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Global Health Briefs

July - August, 2009 | Volume 8, Issue 4

Alcohol kills one in 25 worldwide

Raising the price of liquor could be an effective way of doing something about a worldwide alcohol death rate of 1 in 25 people attributed to drinking, says one of three studies on the subject recently published in the Lancet. Author Dr. Juergen Rehm also reported that the cost of alcohol abuse is more than 1 percent of gross national product in middle- and high-income countries.

New consortia set up for African research

More than 50 institutions from 18 African countries will participate in new international consortia to strengthen research capacity on the continent under a $50 million program sponsored by the Wellcome Trust. Research in seven fields will be led by African institutions and conducted at centers in Australia, Denmark, Great Britain, Norway, Switzerland and the United States.

Ugandan circumcision trial stopped early

A trial hypothesizing that female partners of circumcised HIV-infected men would be protected had to be stopped "because of futility" when it turned out that the women were getting the virus more frequently than partners of uncircumcised HIV carriers. The trial, supported in part by Fogarty and the National Institute on Allergy and Infectious Diseases, took place in the Rakai district of Uganda. The result may have been due to the circumcised men having sex before the wound was healed.

Financing the focus of new Health Affairs

Eliminating polio everywhere will require global cooperation on several fronts, including lowering the cost for poor countries to use inactivated polio vaccine, according to an article in the July/August policy journal Health Affairs, which is devoted entirely to global health financing and delivery issues.

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