(Channels) - The Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) has suspended its impending industrial action scheduled to commence on Monday, January 6, 2014.
The Association made this declaration to the media at the end of its emergency National Executive Council (E-NEC) meeting held in Abuja on Saturday, January 4, 2014, to reappraise the efforts made so far to resolve their demands.
The NEC, while noting the several appeals made by Nigerians and the media for more time to be given by NMA for dialogue with government, also noted the efforts and the personal commitment of President Goodluck Jonathan and the Federal Government of Nigeria to address some of the demands of the association.
In a statement signed by the President, Nigerian Medical Association, Dr.
(Arabian Business) - The year 2014 is going to be a turning point in the history of the healthcare sector in the UAE, especially in Dubai. The most important thing is the implementation of the universal health coverage law in Dubai. Evolved after several years of homework, the system now guarantees quality healthcare for the entire Dubai population including citizens and expatriate employees - from labourers to higher management executives. Nearly two million additional people will be covered under the universal health coverage in Dubai. Provision of essential health coverage, routed through all major insurance companies, is mandatory for employers.
The law will have multiple positive effects on the emirate’s healthcare segment. All the existing health facilities should have to increase their capacity and infrastructure to accommodate the newly covered people.
(The Jakarta Post) - For Indonesians, welcoming this New Year also means welcoming national health insurance (JKN) with its evident problems.
Implemented via social security providers (BPJS), hopes and worries are mixed together. The JKN is certainly an Indonesian’s dream. However, we are still wondering whether the system will provide the finest universal health coverage and satisfy all stakeholders.
Some problems include rushed regulations as New Year’s Day approached, an unfinished financing and payment system and the availability of providers. The delays have resulted in uncertainty for nearly all stakeholders.
Providers remained uncertain how they will be paid by this system, until the Health Ministry issued regulation No. 69/2013 near the end of the year. However, its categorization of “mild”, “moderate” and “severe” ailments entitled to coverage of medical rehabilitation, for example, still lack explanation.
(The Jakarta Post) - After an almost 10-year delay, the law on the national social security system will be implemented on Jan. 1. This Law No. 40/2004 is equivalent to the Old Age, Survivor, Disability and Health Insurance Act or the Social Security Law of the US. Both laws were enacted after severe financial crises that alerted the countries to the crucial need for a social security system to overcome financial catastrophes.
While the US law covers four programs, Indonesia’s national social security covers five programs, namely health insurance, occupational injuries, provident funds, pension and death benefits.
There are some differences between the laws of the two countries. The US Social Security Law, without health insurance, was passed just three years after the 1932 Great Depression.
Indonesia’s law was enacted six years after the 1998 financial crisis and two years after the amendment of the 1945 Constitution.
(The Indian Express) - The UPA government is set to launch a Rs 15-crore advertising blitzkrieg for a Rs 150-crore revamp of the Jan Aushadhi scheme started in 2008.
Free drugs in government hospitals has been a proposed flagship programme of the Centre since a report of an expert group on universal health coverage pointed out that 70 per cent of out-of-pocket expenditure was on health.
(The Jakarta Post) - President Susilo Bambang Yu-dhoyono’s plan to publicly launch the much-awaited national health care program has sparked criticism from politicians and activists who see it as a desperate move to leverage the popularity of his struggling Democratic Party (PD) ahead of the upcoming general election.
Yudhoyono is scheduled to launch the operation of the Social Security Providers (BPJS), which manages universal health care coverage on Tuesday at the Bogor Presidential Palace in West Java, only a few days after he signed several government regulations urgently needed to support the implementation of the 2011 BPJS Law.
According to the law, state-owned insurance company Askes would provide universal coverage starting on Jan.
(LiveMint) - As Indians of all political persuasions brace themselves for a year of high drama where a fractious national campaign could end in an uncertain verdict and unforeseen coalitions, what will the future content and course of our health policy be? Will 2014 emerge as a year when health finally gets prioritized on the national development agenda, or will it get sidelined in the dust and din of politics as usual?
As is widely discussed in public health forums, but seldom acknowledged in political debate, India’s major health indicators fare poorly in comparison with our neighbours and economic peers. Our infant and maternal mortality rates are far higher than Sri Lanka’s and we are worse off than Bangladesh and Nepal in current rates and the recent speed of decline.
Our child malnutrition and immunization rates are worse than those of many countries in sub-Saharan Africa.
(Financial Express) - India’s health policy sent mixed signals in 2013. The National Urban Health Mission (NUHM) was finally signed off by the Union Cabinet. The NUHM, which prioritises primary health care for the urban poor, will be twinned with the National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) to become the National Health Mission (NHM). However, the overall budgetary allocations for health remained low, belying the 12th Plan’s promise of even a modest increase. The Plan’s commitment to Universal Health Coverage (UHC) is not reflected either in the level of public financing for health or in the Centre-State discussions on health sector reform.
The Planning Commission’s High Level Expert Group provided a comprehensive framework for UHC in 2011, to be incorporated in the 12th Plan (2012-17). The National Advisory Council also provided recommendations of a similar nature to the government in 2013. We do not yet have a clear road map, almost mid-way in the 12th Plan period.
(Medical News Today) - By mixing a key surface protein from a number of different strains of the malaria parasite, researchers say they have improved the effectiveness of a potential vaccine against the disease spread by mosquitoes.
A vaccine that targeted the AMA1 surface protein was effective in previous human testing, the researchers say, against only one strain of the protozoan Plasmodium falciparum - the malaria parasite - whereas their "cocktail" approach, using the protein from different strains, may lead to universal coverage against the microbe.
The study was led by Sheetij Dutta of the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research in Silver Spring, MD.
The AMA1 surface protein is needed by the malaria parasite to invade blood cells, and so cause disease; using it in a vaccine primes our immune system against the microbe.
Earlier designs of the AMA1-based vaccines were too specific, Dr.
(Channels) - The Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) has said that the aggregate performance of Nigeria’s health sector in 2013 was not remarkably different from that of 2012 despite some efforts made to address the challenges carried over from 2012.
In an assessment report on Nigeria’s health sector performance in 2013, the association said that the poor performance was as a result of the unsatisfactory amount allocated to the health sector in the 2013 National budget and the slow process of release of funds.
The assessment report issued by the president of the association, Dr.