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SCIENCE
February 27, 2008 | Thomas H. Maugh II, Times Staff Writer
A dangerous form of drug-resistant tuberculosis has reached its highest levels ever, accounting for at least 5% of all new TB cases worldwide and 15% to 22% of new cases in parts of the former Soviet Union and China, the World Health Organization said Tuesday. The WHO report, the first new survey of TB incidence in four years, estimates that there are nearly 500,000 new cases of multidrug-resistant TB, commonly known as MDR TB -- about 5% of the 9 million total new cases of TB each year.
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SCIENCE
March 29, 2007 | Jia-Rui Chong, Times Staff Writer
The World Health Organization recommended Wednesday that circumcision immediately become part of the frontline strategy to combat AIDS -- a move that the group said could save millions of lives. The benefit would be greatest in countries with widespread epidemics and low rates of circumcision, such as those in southern and eastern Africa, the WHO said. "The recommendations represent a significant step forward in HIV prevention," said Dr. Kevin De Cock, director of the WHO's HIV/AIDS Department.
WORLD
November 9, 2006 | From Times Wire Reports
Dr. Margaret Chan, who has spearheaded the World Health Organization's fight against bird flu, was chosen to head the Geneva-based agency through June 2012. Chan was Hong Kong's health director when the territory reported the world's first known human outbreak of the H5N1 bird flu virus in 1997. Six people died, but Chan was credited with heading off a human health crisis by ordering the slaughter of Hong Kong's entire poultry population -- about 1.5 million birds -- in three days.
SCIENCE
July 22, 2006 | Jia-Rui Chong, Times Staff Writer
The Indonesian Ministry of Health confirmed Thursday the country's 42nd human death from avian influenza, a toll that gave the nation, along with Vietnam, the most deaths from the virus. The latest victim, a 44-year-old man from East Jakarta, died July 12, the World Health Organization said. The man was probably infected by poultry around his home or the wet market where he worked at a food stall, the organization said. The strain of bird flu known as H5N1 is still primarily an animal disease.
WORLD
May 28, 2006 | From Times Wire Reports
The biggest case yet of humans possibly infecting others with bird flu prompted the World Health Organization to put the maker of the antiviral drug Tamiflu on alert for possible shipment of the global stockpile for the first time, officials said. Officials said the stockpile alert occurred Monday as experts puzzled over why six of seven Indonesians from a family in a village in North Sumatra province died after they became infected with the H5N1 virus.
SCIENCE
May 25, 2006 | Jia-Rui Chong, Times Staff Writer
Six family members in Indonesia who died of bird flu probably infected one another with the virus after a seventh apparently contracted it from birds, raising the possibility that the virus is becoming more efficient in spreading among humans. Officials with the World Health Organization emphasized that the family members had contracted the disease through close contact with one another, and there was no evidence the virus has the ability to spark a quick-spreading pandemic.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 23, 2006 | Thomas H. Maugh II, Times Staff Writer
Dr. Lee Jong-wook, director-general of the World Health Organization and the driving force in that agency's effort to expand AIDS treatment to the developing world, died Monday in Geneva following surgery to remove a blood clot from his brain. The first Korean to head a United Nations agency, Lee was 61.
SCIENCE
March 29, 2006 | Thomas H. Maugh II, Times Staff Writer
The World Health Organization has fallen well short of its goal of getting 3 million AIDS patients in treatment by the end of 2005, with fewer than half that number now receiving life-sustaining antiretroviral therapy, according to a report issued Tuesday. The program tripled the number of people in low- and moderate-income countries receiving drugs between 2003 and 2005, but overall, only one in every five people requiring treatment now receives it -- a total of 1.
WORLD
March 18, 2006 | Sam Enriquez, Times Staff Writer
Of the thousands of entrepreneurs, protesters, do-gooders and policymakers here for the World Water Forum, few can match the passion of Suresh Baral. Infants and young children were dying in Baral's village in Nepal of intestinal diseases spread by bad hygiene, primitive sanitation and lack of clean water, as they do by the hundreds of thousands each year throughout the Third World. So 13-year-old Suresh and his friends started going door-to-door to save some of them.
WORLD
December 24, 2005 | From Associated Press
A senior World Health Organization official complained Friday that China has not shared with his agency any samples of a deadly bird flu virus strain from its dozens of outbreaks in poultry. WHO Asia-Pacific Director Shigeru Omi said that sharing samples of the H5N1 virus is crucial to diagnosing new cases and developing a vaccine. China's Agriculture Ministry shared five samples collected from infected birds last year but has failed to provide any this year, Omi said.
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