Wednesday 23 May 2012

MC and Global Health--1

World Health Assembly--Global Statistics

This week we are at the 65th World Health Assembly (WHA), the large annual event organized by the World Health Organization (WHO). It meets here in Geneva at the United Nations. This gathering brings together thousands of health practitioner, advocates, researchers, ministries of health etc. in order to discuss, debate, plan,  etc. on a range of health issues around the world, from river blindness, to infant mortality, to health equity and rights, to the Millennium  Development Goals (MDGs). It is an intense, packed time, with multiple options beckoning you for your attention and attendance at any given time.
Global health (GH) involvement is relevant for member care (MC) in at least important ways:
1. GH is a major concern of many people and organizations in mission/aid.
2. GH promotes mutual learning and can provide many new resources to support MC.
3. GH can open doors for additional roles and contributions as MC workers.
To the above three items we would add that connecting with global issues in general, such as those in GH, is part of our responsibility as Christ-followers to help fellow-humans. It is also part of our responsibility as "citizens of heaven" (Phil. 3:20) who also understand that we are global citizens during our sojourn on earth. So from a Christian perspective, both desire and duty impel us to do all that we can to promote health and healing in this world. Yet ultimately we look to Christ as the ultimate Healer of humanity's woes--the One who will "transform the body of our humble state into conformity with the body of His glory" (Phil. 3:21). 
We begin these entries with three links to helpful statistics on global health. 
World Health Statistics 2012
WHO’s annual compilation of health-related data for its 194 Member States, and includes a summary of the progress made towards achieving the health-related Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and associated targets.This year, it also includes highlight summaries on the topics of noncommunicable diseases, universal health coverage and civil registration coverage. Progress on the health-related Millennium Development Goals (MDGs)
Summary Brochure for World Health Statistics
Full Report: World Health Statistics
Table of Contents
Part I. Health-related Millennium Development Goals
Summary of status and trends
Regional and country charts
Part II. Highlighted topics
Noncommunicable diseases: a major health challenge of the 21st century
Health expenditures and universal coverage
Civil registration and vital statistics systems
Part III. Global health indicators
1. Life expectancy and mortality
2. Cause-specific mortality and morbidity
3. Selected infectious diseases
4. Health service coverage
5. Risk factors
6. Health workforce, infrastructure and essential medicines
7. Health expenditure
8. Health inequities
9. Demographic and socioeconomic statistics
10. Health information systems and data availability
Reflection and Discussion
**Describe a few applications for MC based on the items/commentary above.

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