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  • br For more than a decade WHO

    2019-04-22


    For more than a decade, WHO has focused its efforts against infectious diseases in Africa on HIV, tuberculosis, and malaria. HIV benefited from unprecedented efforts to enable diagnosis and prevention of transmission and to provide therapy at low cost. National networks of health clinics, transport of samples, centralised and—more recently—point-of-care testing, and monitoring of antiretroviral treatment (ART) by CD4 counts and viral load were put into place. External financial support from governments (eg, from the President\'s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief and the European Union), international funding agencies, and numerous charities has allowed roughly 50% of HIV-infected people in sub-Saharan Africa to benefit from ART that is more than 90% effective. In rivastigmine tartrate to HIV, and as noted in an Article in by Maud Lemoine and colleagues, little attention is being paid to chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection, which affects 80–100 million people in sub-Saharan Africa and is a major cause of mortality from decompensated cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma. Lemoine and colleagues and others have reported that 5–20% of the 1 billion people living in sub-Saharan Africa are positive for hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) and roughly 5% of them are at high risk of fatal complications. WHO has recently released a set of recommendations addressing chronic HBV infection, some of which are adapted to the low-income and middle-income countries that bear most of the burden. HBV infection is usually asymptomatic when acquired and remains clinically silent until it is too late for effective treatment. Lemoine and colleagues and—in an associated cost-effectiveness Article in —Shevanthi Nayagam and colleagues propose and show that it is feasible to systematically and affordably screen, assess, and effectively treat chronic HBV infection in a sub-Saharan African setting. At present, the only infected but asymptomatic individuals identified are blood donors who are screened for HBsAg before they can donate. These people can then be assessed for chronic HBV infection and receive appropriate antiviral treatment. However, receipt of such treatment is uncommon in sub-Saharan Africa because, although HBsAg screening is mandatory, improving the donor\'s health is considered unaffordable.
    Last autumn the image of a young Syrian boy lying dead on a Turkish beach highlighted the humanitarian plight of refugees and influenced public opinion. The photograph of Alan Kurdi spoke to people more powerfully than any words could have done. Photographs can move us, enrage us, challenge our ideas, and provoke us to action. Other pictures can bring joy and hope. In last year\'s Highlights photography competition, one of the winning images showed a 5-year-old boy in Zimbabwe looking in a mirror with rapt attention at his newly repaired cleft lip. These two pictures remind us how photographs capture a moment in a powerful and moving way. Images can highlight an important health issue and we invite readers to send us photographs for our rivastigmine tartrate annual photography competition, Highlights 2016. Whether your focus is local or global, we want you to send us photographs that surprise and move us by telling a story about health today. We are interested in photographs that capture any health issue in a thought-provoking way. As in previous years, and will run the competition together. Winning photographs will be published in \'s final issue of 2016 and could be selected for the front cover of . Each entry should be submitted with 300 accompanying words that put the image in context. Submissions should not have been previously published in print or online. If a person or patient is featured then you must obtain and keep written consent from the individual or, where this is not an option, their next of kin. Please complete the while retaining copies of the signed forms. We also encourage you to submit any additional media to support your submission online, such as video or audio features.