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Goodbye smallpox vaccination, hello monkeypox

Goodbye smallpox vaccination, hello monkeypox | Global education = global understanding | Scoop.it

In 8 May 1980, the World Health Organisation declared that “the world and its peoples are free from smallpox.” Through decades of intense vaccination, this once fatal disease had been wiped out. It was a singular victory and having won it, countries around the world discontinued the vaccination programmes. After all, why protect against a disease that no longer exists, except in a few isolated stocks?

 

Unfortunately, this is not a rhetorical question. The smallpox vaccine did more than protect against smallpox. It also reduced the risk of contracting a related illness called monkeypox, which produces the same combination of scabby bumps and fever. It’s milder than smallpox but it’s still a serious affliction. In Africa, where monkeypox originates from, it kills anywhere from 1-10% of those who are infected. And more and more people are becoming infected.

 

Anne Rimoin from the University of California, Los Angeles compared data on the virus in the Democratic Republic of Congo over the last three decades. She found that, during those years, monkeypox has become 20 times more common in humans. In one particular area, 72 people out of every million were infected each year between 1981 and 1986. Between 2005 and 2007, that figure rose to 1442 per million. Rimoin thinks that we eased up the pressure on smallpox vaccination too soon. Between 1981 and 1985, only 404 cases turned up in all of Africa, and simulations predicted that the disease was unlikely to spread too far in a human population before dying out. This was no public health threat. In 1986, even the monitoring programme was stopped. In 2005 however, Rimoin’s group, together with the DRC Ministry of Health and the World Health Organization set up a new round of monkeypox surveillance and they spent two years collecting data. Their research showed that the disease is gaining ground.

 

Rimoin found that monkeypox was disproportionately affecting children and almost all of those who fell sick were born after 1980, when the smallpox vaccination programme was halted in the DRC. The vaccine wasn’t a perfect defence against monkeypox but it was still around 85% effective. Among people who were born during the vaccination era, those who were immunised were 5 times less likely to develop monkeypox than their protected peers. And this protection is clearly long-lasting; even 25 years on, they could still ward off the related virus.

 

These figures are probably underestimates too. The region’s inconsistent healthcare isn’t exactly conducive to accurate disease monitoring and Rimoin says that her team had word of many more cases, but couldn’t always check them out because of their remote location.

 

Monkeypox is spread by animals including squirrels and, fairly obviously, monkeys. As humans encroach upon the DRC’s tropical rainforests, the risk of being exposed to an infected carrier grows. Indeed, Rimoin found that the odds of contracting monkeypox were higher for people living near forested areas, and for men. As civil strife continues to affect the DRC, locals are being forced to rely more on hunting to get enough food and that brings men in close contact with furry viral reservoirs.

 

It’s an emerging threat, but Rimoin isn’t calling for smallpox vaccination to resume. Doing so would be logistically difficult in an area where even collecting data can be fraught. It might be better to take a more targeted approach, vaccinating only health workers who treat infected patients, and people who come into frequent contact with animal carriers. It may also be worth educating local people about the dangers of handling carrier species and the benefits of isolating people who show the very obvious symptoms, until they can be treated.

 

But most importantly, Rimoin wants active surveillance in regions where the virus circulates, especially since there are still so many unknowns about the virus. We need to better understand how it moves from human to human (and from animal to human), how often it’s fatal, or what the complications are.

 

It’s a good opportunity to take action now, at a time when the monkeypox is still confined to specific areas. Things might not stay that way. In 2003, there was a bizarre outbreak in the United States, as rodents from Ghana brought the disease to American prairie dogs, who handed it over to humans. All sorts of rodents the world over might become reservoirs for the disease and Rimoin writes, “If monkeypox were to become established in a wildlife reservoir outside Africa, the public health setback would be difficult to reverse.”


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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Carpathian Melodies

Andrei Pidkivka on folk flutes from the Carpathian Mountains in Ukraine. Solomiya Gorokhivska on violin.
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Why are we building new walls to divide us?

Why are we building new walls to divide us? | Global education = global understanding | Scoop.it
We chart the routes of, and reasons for, the barriers which are once again dividing populations
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Why Ukraine Matters

Why Ukraine Matters | Global education = global understanding | Scoop.it
Keep an eye on how the events unfold in Ukraine, because it will be a bellwether in the years to come.
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What A Table Full Of Foreigners Taught Me About Thanksgiving

What A Table Full Of Foreigners Taught Me About Thanksgiving | Global education = global understanding | Scoop.it
Ask your friends who live outside the U.S. what they think about Thanksgiving, and you may be shocked by the answers you get.
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Why China’s middle class supports the Communist Party

Why China’s middle class supports the Communist Party | Global education = global understanding | Scoop.it
Those in the West commonly believe that economic growth and a burgeoning middle class in China will lead to democratic reform.
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12 traditional dances from around the world

12 traditional dances from around the world | Global education = global understanding | Scoop.it
Whether you're synchronized in Mongolia or twirling in Turkey, Gloria Estefan's words still ring true: The rhythm is gonna get you
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Arlis Groves's curator insight, October 9, 2013 12:54 AM

I love traveling.  Learning about people around the world makes me feel more connected to my global community.  These photographs are virtual mini-tour.  Enjoy.

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Nairobi Westgate Mall Terror Attack, And The Folly Of 'Otherness' - What Al-Shabaab Revealed About Us

Nairobi Westgate Mall Terror Attack, And The Folly Of 'Otherness'  - What Al-Shabaab Revealed About Us | Global education = global understanding | Scoop.it
AROUND noon on Saturday September 21, a group of terrorists believed to number 10 to 18 stormed the Westgate Mall in western Nairobi. By the third day, 69 had been killed during the attack, or died...
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Muslim beauty pageant challenges Miss World contest

Muslim beauty pageant challenges Miss World contest | Global education = global understanding | Scoop.it

"Muslim women from six countries defy western beauty ideals, emphasize spirituality.  Organizers of the event said they wanted to show Muslim women there is an alternative to the idea of beauty put forward by the British-run Miss World pageant. They also stress that opposition to the pageant can be expressed non-violently." 


Via Seth Dixon
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Rawr_adventuretime's comment, October 3, 2013 1:27 PM
This is social because the gender relations is women defying ideas of beauty and expressing beauty through spirit instead of body and looks c:
Mrs. B's curator insight, October 5, 2013 9:34 AM

What do you think?

Hannah Hitchcock's curator insight, December 13, 2013 1:54 PM

This article is a really good example on how beauty is a cultural perception. American pleople have a skewed idea of beauty, those shown above not being in that category. In other countries, these women might be extreamly beautiful, but the American perception doesn't believe the same things.  

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9 questions about Syria you were too embarrassed to ask

9 questions about Syria you were too embarrassed to ask | Global education = global understanding | Scoop.it
Yes, the first question is
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The Little Germans: Alienation Still Divides East from West - SPIEGEL ONLINE

The Little Germans: Alienation Still Divides East from West - SPIEGEL ONLINE | Global education = global understanding | Scoop.it
Almost 25 years after the Berlin Wall fell, a profound sense of otherness endures between residents on both sides of the former divide. Rather than trying to change or ignore this, both sides should simply accept it.
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The World's 25 Busiest Airports

The World's 25 Busiest Airports | Global education = global understanding | Scoop.it
More than 1.4 billion airline passengers departed, landed, or connected through these massive facilities in 2012. Viewing them from above gives a sense of their gargantuan scale and global significance.
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Slavery's last stand - CNN.com

Slavery's last stand - CNN.com | Global education = global understanding | Scoop.it
Mauritania's endless sea of sand dunes hides an open secret: An estimated 10% to 20% of the population lives in slavery. But as one woman's journey shows, the first step toward freedom is realizing you're enslaved.
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9 questions about Ukraine you were too embarrassed to ask

9 questions about Ukraine you were too embarrassed to ask | Global education = global understanding | Scoop.it
Yes, the first question is "What is Ukraine?"
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USSR established — History.com This Day in History — 12/30/1922

USSR established — History.com This Day in History — 12/30/1922 | Global education = global understanding | Scoop.it
Discover what happened today in history. Read about major past events that happened today including special entries on crime, entertainment, and more.
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Missing Girls...

"In India, China and many other parts of the world today, girls are killed, aborted and abandoned simply because they are girls. The United Nations estimates as many as 200 million girls are missing in the world today because of this so-called 'gendercide' or femicide."


Via Seth Dixon
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Jess Deady's curator insight, May 4, 2014 9:10 PM

Females might be the underdogs of men forever. Hopefully this is not the case but it just seems like it will be sometimes, doesn't it? Women have had issues with rights and equality from the beginning of time. Things need to change on a global scale for horrible situations like this to stop occurring so frequently.

Sreya Ayinala's curator insight, December 2, 2014 9:52 PM

Unit 3 Cultural Processes and Patterns

Amanda Morgan's curator insight, December 15, 2014 3:45 PM

This femicide is extremely disappointing.  Genocide is expected in third world, war torn countries.  The fact that it's 2014 and female babies are murdered for being girls, and parents are scared for their  children's lives, show how much power the government has over the people's lives. It is sad to think the government has the power to dictate how many children families can have and what gender.  On the flip side, these are countries that are extremely overpopulated.  The one child policy in China is what China is currently using (along with this femicide) as population control.  This is an important issue because there needs to be some sort of population control, but to what extent? This is taking away someone's basic human right - to procreate. Parents do not have control over what gender they produce and if they produce a female, their child may be taken and murdered from them. The state takes away what you created, your offspring and there is nothing they can do about it. 

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Battle for Ukraine

Battle for Ukraine | Global education = global understanding | Scoop.it
THUGS and thieves always prefer to act in the early hours of the morning. So did Viktor Yanukovych, Ukraine’s president.Less than 24 hours after he ruined the...
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Modern Slavery

Modern Slavery | Global education = global understanding | Scoop.it

"I recently saw this map in a Washington Post article about modern day slavery and was immediately was struck by the spatial extent and amount of slaves in today’s global economy.  As stated in that article, “This is not some softened, by-modern-standards definition of slavery. These 30 million people are living as forced laborers, forced prostitutes, child soldiers, child brides in forced marriages and, in all ways that matter, as pieces of property, chattel in the servitude of absolute ownership.”  This map shows some important spatial patterns that seem to correlate to economic and cultural factors."


Via Seth Dixon
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Jessica Rieman's curator insight, March 19, 2014 5:04 PM

MOdern Slavery is a huge problem throughtout the world and especially in Africa and surrounding sister countries. For example, in Africa this map shows us that the slave rate is more than .75 this indicates that there is a small percentage of the country that is not enslaved in some way. This is outrageous for the modern society to think of in todays world especially because as Americans we think of the slave trade and slavery being something that happened many years ago and then slavery was abloished and now nothing bad happens anymore well we couldn't be more WRONG! AMericans are mostly ingornat to the fact that although slavery is not announced in surronding counintents and countries does not mean that it doesn't exist. Another example of this is the Somali blood diamonds and how the children become toy-soldiers and are turned into rebels because if they dont they will be killed so this is the type of society where it is kill or me killed. These CHILDREN are trained to kill anyone and everyone who gets in their way; taken away from their families at a young age and then brainwashed into using their ignorance as bliss.

Logan Haller's curator insight, May 25, 2015 9:51 PM

This article has to do with unit 6 because it deals with development.This article explains how 30 million people work as forced labors, forced child soldiers,  forced brides and many other forced things. The map illustrates spatial patterns on economic and cultural factors on where the people enslaved are. The map shows that India is 1.1% enslaved.People say that fair trade and not free trade will lead to sustainable economic growth and lower social injustice. Two questions asked by the article is what realistically can we do to lessen slavery in the world today, and how our our own spending habits part of the system. The article also includes a video on some of the ways the slaves are treated poorly .

8A JonathanS's curator insight, February 9, 7:19 AM

https://geographyeducation.org/courses/regional-geography-geog-400/modern-slavery/

 

This article describes when people in Africa are victims of modern day slavery. It tells us how people are forced into working long long hours a day with no breaks, barely any food or water and a very unsafe working environment. Some examples of what these poor people are forced into working as are laborers, prostitutes, child soldiers, child brides. Many people are also forced into marriages and illegal mining and smuggling of goods across borders . There are currently about 30 million modern day slaves all over the world. Their mostly in large parts of Africa and most of India. There's also some in Europe and in the U.S. One of the most unsafe working environment these slaves are forced into working in are the illegal mining projects. Their forced to work long hours in a mine that could collapse any second with nothing but a cheap flashlight tied to their head and a shovel or spade. 

 

I think this article connects to what were working on in class about modern slavery and Africa. I think this is very sad because I think everybody has the right to do what they feel like and deserve their freedom just like most people. This is extremely unfair and I think that more people should try and do something about it. Of course there are already loads of people trying to prevent this issue from spreading and I think it's a very kind and respectful thing to do. I did learn a lot from this article tho and the TED talk. One thing I learned was that this problem mostly appears in Africa. I honestly though that Asia and more parts of South America would have this issue as well. So yes, I learned quite a lot from this and I think that it was a good article with lots of useful information and I got a lot of emotional feelings from seeing the video.

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The 33 Most Beautiful Abandoned Places In The World - Imgur

Imgur is home to the web's most popular image content, curated in real time by a dedicated community through commenting, voting and sharing.
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How Much Is That Second Baby Worth In Yuan?

How Much Is That Second Baby Worth In Yuan? | Global education = global understanding | Scoop.it
Nineteen Chinese provincial governments collected $2.7 billion in baby fines last year.
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North Korea Then And Now: In The Hermit Kingdom, 18 Years After My Parents

North Korea Then And Now: In The Hermit Kingdom, 18 Years After My Parents | Global education = global understanding | Scoop.it
Two decades after my mom and dad went to the world's most reclusive nation, I set off on a similar journey, and re-created their photos.
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The shadow of Ypres

The shadow of Ypres | Global education = global understanding | Scoop.it
“CLEARLY,” wrote an exasperated Winston Churchill in the summer of 1944, “I cannot make head against the parsons and the warriors at the same time.” Through...
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The one map that shows why Syria is so complicated

The one map that shows why Syria is so complicated | Global education = global understanding | Scoop.it
A color-coded map of the country's religious and ethnic groups helps explain why the fighting is so bad.
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The Global Economy: Minutes Of Minimum-Wage Work To Buy A Big Mac

The Global Economy: Minutes Of Minimum-Wage Work To Buy A Big Mac | Global education = global understanding | Scoop.it
Just 18 minutes of minimum-wage work in Australia earns you a Big Mac, but in Afghanistan and India it takes around 6 hours.
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Germany Fights Population Drop

Germany Fights Population Drop | Global education = global understanding | Scoop.it
As German towns work to hide the emptiness, demographers say a similar fate awaits other European countries, with frightening implications for the economy.
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Population Density

Population Density | Global education = global understanding | Scoop.it

"[This map's] an unabashedly generalized interactive population density map inspired/stolen from a map by William Bunge entitled Islands of Mankind that I came across on John Krygier‘s blog. I thought Bunge’s map was a novel way to look at population density, and I’ve tried to stay close to the spirit of the original."


Via Seth Dixon
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Katelyn Sesny's curator insight, October 31, 2014 12:22 PM

While most articles talk about population growth, this article provides factual and visual evidence to show population density. -UNIT 2

michelle sutherland's curator insight, January 28, 2015 8:28 PM

love the map

Daniel Lindahl's curator insight, March 21, 2015 11:50 PM

This is an interactive map that shows which parts of the world are most densely populated. It becomes very apparent to the viewer that the world is not evenly distributed at all. Places like China and India have a far higher population density than places like Russia.