Never miss a story

Get subscribed to our newsletter


×
A blood sugare analyser and an insulin syringe are seen on a table, Nov. 13, 2019. (Photo: Diaa Bekheet) VOA

On the eve of World Diabetes Day, November 14, the World Health Organization is launching a new initiative it believes will allow greater access to life-saving insulin at lower prices for a greater number of people suffering from diabetes.Africa

More than 420 million people globally suffer from diabetes and are in need of insulin to stay alive. Diabetes, a disease that once mainly affected rich countries, is now most prevalent in low-and-middle-income countries.


There is an ample supply of insulin on the world market. But the medication is costly and unaffordable for most people in developing countries. The World Health Organization says it believes its first-ever insulin prequalification program will make the life-saving treatment widely available to poor people at dramatically lower prices.

The prequalification program is a tool for assessing the quality, safety and efficacy of a medicine. Emer Cooke, director of regulation of medicines and other health technologies at the WHO, says anyone who buys a WHO prequalified medication can be sure that the product is safe and effective.


More than 420 million people globally suffer from diabetes and are in need of insulin to stay alive. Pixabay

“We hope that by increasing the number of quality suppliers of insulin there will be a broader price range to cater for less-resourced health systems,” said Cooke. “We are also confident that competition will bring prices down. That way countries will have a greater choice of products that are more affordable.”

Three manufacturers control most of the global market for insulin. They set prices that are prohibitive for many people and countries. In the United States, the average price for a month’s supply of insulin is around $450.

In the lead-up to this launch, the World Health Organization collected data from 24 countries in four regions of the world. In some countries, the data show a month’s supply of insulin could cost between 15 and 22 percent of a worker’s take home pay.

Diabetes is the seventh leading cause of death. It can lead to costly and debilitating complications, such as heart attacks, stroke, kidney failure, blindness and lower limb amputations.

Also Read- Facebook Removes 3.2 Billion Fake Accounts

Overweight and obesity, as well as physical inactivity are major risk factors for type 2 diabetes, the most common type of diabetes. The disease is treatable with insulin and often preventable with a change of lifestyle that involves better diet and more exercise. (VOA)


Popular

wikimedia commons

Tenali Raman, courtier to Krishnadevaraya (A portrait)


Tenali Ramakrishna, or Tenali Raman as he is more popularly known is Birbal's equivalent in South India. A court jester and a scholar exuding great wisdom, Tenali Raman was known as one of the greatest courtiers in King Krishnadevaraya's court.

Keep Reading Show less
Photo by Pixabay

Battle at Lanka as mentioned in the Ramayana

It must be noted that different religions and societies in Southeast Asia have alternative narratives of Ramayana, one of the greatest epic.

Here are some of the versions of Ramayana!

Keep Reading Show less
Virendra Singh Gosain, Hindustan Times

Hijras are a community of people who include eunuchs, intersex, and transgender people

When a baby is born in an Indian household-they invite hijra to shower the newborn with their blessings for their blessings confer fertility, prosperity, and long life on the child. But when that child grows up we teach them to avert their eyes when a group of hijras passes by, we pass on the behaviour of treating hijras as lesser humans to our children. Whenever a child raises a question related to gender identity or sexuality they are shushed down. We're taught to believe that anything "deviant" and outside of traditional cis-heteronormativity is something to be ashamed of. This mentality raises anxious, scared queer adults who're ashamed of their own identity, and adults who bully people for "queer behaviour".

Hijras are a community of people who include eunuchs, intersex, and transgender people. They worship the Hindu goddess of chastity and fertility, Bahuchara Mata. Most hijras, but not all, choose to undergo a castration ceremony known as "nirvana" in which they remove their male genitalia as an offering to their goddess. The whole community is vibrant with hundreds of people with hundreds of ways of expression, the true identity of a hijra is complex and unique to each individual. In India, hijras prefer to refer to themselves as Kinner/Kinnar as it means the mythological beings who excel at singing and dancing.

Keep reading... Show less