• No preview · Article · Mar 2012 · The Lancet
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    ABSTRACT: Objective On 20 July 2011, for the first time since 1991–1992, the United Nations declared famine in parts of Somalia. Here, we report the methods, data and analysis that underpinned this declaration along with the review of trends in mortality and malnutrition.Methods During July 2011, 16 population-based nutrition and mortality surveys were conducted in southern Somalia. Data on food access, collected through seasonal assessments and monthly monitoring, were analyzed using Household Economy methods.ResultsIn 11 of 16 survey locations, the prevalence of Global Acute Malnutrition exceeded the Integrated Food Security Phase Classification threshold for Phase 5 (Famine) of 30%. In five areas, Crude Death Rates exceeded the Integrated Food Security Phase Classification Phase 5 (Famine) threshold of 2/10,000/day. In agro-pastoral zones of the south, where access was most limited, more than 20% of households faced extreme food shortages.CommentSurvey findings and analysis confirm that a famine occurred in parts of southern Somalia during 2011 and raise the question of why strong early warning analysis did not trigger an earlier, better funded and more effective, response.
    Full-text · Article · Dec 2012 · Global Food Security
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    ABSTRACT: In 2007, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) presented a large amount of evidence about global warming and the impact of human activities on global climate change. The Lancet Commission have identified a number of ways in which climate change can influence human health: lack of food and safe drinking water, poor sanitation, population migration, changing disease patterns and morbidity, more frequent extreme weather events, and lack of shelter. Pregnant women, the developing fetus, and young children are considered the most vulnerable members of our species and are already marginalized in many countries. Therefore, they may have increased sensitivity to the effects of climate change. Published literature in the fields of climate change, human health, tropical diseases, and direct heat exposure were assessed through the regular search engines. This article demonstrates that climate change will increase the risk of infant and maternal mortality, birth complications, and poorer reproductive health, especially in tropical, developing countries. Thus, climate change will have a substantial impact on the health and survival of the next generation among already challenged populations. There is limited knowledge regarding which regions will be most heavily affected. Research efforts are therefore required to identify the most vulnerable populations, fill knowledge gaps, and coordinate efforts to reduce negative health consequences. The effects of malnutrition, infectious diseases, environmental problems, and direct heat exposure on maternal health outcomes will lead to severe health risks for mothers and children. Increased focus on antenatal care is recommended to prevent worsening maternal health and perinatal mortality and morbidity. Interventions to reduce the negative health impacts caused by climate change are also crucial. Every effort should be made to develop and maintain good antenatal care during extreme life conditions as a result of climate change.
    Full-text · Article · Mar 2013 · Global Health Action
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