Following research with more than 600 people living with a terminal illness or caring for someone at the end of life, Compassion in Dying has published an innovative new booklet: What now? Questions to ask after a terminal diagnosis. 'What now? is designed to help people ask questions and find the information they need, so that they can make informed decisions about their treatment and care – helping them to live well in the time they have left. 'What now?
Growth monitoring and regular developmental assessments are key components of what all parents need in order to rest assured that their infants and toddlers are on track or, if not, so that they can intervene early on, before any deviations affect the child's future.
Healthcare-related research is largely regional. Put simply, this is because disease burdens differ between world regions. Even global burdens, such as ischaemic heart disease and cancer, display distinctive characteristics in certain regions that are not seen in others. Regional differences in infrastructure, resources and human capital further compound the differences seen, as they affect the way in which the local scientific community can interact with the local disease burden. As such, it seems fair to assume that healthcare-related research ought to be regionally distributed.
Mobile phones have the potential to improve access to healthcare information and services in low-resourced settings. This study investigated the use of mobile phones among patients with chronic diseases, pregnant women, and health workers to enhance primary healthcare in rural South Africa. Qualitative research was undertaken in Mpumalanga in 2014. Semi structured in-depth interviews were conducted with 113 patients and 43 health workers from seven primary healthcare clinics and one district hospital. Data were thematically analysed.
I don't know how we can go beyond journals. In addition to the fact that journals fulfil a limited need, many African health practitioners are too overwhelmed to seat down and write an article on their daily experiences & tie this with broad health literature. If we limit knowledge sharing to journals and their rigorous reviewing processes, we miss a lot of real-time 'truths'. Emphasis on journals suggest the written word is the only way knowledge about health issues can travel.
All my career years in WHO (over 29 years) I always believed that the electronic publishing should not replace paper based publishing. They should complement each other. Publishers who think that electronic publishing should replace paper publishing are wrong. I made this position very clear and implemented it when I was director in WHO.
Many will be familiar with the need for "research to policy" or R2P. But that in itself is a shortened form of "research to policy to practice" or R2P2P. Clearly, health policies should be based on the best and most appropriate research. But that is not enough. If sound health policies don't then go into clinical practice, they are just empty words. Effort needs to be devoted to each link in this chain.
Najeeb al-Shorbaji hit the nail on the head last year when he wrote in a submission to this email list: "Health workers and most practitioners in the field do not need scientific articles written by academicians. They need practical information, best practices, case studies, stories from the field, lessons learned and guidance on how to do things".
At Africa Health journal, that is precisely what we have tried to do since launch in October 1978.
Health experts in Afghanistan’s southern Helmand province warn that persistent rumours that their vaccines actual harm children are hampering efforts to combat polio. Medical professionals report significant resistance from village elders and mullahs, particularly in more remote districts, who claim the injections contain viruses designed by Western governments to deliberately hurt people in the Muslim world.
Herbal medicine has been accepted as a component of global health. The current investment going into research and development of herbal products is unprecedented. It is very sad to note that in country like Nigeria where over 80% of her population relies on herbs for daily health needs, only few of such herbs have been validated using research. In a recent study conducted in Ibadan, it was discovered that of the herbal products evaluated, only about 20% of the products were validated using clinical trial. In spite of this, over 80% of the manufacturers made various treatment claims.