NOTICEABLE DIFFERENCE: Pollution, congested development and lack of a railway system such as the MRTS are depriving residents of north Chennai of quality life. A picture of contrast between Tondiarpet and Saidapet. The lines dividing north and south Chennai are not only drawn across access to quality healthcare, education or the standard of living but also physically drawn by the Railways.

On Oct 17, 2007, Bill and Melinda Gates called for complete eradication to be adopted as the new goal for the age-old fight against malaria, with the Director General of WHO, Margaret Chan, promptly echoing their conviction. Although debate over the wisdom of this target will continue, growing impatience with the low ambitions of current efforts, fuelled by reductions in morbidity and mortality in some countries and progress in the development of new drugs and the first-ever vaccine, will lead many decision makers to adopt eradication of malaria as the primary aim for their organisations.

As many as 15 districts of Punjab have been declared high risk areas by the World Health Organisation and United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) for the communicable diseases, gastroenteritis and diarrhoea. The warning has been issued based on reports showing alarming increase in the number of patients in these districts suffering from the above-mentioned diseases. The districts include: Lahore, Rawalpindi, Khushab, Gujranwala, Faisalabad, Kasur, Bahawalnagar, Multan, Muzaffargarh, DG Khan, Sialkot, Gujrat, Jhang, Mandi Bahuddin and Narowal.

MALARIA, the silent killer of the Chittagong Hill Tracts, claimed 22 lives and attacked over 20,000 during three months

Malaria, a disease without borders, is preventable and treatable however it needs a bolder commitment from donors and member states if it is to be brought under control. Malaria remains a major health problem in the South-East Asia region with 83% of its population at risks. There are an estimated 20 million cases and 100,000 deaths each year from malaria in the region.


Claiming that the vector borne diseases are limited mostly to construction sites, the State Task Force on vector borne diseases, which held its maiden meeting today decided to focus on eliminating the diseases from the State. Addressing a press conference, after chairing the meeting of State Task Force Health Secretary Anand Prakash stated that though the diseases cannot be eradicated completely it can be controlled.

ANTHONY MCMICHAEL heads the International Centre for Epidemiology and Population Health at the Australian National University, and is a member of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. He talks to VIBHA VARSHNEY and MARIO D'SOUZA about the health risks from global environmental changes

What are the impacts of climate change on disease outbreaks?

About 19 people died of Malaria and more than 100 people were admitted to different hospitals in the last 14 days in Tripura, official sources today said. Mungiakami block under Taliamura subdivison of West Tripura district was the worst affected with nine deaths reported from there so far. However, a health worker in Teliamura primary health centre said there was nothing to worry as the centre has adequate medicines to cope up with the situation.