitarian emergencies. In 2018, the Inter-Agency Working Group on Reproductive Health in Crises will release a new edition of this global resource. In this article, we describe the collaborative and inter-sectoral revision process and highlight major changes in the 2018 IAFM. We conclude with an outline of plans for releasing the 2018 IAFM and facilitating uptake by those working in refugee, crisis, conflict, and emergency settings.

In 2011 the Help Ethiopia Address the Low TB Performance (HEAL TB) Project used WHO or national TB indicators as standards of care (SOC) for baseline assessment, progress monitoring, gap identification, assessment of health workers’ capacity-building needs, and data quality assurance. In this analysis we present results from 10 zones (of 28) in which 1,165 health facilities were supported from 2011 through 2015. The improvement in the median composite score of 13 selected major indicators (out of 22) over four years was significant. The proportion of health facilities with 100% data accuracy for all forms of TB was 55.1% at baseline and reached 96.5%. In terms of program performance, the TB cure rate improved from 71% to 91.1%, while the treatment success rate increased from 88% to 95.3%. In the laboratory area, where there was previously no external quality assurance (EQA) for sputum microscopy, 1,165 health facilities now have quarterly EQA, and 96.1% of the facilities achieved a ≥ 95% concordance rate in blinded rechecking. The SOC approach for supervision was effective for measuring progress, enhancing quality of services, identifying capacity needs, and serving as a mentorship and an operational research tool.

Between December 2014 and September 2016, we conducted a prospective cohort study in eight health facilities in Ethiopia. Eligibility criteria included age 3 months-14 years; being on ART for not more than a month. Of 309 children, 304 were included, 52% were male. During 287.7 person-years of observation (PYO), 24 attritions were recorded, yielding an attrition rate of 8.3 per 100 PYO. Younger children, those from rural areas, and children with anaemia were at higher risk of attrition, especially during the early months of treatment, and therefore should be prioritized during treatment follow-up.

This was a retrospective study of TB data for Kampala City for the period 2011–2015. We extracted data from the TB registers in the 52 diagnostic and treatment units in Kampala. We report on data for children 0 to 14 years. We accessed 33,221 TB patient records, of which 2,333 (7%) were children. The proportion of children with pulmonary TB was 80%. The TB notification rate among children in Kampala City showed a large decline (from 105 to 74 per 100,000) during the period. There was a slight improvement in the treatment success rate among the children.

Clinical monitoring of pediatric HIV treatment remains a major challenge in settings where drug resistance genotyping is not routinely available. As a result, our understanding of drug resistance, and its impact on subsequent therapeutic regimens available in these settings, remains limited. We investigate the prevalence and correlates of HIV-1 drug resistance among 94 participants of the Ethiopia Pediatric HIV Cohort failing first-line combination antiretroviral therapy (cART) using dried blood spot-based genotyping. Overall, 81% (73/90) of successfully genotyped participants harbored resistance mutations. Strikingly, 42% of resistant participants harbored resistance to all four nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors recommended for second-line use in this setting, meaning that there are effectively no remaining cART options for these children. Longer cART duration and prior regimen changes were significantly associated with detection of drug resistance mutations. Replicate genotyping increased the breadth of drug resistance detected in 34% of cases, and thus is recommended for consideration when typing from blood spots. Implementation of timely drug resistance testing and access to newer antiretrovirals and drug classes are urgently needed to guide clinical decision-making and improve outcomes for HIV-infected children on first-line cART in Ethiopia.

Task-shifting mental health into general medical care requires more than brief provider training. Generalists need long-term support to master new skills and changes to work context are required to sustain change in the face of competing priorities. We examined program and context factors promoting and obstructing sustainability of a mental health task-shifting training for hospital-based HIV providers in Ethiopia.

Afghanistan has made remarkable improvements in health indicators since 2005. However, a wide range of barriers prevent rural communities in Afghanistan from accessing tuberculosis (TB) and other health services.

In 2017, with funding by UK Aid from the British people, Management Sciences for Health (MSH) launched the Lea Mimba project to address gaps in the quality of antenatal care (ANC) and to support women's and adolescents' use of maternal and newborn health services in Kakamega County, Kenya.

In 2008, the USAID Mission invited the Strengthening Pharmaceutical Systems (SPS) Program to provide technical assistance and support to the Government of Afghanistan’s Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) to improve the pharmaceutical system.

Outbreaks can overwhelm weak or fragile health systems that lack the tools, infrastructure, policies, and systems to keep communities healthy and safe. Timely detection, preparedness, and appropriate response are essential for limiting both the loss of human life and crippling political and socio-economic impact of disease outbreaks.

A civil society organisation (CSO) perspective on how UHC can be reached by 2030 Universal Health Coverage 2030 (UHC2030) MSH is the secretariat for the Civil Society Engagement Mechanism of UHC2030, a global movement to build stronger health systems for universal health coverage.

This study compared the yield of TB among contacts of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) index cases with that of drug-sensitive TB (DS-TB) index cases in a program setting. The yield of TB among contacts of MDR-TB and DS-TB using GeneXpert was high as compared to population-level prevalence. The likelihood of diagnosing RR (Rifampicin Resistant)-TB among contacts of MDR-TB index cases is higher in comparison with contacts of DS-TB index cases. The use of GeneXpert in DS TB contact investigation has an added advantage of diagnosing RR cases in contrast to using the nationally recommended AFB microscopy for DS TB contact investigation.

Despite the commitment of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) to expand the family planning method mix and increase access to services, awareness of emergency contraception is low among women, and the method remains underused and poorly integrated in family planning programming. Data from 15 focus group discussions conducted in 2016 among women aged 15–35 were used to examine awareness and perceptions of, and attitudes toward, emergency contraceptives. Emergency contraceptive pills have the potential to address gaps in the family planning method mix in the DRC. Assessing whether women have incomplete or erroneous information about family planning methods can provide better understanding of women's contraceptive choices in low-income countries.

Road traffic injuries (RTIs) are commonly under-reported in low- and-medium-income countries. This study aimed to estimate the number of RTIs and determine the magnitude of under-reporting by traffic police and hospital registries. The police registry captured 14.4% of the estimated number of RTIs and the hospitals captured 60.4%. The estimated number of RTIs was higher than reported by either the police or the hospitals alone. Neither the police nor the hospitals provided accurate data on RTIs, calling for the strengthening of both sources of data.

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