Pfizer and Cipla are teaming up with the American Cancer Society and the Clinton Health Access Initiative to provide cheap chemotherapy drugs to six nations in Africa that have been hit the hardest by treatable cancers. They’re taking inspiration from Pepfar, which is the (US) President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, and not a program designed to export pep rallies far across the globe. Pepfar is responsible for many of the 14 million Africans who now have access to HIV medications, and the above collaboration is keen to replicate that kind of success. The drug companies will sell 16 generic chemotherapies at a fraction of what they cost in more well-off countries—minimizing profits, but maximizing positive PR. Needless to say: well done, all involved.
In the spirit of American Independence Day, blood-sucking, malaria-spreading mosquito jerks have met their match. Africa alone holds 90% of the world’s malaria deaths, but thanks to W (the President, not the Hotel) and the President’s Malaria Initiative (P.M.I.) we’re starting to see striking results in the fight against malaria. So much so that researchers have determined that, in the countries helped by this initiative, about 1.7 million baby and toddler deaths have been prevented. And guess what? The $500M a year that is spent on this all comes from the good ole US of A. That’s right. American donations have helped save nearly two million children from malaria through P.M.I. Suck on that mosquitos. America isn’t all baseball, burgers, and freedom. It’s a malaria-crushing, baby-saving, philanthropic nation, too.
Last Tuesday, the World Health Organization (WHO) elected their first African Director-General. First, who knew they elected this position? Second, it’s about time. Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus was nominated by his home country of Ethiopia and has an impressive resume of international posts. It seems like the WHO did its homework in selecting someone from Africa. According to the UN, Africa is expected to have ~25% of the world’s population by 2050 and ~39% by 2100, representing the majority of the population growth. Well done WHO, but we do wonder if they know that WHAT plays second base and I DON’T KNOW plays third.