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Migrant Crisis: 385 people including an infant rescued by Italian Navy

In 2016, about 189,000 people have arrived in Europe by sea, including around 156,000 in Greece and 32,000 in Italy as the continent's worst refugee and migrant crisis since World War II continues.

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Italian Navy Vessel. Image source: IANS

Rome- An Italian navy vessel on Monday rescued 385 migrants from the Mediterranean on Monday including 42 women and 40 children, among them a newborn baby.

“They are all in good health, some have a few minor medical problems but nothing serious,” the captain of the ‘Bettica’ navy frigate, Francesco Iavazzo, told Adnkronos.

The migrants were rescued in a number of operations with backup from an Irish navy vessel that had rescued more than 300 people in ongoing operations, Iavazzo said.

“The rise in the number of crossings is probably due to the good weather as it’s easier to sail when the sea is calm.”

European migrant crisis 2015. Image source: Wikipedia
European migrant crisis
2015. Image source: Wikipedia

Libyan coastguard intercepted seven boats off Sabratha, west of Tripoli earlier on Monday with a total 850 people on board. The passengers included 79 women of whom eleven were pregnant, the coastguard said.

So far this year, some 189,000 people have arrived in Europe by sea, including around 156,000 in Greece and 32,000 in Italy as the continent’s worst refugee and migrant crisis since World War II continues.

Some 1.1 million people reached Europe in 2015, fleeing conflict and poverty in the Middle East, Africa and Asia. (IANS)

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Africa: Initiative Aims to Expand Diabetes Treatment

Diabetes, a disease that once mainly affected rich countries, is now most prevalent in low-and-middle-income countries

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Africa, Initiative, Diabetes
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.

Africa, Initiative, Diabetes
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.

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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)