Tag Archives: World Health Organization (WHO)

Yellow fever kills 10 Ethiopians, 35 infected; officials desperately trying to contain the deadly virus with vaccines

7 Nov

Posted by The Ethiopia Observatory (TEO)

Yellow fever has killed 10 people in the African country of Ethiopia, with at least 35 thought to have been infected since August.

The tropical disease is caused by a virus spread by mosquitoes and is most often found in Africa and the Americas.


Ethiopia’s recent outbreak is taking place in the Wolaita zone in the south-west of the country and has been traced back to a patient who got sick on August 21.

The World Health Organization is sending 1.45million vaccines to the country from its stockpile, in a desperate attempt to stop the virus spreading.

In a report WHO officials said: ‘This outbreak is of concern since the population of Ethiopia is highly susceptible to yellow fever due to absence of recent exposure and lack of large-scale immunization.’


Western travellers can be easily vaccinated against yellow fever before travelling to countries where the infection is found, but jabs are not routinely given out.

Symptoms of the infection include fever, headache, muscle pain, vomiting and fatigue, and it kills an estimated 30,000 people a year worldwide.

The World Health Organization earlier this year declared that yellow fever was a ‘major’ threat to humanity – but not an ‘urgent’ one.

Around 200,000 people are infected by the virus each year and it can spread quickly through unvaccinated populations via mosquitoes.

It cannot be caught directly from other people.


Ethiopia’s outbreak is happening in a region called the Southern Nations, Nationalities and Peoples’ Region (SNNP).

In October, 31,000 people in the Offa district of the region were given a vaccination in response to the outbreak, and there have not been any new cases since.

But the WHO warns there is still a risk of the infection spreading, partly because of armed conflict in the region.

Ethiopia is within the geographic ‘yellow fever belt’, which includes many central African and Central and South American countries, and had frequent outbreaks until the 1960s.

But there were no cases in the SNNP after the 1960s until an outbreak of 143 cases in 2013, according to the WHO.

Ethiopia plans to routinely vaccinate children against yellow fever from 2020.


The Republic of the Congo, a country in Western Africa, faced a similar problem earlier this year when officials said more than 180 people were thought to have caught yellow fever.

An epidemic was declared there on August 24 and officials vowed to start a free-of-charge national vaccination campaign.




World’s doctor gives WHO headache: A clear case of TPLF-inculcated intransparency

16 Jan

Posted by The Ethiopia Observatory (TEO)
by SARAH WHEATON, Politico: World’s doctor gives WHO a headache
Seven months into his tenure, the early moves of the WHO’s first African chief are stoking a backlash.

His supporters say Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus promised to shake the institution up. The critics, increasingly emboldened, say he’s undermining the World Health Organization’s effectiveness and putting its funding at risk.
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Meet the world’s most powerful doctor: Bill Gates

27 May

Posted by The Ethiopia Observatory (TEO)
by Natalie Huet & Carmen Paun, Politico
Some billionaires are satisfied with buying themselves an island. Bill Gates got a United Nations health agency in Geneva.

Meet the world’s most powerful doctor: Bill Gates
The software mogul’s sway over the World Health Organization spurs criticism about misplaced priorities and undue influence (credit: Politico)

Over the past decade, the world’s richest man has become the World Health Organization’s second biggest donor, second only to the United States and just above the United Kingdom. This largesse gives him outsized influence over its agenda, one that could grow as the U.S. and the U.K. threaten to cut funding if the agency doesn’t make a better investment case.

The result, say his critics, is that Gates’ priorities have become the WHO’s. Rather than focusing on strengthening health care in poor countries — that would help, in their view, to contain future outbreaks like the Ebola epidemic — the agency spends a disproportionate amount of its resources on projects with the measurable outcomes Gates prefers, such as the effort to eradicate polio.
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Before the new Director-General begins to face WHO & its dilemmas, Thursday was a night out in an exclusively Tigrean celebration

26 May

Posted by The Ethiopia Observatory (TEO)


In an article giving a good sense of what to expect in the World Health Organization (WHO) in the coming months and years and, following the election of Dr. Tedros Adhanom as Director-General, author Laurie Garrett, Senior Fellow for Global Health at the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) on May 25, 2017 wrote:

“For the first time in its seventy-year history, the World Health Organization (WHO) will, effective July 1, be led by a nonphysician, an African, and a person from the global South. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus of Ethiopia campaigned in an unprecedented election that gave 186 nations equal voice and saw three globetrotting candidates plead their cases.”
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Tedros Adhanom & his self-serving geographical rotation of the DG post ploy to Africans!

20 May

By Keffyalew Gebremedhin The Ethiopia Observatory (TEO)
The 1967 delightful movie “Guess who is coming for dinner” with Sidney Poitier as a WHO senior expert was the first of its type as an attempt to break barriers, though its theme of love and human dignity fictional.

In turning to reality, we note in a world that has declared 70 years ago in Article 2 (1) of the United Nations Charter the sovereign equality of nations, Africa never had the opportunity to provide its leadership to the World Health Organization (WHO) in the 70 years of its existence.
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Tedros Adhanom: Africa’s WHO post candidate counting the final hours, sipping champagne in Geneva!

19 May

By Keffyalew Gebremedhin The Ethiopia Observatory (TEO)
Dr. Tedros Adhanom has Friday sent out message to his supporters in Amharic (below) through the Ethiopian Mission in Geneva. His message urges them to show the resolve of Ethiopia’s famous athletes, as he is approaching the eleventh hour of his competition for the top post in the World Health Organization (WHO).
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The lead candidate for the world’s top health job is being accused of covering up deadly epidemics

18 May

Posted by The Ethiopia Observatory (TEO)
by Abdi Latif Dahir, QuartzAfrica
On May 22, member states of the World Health Organization will converge in Geneva to elect a new director-general to lead the 8,000-person global health agency. Among the three final candidates vying for the top job, one is now accused of covering up previous epidemics.
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Ethiopia’s candidate for the World Health Organization doesn’t like mentioning a certain disease

18 May

Posted by The Ethiopia observatory (TEO)
by Paul Schemm, The Washington Post, May 18, 2017

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia — Despite warnings from its own experts, the World Health Organization took two months to declare the devastating Ebola outbreak in 2014 an emergency, during which time 1,000 people died in West Africa. Leaked emails later revealed that officials were loath to call it an epidemic for fear of angering the African countries involved and hurting their economies.
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