World Cancer Day 2015: Statistics, facts and ‘Not Beyond Us’ theme

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World Cancer Day, observed annually on 4 February, is dedicated to raising awareness of cancer and encouraging its prevention, detection and treatment. Cancers are among the leading causes of death worldwide, with approximately 14 million new cases and 8.2 million cancer-related deaths in 2012. Yet thanks to breakthroughs in research and treatment, cancer survival rates […]


The public health challenge of this century

Sania Nishtar 2

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 […]


The World Health Organization Is Fighting Childhood Obesity

Sania Nishtar 2

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 […]


Dr. Brundtland’s Impact on Global Health; We Must Stay the Course

Derek Yach

I recently co-authored a piece in the journal Public Health about my esteemed colleague, Dr. Gro Harlem Brundtland, former Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO) and the first female Prime Minister of Norway. A medical doctor who’s championed health as a human right and focused on sustainable development throughout her illustrious career, Dr. Brundtland […]


Five Reasons Why ‘Food’ Is A Massive Global Health Issue

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Last week in Stockholm, Sweden, I was asked to present an insight into the links between food and global health to the Swedish Medical Society Conference; a brief outline on the parallels and overlap between what we eat, the systems that produce and support that consumption, and the health of our populations. Now this is no […]


Diabetes soars in Pakistan’s urban centres

Cory Couillard

The prevalence of type 2 diabetes is skyrocketing throughout Pakistan’s urban centres that grow daily as migrants arrive from rural areas. In response, the International Diabetes Federation and Diabetic Association of Pakistan lead awareness, education and prevention campaigns peaking on World Diabetes Day. In Pakistan, approximately 120 000 people die annually of diabetes-related complications. Even […]


A message from Prof. Samad Shera on World Diabetes Day

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The International Diabetes Federation (IDF) and World Health Organisation(WHO) are holding World Diabetes Day since 1991 in response to growing concerns about the escalating threat of diabetes worldwide. World Diabetes Day has also become United Nation’s Day since 2007. The theme of the World Diabetes Day for 2009-2013 is “Diabetes Education and Prevention”. The Campaign […]


Latest Research on Tobacco Use and Health Care Cost Has Global Implications

Derek Yach

This month’s articles on health care costs and tobacco control in the South African Medical Journal (SAMJ) have far reaching implications beyond the shores of South Africa. The latest Global Burden of Disease data (Lancet, 2012) show that two of the top three risk factors that contribute to the highest burden of disease in Western Europe and the U.S. […]


World No Tobacco Day 2013: Not just another day

Farrukh Qureshi

The 31st of May 2013 will mark the 26th year of successive observance of World No Tobacco Day across the world, when WHO Member States resolved to commemorate a day every year to say NO to use of tobacco through a World Health Assembly Resolution in 1988. While this year’s message calls  to  ‘free ourselves’ […]