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Merck Investigator Studies Program Offers Funds for Medical Research

Merck, a leading research-based healthcare company, is offering funds for academic and community-based medical researchers in a number of areas, including maternal health. In particular, research on pre-eclampsia and eclampsia, post-partum hemorrhage and maternal morbidity is of interest. Researchers based in the United States may apply through this website, and researchers from outside the U.S. should contact their local Merck office. Read more...

New Study Shows Effects of Health and Nutrition on Fetal Growth and Newborn Size

A new study by the INTERGROWTH-21st Project proves that the health and nutritional status of an expecting woman, and not their race or ethnicity, influences fetal growth and newborn size. This challenges earlier misconceptions that a baby’s country of birth or their race influences their growth and development.

The study reveals that the educational background, type of nutrition, environmental effects, and the health care an expecting woman receives shape fetal grown and newborn size.  Results from the study indicated that babies born to healthy mothers are surprisingly similar worldwide.

The study also shows that the fetal growth and birth length are similar when babies are born to well-nourished, well-educated mothers, despite their diverse ethnic and genetic backgrounds. The reverse of this is equally true: when expecting women are not educated and are unhealthy with poor nutritional care, the growth of the womb and newborn size is poor. Read more...

Deaths and Infections from HIV, Tuberculosis, and Malaria Plummet Globally

Originally posted by the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME)

New HIV infections dropped by almost one-third from the epidemic peak; TB deaths declined by 3.7% between 2000 and 2013; child deaths from malaria in sub-Saharan Africa have dropped 31.5% in the past decade. Despite major progress, the quality of programs to treat HIV varies widely.

PRESS RELEASE: SEATTLE—Today, fewer people are dying from HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria, according to a new, first-of-its-kind analysis of trend data from 188 countries. The pace of decline in deaths and infections has accelerated since 2000, when the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) were established to stop the spread of these diseases by 2015. Read more...

Study Shows that Laws Act as Barrier to Young People Getting Sexual and Reproductive Health Services

New research published today highlights how the law in different countries often restricts young people’s access to sexual and reproductive health services.

PRESS RELEASE: A series of reports by the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) and Coram Children’s Legal Centre (CCLC) also found that taboos and stigma related to young people’s sexuality are often made worse by restrictive laws.

The series called ‘Over-protected and Under-served: A multi-country study on legal barriers to young people’s access to sexual and reproductive health (SRH) services’  provides a global overview of laws relating to consent, sexual expression, equality and violence.

It looks at three case studies in the UK, Senegal and El Salvador – and explores how young people’s knowledge and perceptions of the law impact their access to sexual and reproductive health services.Findings from all three countries highlight young people’s uncertainty and confusion about whether they have the right to access SRH services: Read more...

New MDG Report Highlights the Need to Invest in Girls, Women, and Youth

Since their implementation fourteen years ago, the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) have made critical strides, yet challenges remain for girls, women and young people, says a new report released today by the United Nations. The Millennium Development Goals Report 2014 shows that while some MDG targets have been met, including the reduction of extreme poverty by half, other critical targets such as MDG 5—the reduction of maternal mortality by 75%—remain far off course. The report indicates that large-scale progress is possible, but only with sufficient funding and data to address staggering inequalities. Read more...

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