8 August 2014 -- The first meeting of the Emergency Committee convened by the Director-General under the International Health Regulations (2005) regarding the 2014 Ebola Virus Disease outbreak in West Africa was held by teleconference on 6-7 August 2014. The Director-General accepted the Committee’s assessment and on 8 August 2014 declared the Ebola outbreak in West Africa a Public Health Emergency of International Concern.
WHO Representative Dr N. Paranietharan (Paranie) presented his credentials to the Hon. Foreign Minister Abul Hassan Mahmood Ali last week. The Foreign Minister welcomed Dr Paranie to Bangladesh and appreciated WHO’s contribution to the health sector and the attainment of the health-related Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), especially for reducing the deaths of mothers and their newborns. Hon. Minister Mahmood Ali told the WHO Representative that Bangladesh has been constantly pursuing health to be prominent in the development agenda.
Viral hepatitis kills approximately half a million people every year in the 11 countries of WHO’s South-East Asia Region. An estimated 100 million people are currently infected with hepatitis B virus and another 30 million with hepatitis C virus. These chronic infections have the potential to progress to cirrhosis and cancer of liver.
Every day, about 800 women die worldwide from pregnancy or childbirth-related complications. Severe bleeding during delivery or after childbirth is the commonest cause of maternal mortality and contributes to around 31% maternal deaths in Asia. Safe blood transfusion is one of the key life-saving interventions identified to protect these mothers and their newborns.