News

GACVS COVID-19 Vaccine Safety subcommittee meeting to review reports of deaths of very frail elderly individuals vaccinated with Pfizer BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine, BNT162b2

The GACVS COVID-19 Vaccine Safety subcommittee met virtually on Tuesday, 19 January 2021, to review available information and data on deaths reported in frail, elderly individuals who had received the Pfizer BioNTech COVID-19 mRNA vaccine, BNT162b2 (hereafter, BNT162b2). Experts invited from the European Medicines Agency (EMA) and the Uppsala Monitoring Center (UMC) provided an overview of deaths reported in Europe and in the WHO global database (VigiBase) following vaccination with BNT162b2.  Based on a careful scientific review of the...

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WHO Information Notice for IVD Users 2021/01

Product type: All in vitro diagnostic medical devices (IVDs) for detection of SARS-CoV-2 Date: 18 January 2021                                                                    WHO-identifier: 2021/01, version 1   Target audience: Laboratory professionals and users of IVDs.  Purpose of this notice: To request that IVD users monitor mutations of SARS-CoV-2 and their impact on diagnosis. Description of the problem: Following the detection of SARS-CoV-2 variants containing mutations, including SARS-CoV-2 VOC 202012/01, and SARS-CoV-2 501Y.V2, WHO reminds users of IVDs to monitor detection rates for SARS-CoV-2 at their site.  IVD users should routinely review test results to detect unexpected increases or decreases in test results, including positivity rate, target detection rate, invalid or unreturnable result rate, etc. These variations may be early indicators of impact on the safety, quality or performance...

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Statement to the 148th Executive Board by the Chair of the Review Committee on the Functioning of the International Health Regulations (2005) during the COVID-19 Response

Honorable Chair, Excellencies, Director-General, Ladies and Gentlemen Thank you once again for the opportunity to provide you with an update on the work of the Review Committee on the Functioning of the International Health Regulations (2005) during COVID-19. As you know, this Committee was convened by the Director-General on 8 September 2020, in line with World Health Assembly Resolution WHA73.1. The Committee is composed of experts with a wide range of expertise and with adequate gender and geographical representation....

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COVAX Announces new agreement, plans for first deliveries

COVAX announced the signing of an advance purchase agreement for up to 40 million doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine; rollout to commence with successful execution of supply agreements.Additionally, COVAX announced that, pending WHO emergency use listings, nearly 150 million doses of the AstraZeneca/Oxford candidate are anticipated to be available in Q1 2021, via existing agreements with the Serum Institute of India (SII) and AstraZeneca.COVAX is therefore on track to deliver at least 2 billion doses by the end of...

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WHO Guidelines for establishing a poison centre

<p>Poisoning is a significant global public health problem. WHO estimates that, in 2016, unintentional poisoning caused 106 683 deaths and the loss of 6.3 million years of healthy life (disability-adjusted life years). In many countries, poisoning is one of the main causes of emergency attendance at hospitals. Poisoning is a time-dependent emergency and, like infectious diseases, may require a specialist for appropriate diagnosis and treatment. </p><p><span style="background-color:transparent;text-align:inherit;text-transform:inherit;white-space:inherit;word-spacing:normal;caret-color:auto;">Poison centres are established in many countries as sources of specialized expertise to...

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WHO issues its first emergency use validation for a COVID-19 vaccine and emphasizes need for equitable global access

<p>The World Health Organization (WHO) today listed the Comirnaty COVID-19 mRNA vaccine for emergency use, making the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine the first to receive emergency validation from WHO since the outbreak began a year ago.</p><p>The WHO&rsquo;s Emergency Use Listing (EUL) opens the door for countries to expedite their own regulatory approval processes to import and administer the vaccine. It also enables UNICEF and the Pan-American Health Organization to procure the vaccine for distribution to countries in need.</p><p>&ldquo;This is a very...

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COVID-19: One year later – WHO Director-General’s new year message

<hr /><p><iframe width="860" height="450" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/Beoo9NvI_zc" frameborder="0" allow="accelerometer; autoplay; clipboard-write; encrypted-media; gyroscope; picture-in-picture"></iframe><br /><em>Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General</em></p><hr /><p>&nbsp;</p><p>As people around the world celebrated New Year's Eve 12 months ago, a new global threat emerged. <br /></p><p>Since that moment, the COVID-19 pandemic has taken so many lives and caused massive disruption to families, societies and economies all over the world. <br /></p><p>But it also triggered the fastest and most wide-reaching response to a global health emergency in human history....

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Mobilizing youth to End TB

Since the global youth movement, 1+1 youth Initiative was launched on World TB Day 2019, followed by the  adoption of the Youth Declaration to End TB at the first-ever Global Youth Townhall on ending TB, there has been significant progress over the past year. The 1+1 Initiative has expanded to include thousands of youth across the world in countries like Bangladesh, Nepal, India, Indonesia, Philippines,  and Vietnam.The social media platforms set up as part of the 1+1 youth initiative are joined...

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Behavioural considerations for acceptance and uptake of COVID-19 vaccines

 The Behavioural Insights Unit of the WHO released a meeting report of the Technical Advisory Group (TAG) on the special session on acceptance and uptake of COVID-19 vaccines, held on 15 October 2020. The meeting report outlines the factors that drive people’s behaviour in relation to vaccine acceptance and uptake: an enabling environment, social influences and motivation. The image above is a visual narration that captures highlights of the meeting on 15 October 2020, during which the TAG on Behavioural...

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Meet the 100+ outstanding Nurses and Midwives

To mark the end of the Year of the Nurse and Midwife, we are honored to unveil the 2020 List of 100+ Outstanding Women Nurses and Midwives. This partnership of the World Health Organization (WHO), United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), Nursing Now, International Council of Nurses (ICN), International Confederation of Midwives (ICM), and Women in Global Health (WGH),  features the achievements and contributions of nurses and midwives from 43 countries and across 6 global regions, to recognize these women...

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