Jason Beaubien http://kunm.org en To Combat Ebola Outbreak, Health Officials Call For 'Drastic' Action http://kunm.org/post/combat-ebola-outbreak-health-officials-call-drastic-action Transcript <p>MELISSA BLOCK, HOST: <p>The World Health Organization, today, wrapped up an emergency meeting in West Africa on how to stop the growing Ebola outbreak there. The outbreak is now the largest ever recorded. The group Doctors Without Borders described the situation as out of control, and the World Health Organization is saying there needs to be drastic action to contain it. NPR's Jason Beaubien has been following the Ebola outbreak and monitoring this meeting in Ghana. He joins me now here in the studio. Thu, 03 Jul 2014 20:09:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 47524 at http://kunm.org As Death Count Rises, Health Officials Work To Stem Ebola's Spread http://kunm.org/post/death-count-rises-health-officials-work-stem-ebolas-spread The World Health Organization is reporting that the Ebola virus has yet to be contained in West Africa. It's one of the largest Ebola outbreaks in decades — with over 500 cases, some 330 of which ended in death. <div class="fullattribution">Copyright 2014 NPR. Wed, 18 Jun 2014 20:32:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 46815 at http://kunm.org Thriving Towns In East Africa Are Good News For A Parasitic Worm http://kunm.org/post/thriving-towns-are-good-news-parasitic-worm People trying to grow food and support their families on the shores of Lake Malawi are not only causing serious environmental problems, they're also causing a surge in a debilitating disease.<p>Thriving towns along the lake are changing the ecosystem in ways that are allowing a parasitic worm to flourish, researchers <a href="http://www.cell.com/trends/parasitology/abstract/S1471-4922(14)00038-5">reported</a> last week in the journal <em>Trends in Parasitology</em>.<p>The intestinal disease, called <a href="http://www.cdc.gov/parasites/schistosomiasis/">schistosomiasis</a>, won't kill you, but Wed, 28 May 2014 20:39:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 45874 at http://kunm.org Thriving Towns In East Africa Are Good News For A Parasitic Worm CIA Announces Plans To End Fake Vaccination Programs http://kunm.org/post/cia-announces-plans-end-fake-vaccination-programs The White House announced that the CIA will stop using fake vaccination programs to further its spy operations. The decision comes after leaders from U.S. public health schools brought the practice to light. <div class="fullattribution">Copyright 2014 NPR. Tue, 20 May 2014 20:37:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 45503 at http://kunm.org How U.S. Hospitals Are Planning To Stop The Deadly MERS Virus http://kunm.org/post/how-us-hospitals-are-planning-stop-deadly-mers-virus In the past month, Middle East respiratory syndrome has morphed from a little-known disease in the Arabian Peninsula to a major global health concern, with more than 300 cases in Saudi Arabia in April, 54 of them fatal.<p>Two cases have been reported in the U.S. as well — one in Indiana and one in <a href="http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2014/05/12/311879323/deadly-mers-virus-detected-in-florida">Florida</a>. Both men had worked in Saudi Arabia hospitals. Wed, 14 May 2014 21:45:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 45222 at http://kunm.org How U.S. Hospitals Are Planning To Stop The Deadly MERS Virus Gene Sequencing Could One Day Make Malaria Easier To Treat http://kunm.org/post/new-lab-technique-could-one-day-make-malaria-easier-treat Malaria has proved one of the hardest diseases on the planet to treat. The World Health Organization estimates there are nearly 200 million cases each year, and the parasitic infection is blamed for some 700,000 deaths annually.<p>One reason malaria may be so difficult to treat is that different types of malaria parasites can be streaming through the victim's body at the same time. Tue, 13 May 2014 20:38:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 45173 at http://kunm.org Gene Sequencing Could One Day Make Malaria Easier To Treat The Comeback Of Polio Is A Public Health Emergency http://kunm.org/post/comeback-polio-public-health-emergency It is, says the World Health Organization, "an extraordinary event." Polio is spreading to a degree that constitutes a public health emergency.<p>The global drive to wipe out the virus had driven the number of polio cases down from 300,000 in the late 1980s to just 417 cases last year. The World Health Organization has set a goal of wiping out polio by 2018.<p>But this year, polio has been reported in 10 countries, and there are fears the number could rise. Mon, 05 May 2014 22:35:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 44818 at http://kunm.org The Comeback Of Polio Is A Public Health Emergency To Fight Polio Outbreaks, WHO Lays Down New Rules http://kunm.org/post/fight-polio-outbreaks-who-lays-down-new-rules The World Health Organization is warning that recent outbreaks of polio in the Middle East, Africa and Asia mark a setback to the decades-long effort to eradicate the disease. In response, the WHO has declared a world health emergency. It's asking Syria, Pakistan and Cameroon — current polio hot spots — to require all travelers leaving those countries to show proof of vaccination. <div class="fullattribution">Copyright 2014 NPR. Mon, 05 May 2014 20:02:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 44806 at http://kunm.org Mysterious Kidney Disease Slays Farmworkers In Central America http://kunm.org/post/mysterious-kidney-disease-slays-farmworkers-central-america Manuel Antonio Tejarino used to be a lean, fit field hand.<a name="_GoBack"></a> During the sugar cane harvest, he'd swing a machete for hours, hacking at the thick, towering stalks.<p>Now Tejarino is slumped in a faded, cloth deck chair outside his sister's house on the outskirts of Chichigalpa, Nicaragua.<p>Tejarino's kidneys are failing. He's grown gaunt. His arms droop by his side. In the tropical midday heat, he alternates between wiping sweat off his brow and pulling a sweatshirt up over his bare chest.<p>"I feel like I'm burning," says Tejarino, 49. "My blood pressure goes down. Wed, 30 Apr 2014 07:30:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 44567 at http://kunm.org Mysterious Kidney Disease Slays Farmworkers In Central America Why The U.S. Is Worried About A Deadly Middle Eastern Virus http://kunm.org/post/why-us-worried-about-deadly-middle-eastern-virus <em><strong>UPDATE at 4:17 p.m. Friday:</strong> Saudi Arabia has confirmed 313 cases of the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome, including 92 deaths, the Ministry of Health <a href="http://www.moh.gov.sa/CoronaNew/PressReleases/Pages/mediastatemenet-2014-04-25-001.aspx">said</a> Friday. Of note, one of the 14 new patients caught the virus while working as a hospital receptionist.</em><p>The latest medical acronym to fear is MERS: Middle East Respiratory Syndrome. Thu, 24 Apr 2014 22:19:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 44339 at http://kunm.org Why The U.S. Is Worried About A Deadly Middle Eastern Virus Polio Threatens To Spread Through Central Africa http://kunm.org/post/polio-threatens-spread-through-central-africa Transcript <p>WADE GOODWYN, HOST: <p>In Central Africa, there are new fears that polio is on the move. Polio cases in Cameroon have spread to the tiny country of Equatorial Guinea, and there's concern it could spread even further in the region. Significant progress against polio has been made in much of the world this year. But global efforts to eradicate the virus could face a setback if polio gets a foothold in central Africa. Sat, 19 Apr 2014 12:12:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 44075 at http://kunm.org Polio Hits Equatorial Guinea, Threatens Central Africa http://kunm.org/post/polio-hits-equatorial-guinea-threatens-central-africa Health officials are worried.<p>After being free of polio for nearly 15 years, Equatorial Guinea has <a href="http://www.polioeradication.org/Dataandmonitoring/Poliothisweek.aspx">reported</a> two cases of the disease.<p>The children paralyzed are in two distant parts of the country. So the virus may have spread widely across the small nation.<p>The outbreak is dangerous, in part, because Equatorial Guinea has the worst polio vaccination rate in the world: 39 percent. Thu, 17 Apr 2014 07:29:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 43964 at http://kunm.org Polio Hits Equatorial Guinea, Threatens Central Africa Global Aid For Health Hits Record High As Funding Sources Shift http://kunm.org/post/global-aid-health-hits-record-high-though-total-aid-dipping International development aid has hit an all-time high, despite some nations dramatically slashing their foreign assistance budgets. As patterns of international assistance shift, an increasing amount of money is being invested in improving health in the developing world.<p>Donors from wealthy nations, aid groups, U.N. Tue, 08 Apr 2014 16:05:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 43576 at http://kunm.org Global Aid For Health Hits Record High As Funding Sources Shift To Save Her Husband's Life, A Woman Fights For Access To TB Drugs http://kunm.org/post/save-her-husbands-life-woman-fights-access-tb-drugs One year ago Pavel Rucsineanu was running out of options.<p>Drug-resistant tuberculosis was ravaging his lungs. And the disease had evolved into an incurable form, doctors said.<p>It's like an "infectious cancer," Dr. Tetru Alexandriuc <a href="http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2013/06/03/186072305/love-in-the-time-of-tb-a-young-family-fights-an-ancient-foe">said</a> at the time. "We have no other medicines" to treat Pavel, the doctor added. Wed, 19 Mar 2014 20:31:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 42691 at http://kunm.org To Save Her Husband's Life, A Woman Fights For Access To TB Drugs Stopping Microbes Not Missiles: U.S. Plans For Next Global Threat http://kunm.org/post/stopping-microbes-not-missiles-us-plans-next-global-threat Spot the next plague before it arrives. Predict the next swine flu outbreak before it makes headlines. Even detect a biological weapon before it's launched.<p>These are the goals of an ambitious initiative, launched Thursday, to build a worldwide surveillance system for infectious diseases.<p>Spearheaded by the U.S. government, the <a href="http://www.globalhealth.gov/global-health-topics/global-health-security/index.html">Global Health Security Agenda</a> brings together 26 countries, the World Health Organization and several other international group. Thu, 13 Feb 2014 22:52:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 41313 at http://kunm.org Stopping Microbes Not Missiles: U.S. Plans For Next Global Threat Cancer Cases Rising At An Alarming Rate Worldwide http://kunm.org/post/global-cancer-cases-rising-alarming-rate-worldwide As countries modernize around the world, they're increasingly being hit with one of the curses of wealth: cancer.<p>There are about 14 million new cancer cases globally each year, the World Health Organization <a href="http://www.iarc.fr/en/media-centre/pr/2014/pdfs/pr224_E.pdf">reported</a> Monday. Wed, 05 Feb 2014 01:00:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 40932 at http://kunm.org Cancer Cases Rising At An Alarming Rate Worldwide Access To Toilets And Books Improves Life For Kids Across The Globe http://kunm.org/post/access-toilets-and-books-improves-life-kids-across-globe The world is in the midst of a porcelain revolution.<p>Nearly 2 billion people have gained access to clean toilets, or at least a decent outhouse, since 1990, the nonprofit UNICEF <a href="http://www.unicef.org/sowc2014/numbers/">reports</a> Thursday.<p>That rise in sanitation <a href="http://www.who.int/topics/sanitation/en/">has led</a> to big health improvements, the agency says, because contaminated drinking water is still a major cause of disease and death for children.<p>But toilets aren't only the reason the world is becoming a better place for kids. Thu, 30 Jan 2014 17:29:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 40713 at http://kunm.org Access To Toilets And Books Improves Life For Kids Across The Globe Overweight People In Developing World Outnumber Those In Rich Countries http://kunm.org/post/overweight-people-developing-world-outnumber-those-rich-countries People are getting fatter around the world. Fri, 03 Jan 2014 13:15:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 39647 at http://kunm.org Overweight People In Developing World Outnumber Those In Rich Countries Why Ending Malaria May Be More About Backhoes Than Bed Nets http://kunm.org/post/why-ending-malaria-may-be-more-about-backhoes-bed-nets Wiping out malaria is a top goal for many leaders in global health.<p>Fewer people are dying now from the mosquito-borne disease than at any other time in history. "And there's a very, very strong belief now that malaria can be eliminated," says <a href="http://www.who.int/woman_child_accountability/ierg/members/Phumaphi/en/index.html">Joy Phumaphi</a>, who chairs the African Leaders Malaria Alliance.<p>But when you look at the overall numbers on malaria, eradication almost seems like a pipe dream.<p>In 2010, malaria was ranked as the seventh biggest killer in the developing world. Fri, 03 Jan 2014 08:24:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 39635 at http://kunm.org Why Ending Malaria May Be More About Backhoes Than Bed Nets Simple, Cheap Health Remedies Cut Child Mortality In Ethiopia http://kunm.org/post/simple-cheap-health-remedies-cut-child-mortality-ethiopia Poor countries are starting to realize something that richer ones sometimes forget: Basic, inexpensive measures can have dramatic impacts on the health of a country. Wed, 01 Jan 2014 21:02:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 39587 at http://kunm.org Simple, Cheap Health Remedies Cut Child Mortality In Ethiopia Rushing Toward Chaos: Covering The Aftermath Of Typhoon Haiyan http://kunm.org/post/rushing-toward-chaos-covering-aftermath-typhoon-haiyan It felt like a dream.<p>The Marines kept flying over us all night long. Their hulking C-130 cargo planes rattled the tarp we'd jerry-rigged above our heads. NPR photographer David Gilkey and I were lying in sleeping bags next to the runway of the destroyed Tacloban airport. We'd arrived a few hours earlier in the back of one of those military aircraft. Now we were just waiting for daybreak.<p>Typhoon Haiyan had ripped the airport apart, killed the soldiers based there and left it flooded with seawater. Sat, 28 Dec 2013 10:00:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 39437 at http://kunm.org Rushing Toward Chaos: Covering The Aftermath Of Typhoon Haiyan They Shot For Zero, But Couldn't Squash Polio In 2013 http://kunm.org/post/they-shot-zero-couldnt-squash-polio-2013 <em>As we near the end of 2013, NPR is taking a look at the numbers that tell the story of this year. Numbers that, if you really understand them, give insight into the world we're living in, right now. Over the next two weeks, you'll hear the stories behind numbers, ranging from zero to 1 trillion. </em><p>The lowest number of polio cases ever recorded in the world during one year was 223. And 2013 was on track for an even lower number.<p>But this was a year when polio pushed back. Hard. Sun, 15 Dec 2013 13:23:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 38943 at http://kunm.org They Shot For Zero, But Couldn't Squash Polio In 2013 Nelson Mandela, Inspiration To World, Dies At 95 http://kunm.org/post/nelson-mandela-inspiration-world-dies-95 Nelson Mandela, who was born in a country that viewed him as a second-class citizen, died Thursday as one of the most respected statesmen in the world. He was 95.<p>President Jacob Zuma announced the death in a televised speech.<p>From his childhood as a herd boy, Mandela went on to lead the African National Congress' struggle against the racially oppressive, apartheid regime of South Africa. For his efforts, he spent 27 years behind bars as a political prisoner. Thu, 05 Dec 2013 23:00:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 38543 at http://kunm.org Nelson Mandela, Inspiration To World, Dies At 95 A Chronic Problem In Disaster Zones: No Fuel http://kunm.org/post/chronic-problem-disaster-zones-no-fuel In the wake of any natural disaster, there are almost always shortages of fuel. Even in the United States, gas stations shut down during blackouts because there's no electricity to run their pumps.<p>It was no different in the Philippines, where practically no fuel was available after Typhoon Haiyan struck. Aid agencies said the lack of gasoline was a major impediment to relief efforts.<p>One small American nonprofit called the Fuel Relief Fund is trying to change that.<p>Immediately after Haiyan hit, all the gas stations in Tacloban were shut, along with everything else. Wed, 20 Nov 2013 21:41:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 37937 at http://kunm.org A Chronic Problem In Disaster Zones: No Fuel Catholics In Philippines Turn To Church To Cope With Typhoon http://kunm.org/post/catholics-philippines-turn-church-cope-typhoon Across the ravaged center of the Philippines on Sunday, people flocked to Mass, often in churches that had been severely damaged or destroyed by Typhoon Haiyan.<p>In many villages in Leyte province, the only structures that survived the storm were churches. Spires and statues of angels look out over fields of smashed houses and twisted typhoon debris.<p>In Tacloban, the typhoon ripped the roof off the once-stately Santo Nino Catholic Church. There's still mud in among the pews, and one of the large stained-glass windows hangs precariously from its frame above the congregation. Mon, 18 Nov 2013 09:00:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 37810 at http://kunm.org Catholics In Philippines Turn To Church To Cope With Typhoon Photos: A Crippled Hospital Aids Desperate Survivors http://kunm.org/post/photos-crippled-hospital-aids-desperate-survivors In the typhoon-ravaged heart of the Philippines, many hospitals were badly damaged or destroyed by the storm. NPR photojournalist David Gilkey and reporter Jason Beaubien visited one battered hospital that continues to serve patients.<p>More than a week after the storm, the staff at Divine Word Hospital are simultaneously trying to patch up the hospital and take care of patients.<p>In the courtyard of the hospital, men fight thick, black mud that was left behind by the storm surge. Typhoon Haiyan ripped the roof off this solid, four-story hospital and threw it down in the courtyard. Sat, 16 Nov 2013 19:12:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 37770 at http://kunm.org Photos: A Crippled Hospital Aids Desperate Survivors U.S. Military Helps Transport Typhoon Survivors http://kunm.org/post/us-military-helps-transport-typhoon-survivors Transcript <p>STEVE INSKEEP, HOST: <p>Stories of survival are emerging from the Philippines after the devastation brought by Typhoon Haiyan. Twenty-three-year-old Marcelo Maloon(ph) was studying nursing in Tacloban, the city hardest hit by the storm. And on the day of the typhoon, Maloon took shelter in a hotel with friends.<p>RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST: <p>From a third floor window, Maloon filmed videos he then posted to his Instagram account, showing debris flying through the air and cars being swept through the flooded street below. Thu, 14 Nov 2013 10:47:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 37641 at http://kunm.org Do For-Profit Schools Give Poor Kenyans A Real Choice? http://kunm.org/post/do-profit-schools-give-poor-kenyans-real-choice <a href="http://www.bridgeinternationalacademies.com/">Bridge International Academies</a> has set up more than 200 schools in Kenya over the past four years, and plans to open 50 more in January.<p>Using a school-in-a-box model, Bridge's founders say it gives primary schoolkids a quality education for roughly $5 a month.<p>"We believe that we can be educating at least 10 million pupils around the world that come from families who live on less than $2 a day," says Bridge co-founder Jay Kimmelman. "We believe that we can give them an education ... Tue, 12 Nov 2013 19:22:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 37558 at http://kunm.org Do For-Profit Schools Give Poor Kenyans A Real Choice? Aid Groups Struggle To Reach Survivors Of Typhoon Haiyan http://kunm.org/post/aid-groups-struggle-reach-survivors-typhoon-haiyan Aid agencies are scrambling to try to get water and food to people in the Philippines who've been left homeless or injured by Typhoon Haiyan.<p>But reaching some of the areas ravaged by the intense storm is proving difficult. Mon, 11 Nov 2013 23:00:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 37521 at http://kunm.org Aid Groups Struggle To Reach Survivors Of Typhoon Haiyan Polio In The Middle East And Africa Could Threaten Europe http://kunm.org/post/polio-middle-east-and-africa-could-threaten-europe Polio outbreaks in the Middle East and Africa could spread to Europe if precautions aren't taken, researchers say.<p>The recent discovery of the poliovirus in <a href="http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2013/10/22/238693328/first-polio-cases-since-1999-suspected-in-syria">Syria</a>, Somalia and Israel should be a wake-up call for European health officials, according to epidemiologist <a href="http://www.uni-tuebingen.de/modeling/Mod_Eichner_Intro_en.html">Martin Eichner</a> at the University of Tuebingen in Germany.<p>"There are more and more countries where polio is being transmitted, and there Fri, 08 Nov 2013 17:34:00 +0000 Jason Beaubien 37418 at http://kunm.org Polio In The Middle East And Africa Could Threaten Europe