Useful Resources

Housing impacts health: New WHO Guidelines on Housing and Health
World Health Organisation: WHO, Geneva, 2018

The quality of housing has major implications for people’s health. Poor housing is associated with a wide range of health conditions such as respiratory diseases including asthma, cardiovascular diseases, injuries, mental health and infectious diseases including tuberculosis, influenza and diarrhoea. Housing is becoming increasingly important to public health due to demographic and climate changes, according to the latest WHO Housing and health guidelines re¬leased today. The guidelines provide new evidence-based recommendations on how to reduce major health risks associated with poor housing conditions in 4 areas: Inadequate living space (crowding); low and high indoor temperatures; injury hazards in the home; and accessibility of housing for people with functional impairments.

Free online course: Global Health and Disability: Leaving no one behind
International Centre for Evidence in Disability: UK, 2018

Around 15% of the world’s population, or 1 billion people, live with some form of disability, with numbers continuing to rise over the coming decades. People with disabilities are often overlooked in national and international development, and can face widespread barriers in accessing services, including health and rehabilitation services, even though simple initiatives are available to enable access. This three week course aims to raise awareness about the importance of health and well-being of people with disabilities in the context of the global development agenda: Leaving no one behind.

Rees-Roberts D; Cooke P: 2016

CATCH is a fictional short film about a father and daughter quarantined in their home in a post-antibiotic world. CATCH is set in a near future world where antibiotic resistance has made antibiotics useless. Although that is a real potential future, the producers argue that it is possible to work now to stop that future from happening. There are lots of simple things people can all do to try to avoid the post-antibiotic future portrayed in CATCH: Always wash hands when handling and preparing food to avoid cross-contamination, especially between raw and ready-prepared food. Never pressure a doctor for antibiotics, as antibiotics can only treat bacterial infections. Never take unprescribed antibiotics. Always finish a prescribed course of antibiotics. Never stop taking antibiotics before the course is finished as prescribed - even if one starts feel better, see it through to the end. Raise awareness about the issue of antibiotic resistance, and what communities can do to combat it. Talk to friends, family, colleagues, and local politicians!

Toolkit for International Universal Health Coverage Day
UHC2030 & 12.12 Coordination Group: December 2018

Universal health coverage (UHC) ensures all people, everywhere, can access the quality health services they need without suffering financial hardship. World leaders have agreed: every person—no matter who they are, where they live, or how much money they have—should be able to access quality health services without suffering financial hardship. To achieve this vision of universal health coverage by 2030, there is a need for collective action now to build strong, equitable health systems in every country. The UHC2030 & 12.12 Coordination Group have built a toolkit to use to promote these goals. It provides actions for policy makers, civil society and individuals, resources to share in communities around the world and key messages to share on social media.

Mental Health Atlas 2017
World Health Organisation: WHO, Geneva, 2018

WHO's Mental Health Atlas 2017 reveals that although some countries have made progress in mental health policy-making and planning, there is a global shortage of health workers trained in mental health and a lack of investment in community-based mental health -based mental health facilities. The inclusion of mental health in the Sustainable Development Agenda, which was adopted at the United Nations General Assembly in September 2015, is likely to have a positive impact on communities and countries where millions of people will receive much needed help. Data included in Mental Health Atlas 2017 demonstrates that progressive development is being made in relation to mental health policies, laws, programmes and services across WHO Member States. However extensive efforts, commitment and resources at global and country level are needed to meet the global targets.

Country progress in the implementation of the global action plan on antimicrobial resistance: WHO, FAO and OIE global tripartite database
World Health Organisation: WHO Geneva, 2018

The World Health Organisation hosts this global open-access tripartite antimicrobial resistance database that provides access to information on the status of countries’ regarding the implementation of the global action plan and actions to address antimicrobial resistance across all sectors. Country responses are visualized through maps and can be sorted by regions and by income groups. Information captured in this database is a result of a country self-assessment questionnaire reporting on progress in: developing national antimicrobial resistance action plans; working with multiple sectors; and implementing key actions to address antimicrobial resistance. The database currently contains data for the reporting year 2016-17 and 2017-18.

2018 Africa Scorecard on Domestic Financing for Health
African Union Commission: AU 2018

The Africa Scorecard on Domestic Financing for Health is a health financing management tool for governments on the African continent. AidSpan, the independent observer of the Global Fund, describes the scorecard as a tool intended to help with financial planning for the health sector and with monitoring government domestic health spending performance against key global and regional health financing benchmarks. It is also intended to help governments compare their performance with each other. The 2018 Africa Scorecard on Domestic Financing for Health was adopted by the African Union Heads of State and Government Assembly on 2 July 2018 during the Summit in Nouakchott, Islamic Republic of Mauritania. The Scorecard can be accessed in English, French and Portuguese.

Outbreaks: Behind the headlines
World Health Organisation: WHO, Geneva, 2018

At any one time, dozens of infectious disease outbreaks are happening around the world. Those on the frontlines are often more visible, but behind the scenes, many activities are taking place to control the spread of these diseases. In this special feature, the World Health Organisation highlights a series of recent health emergencies, telling the stories behind the headlines and exploring the many different dimensions of an outbreak response. Humanitarian crises, forced migration, environmental degradation, climate change, reduced access to health services and prolonged conflict often provide exactly the right conditions for an outbreak to occur. Diphtheria - a bacterial disease that is preventable through a simple inexpensive vaccine – is one such example. Dr. Khadimul Anam Mazhar working in the Rohingya refugee camps in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh, found diptheria to be the main focus of his work. The outbreaks of Ebola in DRC and diphtheria among the Rohingya refugees have starkly different profiles. One was a naturally occurring zoonosis in a remote area, the other the result of a major migration of a highly stressed population. For all the differences, however, they also share similar traits: prolonged conflict, inadequate water and sanitation systems, and struggling health systems. The cases highlight two critical and often overlooked issues: 1) multiple countries around the world are facing severe health crises, and 2) many of these countries have several health crises occurring at the same time. While it is critical to treat patients affected by epidemic diseases, the response is much more than purely medical. The range of necessary expertise includes epidemiologists, logisticians, clinicians, data managers, anthropologists and planners.

Managing epidemics: Key facts about major deadly diseases
World Health Organisation: WHO, Geneva, 2018

This manual provides concise and up-to-date knowledge on 15 infectious diseases that have the potential to become international threats, and tips on how to respond to each of them. The 21st century has already been marked by major epidemics. Old diseases - cholera, plague and yellow fever - have returned, and new ones have emerged - SARS, pandemic influenza, MERS, Ebola and Zika. These epidemics and their impact on global public health have convinced the world's governments of the need for a collective and coordinated defence against emerging public health threats and accelerated the revision of the International Health Regulations (2005), that entered into force in 2007. The diseases covered are: Ebola virus disease, lassa fever, Crimean-Congo haemorrhagic fever, yellow fever, Zika, chikungunya, avian and other zoonotic influenza, seasonal influenza, pandemic influenza, Middle-East respiratory syndrome (MERS), cholera, monkeypox, plague, leptospirosis and meningococcal meningitis. Although originally developed as guidance for WHO officials, this publication is available to a wide readership including all frontline responders - communities, government officials, non-state actors and public health professionals - who need to respond rapidly and effectively when an outbreak is detected.

World Health Statistics 2018: Monitoring health for the SDGs
World Health Organisation, Geneva, 2018

The World Health Statistics series is WHO’s annual snapshot of the state of the world’s health. This 2018 edition contains the latest available data for 36 health-related Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) indicators. It also links to the three SDG-aligned strategic priorities of the WHO’s 13th General Programme of Work: achieving universal health coverage, addressing health emergencies and promoting healthier populations. The latest data available shows that less than half the people in the world today get all of the health services they need. In 2010, almost 100 million people were pushed into extreme poverty because they had to pay for health services out of their own pockets. 13 million people die every year before the age of 70 from cardiovascular disease, chronic respiratory disease, diabetes and cancer – most in low and middle-income countries.