The Girl Summit 2014 and the Girls Declaration

“I was not put on this earth to be invisible” “I was not born to be denied” Two statements from the powerful Girls Declaration at the conclusion of the Girls Summit 2014. The Summit ended in London with hundreds of millions of pounds committed in an effort to end female genital mutilation (FGM) and child, […]


The case for including Family Planning in the post-2015 framework

This issue of the Bulletin of the World Health Organization, Tricia Petruney and Colleagues argue why Family Planning needs to be part of the post 2015 goals. They state that “A multitude of stakeholders have since [2010, which is when evidence showed family planning’s connection to all eight MDGs] advocated for family planning to be […]


Girl Summit 2014

 If you are not in London attending the Girl Summit this week, it doesn’t mean you can’t participate in the global movement, which the Summit envisages rallying to end child, early and forced marriage (CEFM) and female genital mutilation (FGM) for all girls within a generation. Pledge support for this through Twitter and Facebook. The conference, which […]


The 20th International AIDS Conference has commenced

The 20th International AIDS Conference being held in Melbourne, Australia started on a somber note as it mourned the loss of 6 of its colleagues, who were on way to attend this international event and did not make it – their lives lost to a tragic event as the Malaysian airliner they were traveling on […]


Health promotion through eHealth: The case of mDiabetes in Senegal

Recently a post on the WHO website caught my eye. The title is self explanatory. “Mobile phones help people with diabetes to manage fasting and feasting during Ramadan”. We at Heartfile are heavily engaged in the use of mobile phones, with Heartfile Health Financing (HHF) which is an mHealth enabled social protection system protecting poor […]


The public health challenge of this century

A forty-five year old man at the prime of his life in Pakistan struggles with heart disease. He has been told that three of his major coronary arteries are critically blocked. His wife, at age 43 suffers from type 2 diabetes and has recently developed complications in both eyes, which could make her loose her […]


What Does It Take to Achieve Universal Health Coverage?

In a health clinic outside Nairobi, Kenya, Janet* waits to see a doctor. Janet is a 32-year-old widow and mother of four from Kibera, a neighborhood of Nairobi. Her 11-year-old daughter, Jane*, isn’t feeling well. Both mother and daughter are HIV-positive. Janet and Jane are lucky to live walking distance to the Langata Health Center, […]


The World Health Organization Is Fighting Childhood Obesity

Earlier last week, the Director General of WHO announced the establishment of the WHO Commission on Ending Childhood Obesity to strengthen the scientific evidence base for action, to engage all stakeholders and to create awareness and build momentum for action to address this issue. The Director General of WHO has asked that I co-Chair the […]


Improving the Health of People and Planet, One Bite at a Time

What we put on our plates is key to solving some of today´s greatest health and environmental challenges. When I grew up in the early ’80s, my mother, a medical doctor, was an activist in a worldwide movement called International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear Wars. In those days, nuclear weapons were the biggest […]


What’s the Role of a Hospital?

In low- and middle-income countries, a hospital is often the first stop for citizens that experience illness, or the last stop when their health needs aren’t met by primary care. And as countries grow economically, the demand for quality health services at all levels will grow. So when a government decides that it needs to […]