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Trinidad and Tobago to reduce mortality rate of chronic non-communicable diseases

December 19, 2014
Trinidad and Tobago to reduce mortality rate of chronic non-communicable diseases WASHINGTON, USA -- The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) has approved a US$110 million loan for Trinidad and Tobago to prevent and control risk factors of chronic diseases among adults, and primary and secondary school students. The program will strengthen the delivery of integrated...

Barbados Ebola rumours untrue, says health ministry

December 17, 2014
Barbados Ebola rumours untrue, says health ministry BRIDGETOWN, Barbados (BGIS) -- Any rumour of an Ebola case in Barbados is untrue, the ministry of health stated in response to persistent rumours of a suspected case of Ebola at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital. According to chief medical officer, Dr Joy St John, the ministry can confirm that...

CARPHA tackles threat of antimicrobial drug resistance in the region

December 11, 2014
CARPHA tackles threat of antimicrobial drug resistance in the region PORT-OF-SPAIN, Trinidad -- “Antimicrobial resistance threatens a return to the pre-antibiotic era when common infections and simple injuries often cause death.” This World Health Organization statement was reinforced by the executive director of the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA).

Cuban doctor returns to Havana with no traces of Ebola

December 9, 2014
Cuban doctor returns to Havana with no traces of Ebola HAVANA, Cuba (ACN) -- Dr Felix Baez, a member of Cuba's Henry Reeve International Medical Brigade, who contracted the Ebola fever virus during his mission in Sierra Leone, West Africa, has returned to Havana after a complete recovery from the illness. Baez arrived at the capital's José Marti International Airport.

A Caribbean country will be first to eliminate mother to child HIV transmission

December 2, 2014
A Caribbean country will be first to eliminate mother to child HIV transmission PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad -- Thirteen Caribbean countries are on track to be certified as having eliminated HIV transmission from mothers to children, while three are close to reaching this goal. Over the last decade, countries have successfully increased access to antiretroviral medicines during pregnancy.

UN health agency advises male Ebola survivors to abstain from sex for three months

December 1, 2014
UN health agency advises male Ebola survivors to abstain from sex for three months GENEVA, Switzerland -- The United Nations World Health Organization (WHO) on Friday warned that it is possible for the Ebola virus to be present in semen for three months after recovery. The WHO said in a briefing note that “semen may be infectious with the Ebola virus for as long as three months."

US hospitals sue Cayman Islands insurance company for $1.4 million in unpaid medical bills

November 27, 2014
US hospitals sue Cayman Islands insurance company for $1.4 million in unpaid medical bills MIAMI, USA -- Two Miami, Florida, area hospitals have filed complaints in US federal court claiming over $1.4 million in unpaid medical bills from the Cayman Islands National Insurance Company (CINICO), which is a government-owned company formed to provide health insurance coverage to...

Cuba exports drugs and health technology to over 50 countries

November 27, 2014
Cuba exports drugs and health technology to over 50 countries HAVANA, Cuba (ACN) -- More than 50 nations buy Cuban medicines and technologies, one of the country’s main export items, said Victor Faife Perez, head of the department of pharmaceutical services in the ministry of public health. The products include 30 drugs made only in Cuba.

Letter: Proper health care in SVG and the Cuban model

November 27, 2014
Letter: Proper health care in SVG and the Cuban model No such thing I hear you all say. Every so often the question arises regarding our health care in St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG). Why do we have to suffer a hospital system that is as bad or even worse than in any fourth-world country. Often, in fact, more often than not, no drugs, medication...

EarthTalk: Assessing the risks of genetically engineered crops

November 26, 2014
EarthTalk: Assessing the risks of genetically engineered crops Proponents of genetic engineering (GE) -- whereby DNA from unrelated species is combined to produce improved or novel organisms -- insist that the benefits of increased crop yields and less agricultural waste outweigh the potential risks, but many environmental and public health advocates aren’t convinced.

More than 8,000 cases of chikungunya reported in Curacao

November 24, 2014
More than 8,000 cases of chikungunya reported in Curacao The chikungunya epidemic in Curacao is still not at its peak, according to the Public Health Department (GGD). The first patient in Curacao was reported in August. Now, in late November, there are more than 8,000 cases of chikungunya on the island. And if that is not enough, there are about 1,000 more...

Cuban doctor infected with Ebola virus in stable condition

November 24, 2014
Cuban doctor infected with Ebola virus in stable condition GENEVA, Switzerland (ACN) -- Cuban doctor Felix Baez Sarrias, who contracted the Ebola virus during his work as part of the Henry Reeve International Medical Brigade in Sierra Leone, is in stable condition, though he feels very tired, said the head of the intensive care unit at Geneva’s Cantonal Hospital.

Commentary: Inadequate response to Ebola should not be repeated with chickungunya

November 21, 2014
Commentary: Inadequate response to Ebola should not be repeated with chickungunya The good news is that a prophylactic vaccine against chikungunya, developed by the Austrian biotech company Themis Bioscience GmbH, is reported to induce a significant neutralizing immune response to the disease and is confirmed as safe. The not so good news is two-fold.

Cuban doctor in Sierra Leone diagnosed with Ebola

November 20, 2014
Cuban doctor in Sierra Leone diagnosed with Ebola HAVANA, Cuba (ACN) -- Cuban doctor Felix Baez Sarria, a member of the Henry Reeves medical brigade in Sierra Leone, has been diagnosed with Ebola and is now under treatment at a specialized treatment centre in Switzerland, with no complications, the Cuban health ministry reported on Wednesday.

St Kitts-Nevis opposition calls for ministers' resignation over high school health issue

November 19, 2014
St Kitts-Nevis opposition calls for ministers' resignation over high school health issue BASSETERRE, St Kitts (WINN) -- The education, health and labour ministries in St Kitts and Nevis have come in for harsh criticism over an International Labour Organization (ILO) report on the Basseterre High School (BHS). The ILO report labeled the environmental health problems at BHS a public health issue.

Haiti cannot wait 40 years to eliminate cholera, warns UN envoy

November 15, 2014
Haiti cannot wait 40 years to eliminate cholera, warns UN envoy PORT AU PRINCE, Haiti -- The top United Nations coordinator for cholera response in Haiti says support for initiatives to combat the disease has been “disappointing,” noting that, while it may be possible to eliminate cholera in about a decade, at the current rate of funding, it would take more than 40 years.

Letter: Chikungunya preparedness: What happened?

November 15, 2014
Letter: Chikungunya preparedness: What happened? A Caribbean subregional workshop introducing the new guidelines for preparedness and response for chikungunya virus was held in Kingston, Jamaica, at the Jamaica Pegasus Hotel from May 28-30, 2012. The big question is what happened after that? There is a lovely picture with smiling faces...

St Vincent carnival preparations will not be affected by Ebola

November 13, 2014
St Vincent carnival preparations will not be affected by Ebola KINGSTOWN, St Vincent -- Vincentians have been assured that the threat of Ebola is not likely to affect plans for the 2015 carnival celebrations. This assurance came from Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves, as he responded to a question at a news conference on Monday. Gonsalves was among...

Jamaica to put in place regulations for medicinal marijuana industry

November 13, 2014
Jamaica to put in place regulations for medicinal marijuana industry KINGSTON, Jamaica (JIS) -- Minister of science, technology, energy and mining, Phillip Paulwell, says the Jamaican government is moving to ensure that the regulatory framework is in place for the medicinal marijuana industry. “We no longer need to be looking for perfection, let us start something and...

Chikungunya outbreak progresses in Caribbean, travelers to area remain at risk

November 8, 2014
Chikungunya outbreak progresses in Caribbean, travelers to area remain at risk ATLANTA, USA -- Fall in the United States means residents in most of the country will see fewer mosquitoes and less risk of the diseases they spread. However, the chikungunya outbreak in Caribbean and Central and South American countries continues to spread, with no sign of slowing down.

Experimental Ebola vaccine trials could begin by January

November 8, 2014
Experimental Ebola vaccine trials could begin by January NEW YORK, USA -- The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) said on Thursday that the Ebola crisis response “needs to scale up, get better and perform faster,” as the UN health agency reported that, if judged safe, larger scale trials of an experimental vaccine could be taken to...

Barbados prepares isolation centre for Ebola patients only

November 7, 2014
Barbados prepares isolation centre for Ebola patients only BRIDGETOWN, Barbados (BGIS) -- The ministry of health in Barbados has announced that the isolation centre located on the Queen Elizabeth Hospital’s compound will be used by Ebola patients only. Permanent secretary in the ministry, Tennyson Springer, said on Tuesday that a decision...

Cuba launches portfolio of medical products and services

November 7, 2014
Cuba launches portfolio of medical products and services HAVANA, Cuba -- The marketing agency of Cuban Medical Services launched its portfolio of products at the 32nd International Trade Fair, currently underway in Havana. The portfolio aligns with clients' demands and mirrors the strengths and specialties of the Cuban health system, with competitive programs...

CARICOM heads agree ten-point plan to fight Ebola

November 6, 2014
CARICOM heads agree ten-point plan to fight Ebola PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad -- Heads of government of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) met in special session in Port of Spain, Trinidad, on Tuesday to discuss two current public health challenges facing the Community: Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) and the chikungunya outbreak.

Chikungunya cases increase to 30 in the Cayman Islands

November 6, 2014
Chikungunya cases increase to 30 in the Cayman Islands GEORGE TOWN, Cayman Islands (GIS) -- The total number of confirmed chikungunya cases in the Cayman Islands has reached 30 to date. Meanwhile, the number of locally transmitted cases is now six. Twenty-four have reported travel history to countries experiencing outbreaks.

CARICOM meeting on Ebola and chikungunya to take place in Trinidad on Tuesday

November 3, 2014
CARICOM meeting on Ebola and chikungunya to take place in Trinidad on Tuesday PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad -- Trinidad and Tobago’s Prime Minister Kamla Persad Bissessar has announced she will host the 17th special meeting of the Conference of Heads of Government of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) to discuss the Ebola and chikungunya diseases.

Cuba to host international course against Ebola

November 3, 2014
Cuba to host international course against Ebola HAVANA, Cuba (ACN) -- The Havana-based Pedro Kouri Tropical Medicine Institute will be the venue for the first international course for the prevention and fighting against Ebola in the Americas, Cuban deputy health minister Marcia Cobas has announced. The initiative came out of a meeting of experts...

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