Deadly earthquake hits central China
MANILA, 21 April 2013 – An earthquake hit Sichuan province in central China on 20 April 2013, killing nearly 200 people and injuring nearly 6000, according to the latest official report. Almost all the homes in Longmen Township, Lushan County, at the earthquake’s epicentre, are said to have collapsed, and hospitals have had to suspend their work. Local roads are badly damaged and blocked by landslides, and dozens of bridges are damaged to varying degrees. The government is working to restore power, communication, gas and water to the affected population of more than 1.5 million people. The World Health Organization and other United Nations agencies are in close contact with the relevant governmental ministries and preparing to assist upon request.
WHO Healthy Islands Recognition 2012-2013
FIJI, 15 March 2013 – Healthy Pacific islands are places where children are nurtured in body and mind; where environments invite learning and leisure; where people work and age with dignity; where ecological balance is a source of pride; and where the oceans that sustain life are protected. They are places that fully address the islands' triple burden of communicable and noncommunicable diseases and of diseases resulting from climate change. To recognize the great work that being done in making the Healthy Islands concept a reality, WHO invites applications for the WHO Healthy Islands Recognition 2012-2013. Eligible applicants include communities—such as schools, workplaces, faith-based groups, villages, districts and provinces—and governmental and nongovernmental organizations and agencies in 21 Pacific Island countries, territories and areas. Recognition will be given in two categories: best practice and best proposal. For detailed information, including instructions on how to apply, please click on the link at the bottom of this announcement. The deadline for submission is 31 March 2013.
Heavy rains hamper health response to Typhoon Bopha
PHILIPPINES, 29 January 2013 – Heavy rains and floods last week hampered the health response to the parts of Davao Oriental province that were most affected by Typhoon Bopha, which struck the southern Philippines in early December 2012, killing 1146 people, displacing around 850 000 and destroying or damaging nearly 200 000 dwelllings. The rains damaged outpatient tents on the grounds of the Cateel District Hospital. They also damaged a bridge in Caraga, cutting off several districts from health care. The United Nations health response targets more than 100 000 people in the most-affected municipalities of Boston, Cateel and Baganga, and another approximately 36 000 people in Caraga municipality who were receiving suboptimal health services because of the bad weather. On 25 January, the United Nations appealed for an extra US$76 million to help typhoon survivors. This was in addition to the US$65 million for which it had appealed on 10 December.