Antibiotic Resistance and Typhoid

It’s hard to realize that typhoid in Pakistan can impact us, but it’s much more likely than we may like. There’s an epidemic in 14 districts there, some 850 cases of typhoid which have been spreading since 2016. The problem is that the particular strain is mostly resistant to five different kinds of antibiotics. And further that strain is expected to disseminate globally. An oral antibiotic azythromycin is hoped to help, the last to be tried. If it fails, typhoid could be untreatable. So the issue is no longer about typhoid, but about antibiotic resistance. That means as far as typhoid is concerned we would have to return to the pre antibiotic era, and that would involve a very high mortality rate. As it is 21 million people suffer from typhoid each year and 161,000 already die of it. A hope for containing this epidemic lies in a vaccination campaign—indirectly making the case for the importance of vaccination. Continue reading “Antibiotic Resistance and Typhoid”

Climate Change Migration

It’s easy to speak of the consequences of climate change, but being faced with potential numbers of one of its consequences is a wake-up call. The World Bank recently issued a Report “Groundswell: Preparing for Internal Climate Migration” saying that if current trends continue and we do nothing by 2050, 143 million people would be climate change refugees. The reasons are due to causes we’ve already heard about:  decreased crop productivity, water shortages and rising sea levels. Of course Continue reading “Climate Change Migration”

Gynecologie Sans Frontieres

We know refugees face hardships, yet sometimes it’s difficult to give these hardships a name or a proverbial face. Perhaps that is why I was moved by an article about the work of midwives in a refugee encampment in Calais in Northern France.  Young girls fleeing conflicts, epidemics, natural disasters and the like often come or become unaccompanied and usually end up under the protection of a “brother” who may be more pimp than sibling. They get pregnant either because of them, rape, or at times Continue reading “Gynecologie Sans Frontieres”

The Cost of Childbirth in the US

When the Duchess of Cambridge last gave birth, though she had access to certain amenities usually not available to the average person, the cost was the equivalent of $18,000. While the cost of childbirths in the US are very hard to determine due to various rates in different states and different hospitals, one study estimates them at about $32,000 for a vaginal delivery and $51,000 for a caesarean section. Although Continue reading “The Cost of Childbirth in the US”