Health

Afghan Women Face Invasive Virginity Tests, Says Rights Report

By Josh Smith KABUL, March 1 – Afghan women and girls accused of so-called moral crimes are often forced to endure invasive and scientifically questionable “virginity tests” by government doctors, according to human rights advocates. Improving the lives and rights of women remains a major challenge in Afghanistan nearly 15 years after a U.S.-backed military

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Lebanon Struggles to Help Syrian Refugees With Mental Health Problems

By Dana Halawi BEIRUT, March 1 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – Syrian refugee Fatmeh fled to safety in Lebanon in 2011 after militants raided the family home, beat her up and tried to rape her. But her problems were far from over. Two months after the attack Fatmeh—then aged about 12—developed Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

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Bill Gates Says Zika Response Better Than For Ebola

By Bill Berkrot NEW YORK, Feb 23 – The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has turned its attention to the Zika virus outbreak, and its founders said the response to the crisis, which may be linked to devastating birth defects in South America, has been better than for the 2014 Ebola outbreak in Africa. “We

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Those Incredible, Edible Bugs

Some companies are betting big that the average person won’t mind a cricket (or 75) in a cookie BY Stacey Anderson   Stefán Thoroddsen still has a few bugs to work out with his latest culinary endeavor. “My grandma thinks I’m crazy. She literally does not believe we are making an actual product,” says the

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WHO Issues $56 Million Plan to Combat Zika Virus

By Stephanie Nebehay GENEVA, Feb 17 – The World Health Organization (WHO) said on Wednesday that $56 million were needed to combat the Zika virus until June, including for the fast-tracking of vaccines, diagnostics and research studies into how it spreads. The funds, including $25 million for the WHO and its regional office, would also be

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More Than 50 Killed in Angola Yellow Fever Outbreak

LUANDA, Feb 15 – Fifty-one people have now died in a yellow fever outbreak in Angola, less than two months after it started spreading in the capital, the national director of health said. Health experts say the outbreak has been exacerbated by a breakdown in sanitation services and rubbish collection in Luanda and other cities,

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Zika Virus Tied to Birth Defects is Int’l Emergency: WHO

By Stephanie Nebehay and Ben Hirschler GENEVA/LONDON, Feb 2 – The World Health Organization on Monday declared the mosquito-borne Zika virus an international public health emergency due to its link to thousands of birth defects in Brazil, as the U.N. agency sought to build a global response to the threat. WHO Director-General Margaret Chan told

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Obama Calls for Rapid Zika Research as Virus Seen Spreading

By Julie Steenhuysen and Roberta Rampton CHICAGO/WASHINGTON, Jan 27 – President Barack Obama on Tuesday called for the rapid development of tests, vaccines and treatments to fight the mosquito-transmitted Zika virus, which has been linked to birth defects and could spread to the United States in warmer months. U.S. health officials are stepping up efforts

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Fear, Doubts Obstruct Efforts to Contain Ebola in Sierra Leone

By Umaru Fofana FREETOWN, Jan 21 – Community fear and suspicion in Sierra Leone are obstructing officials’ attempts to stop the spread of Ebola, health reports showed on Wednesday, after the West African nation reported its first cases of the deadly virus in months. The discovery of a case last week, only made posthumously, was

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