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Pharmaceutical sector calls on IEA to prevent smuggling of medicines into country



(Last Updated On: June 4, 2022)

Afghanistan’s Medicine Importers Union on Saturday urged the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA) to prevent pharmaceutical drugs from being smuggled into the country and assured the people that there would be enough medicine to cover the domestic market.

Manufacturers meanwhile said there are 55 pharmaceutical factories operating in the country, and collectively they manufacture 360 types of medicines.

Kamaluddin Kakar, head of Afghanistan Medicine Manufacturers Association, said that $250 million has been invested in the pharmaceutical sector in the country and that about 5,000 people are employed in the factories.

“We assure our people that there will be no shortage of medicines in the markets, but it is necessary that the Islamic Emirate prevent the entry of smuggled drugs into the markets,” said Gul Halim Halim, head of the Medicine Importers Union.

Some of these factories were however forced to close their doors in recent months due to a shortage of raw ingredients.

In addition to this, the country’s health sector has been hit hard after foreign funding dried up after the collapse of the former government.


Local charity helps 200 children with cleft palates and cleft lips



(Last Updated On: April 2, 2023)

Two hundred children with cleft palates and cleft lips are being operated on free of charge on the occasion of the holy month of Ramazan by a charity organization in Kunduz province.

“Last year, we operated on 210 patients who were suffering from cleft palates and cleft lips, all of whom were cured,” said Allah Noor, head of Saadat Hospital in Kunduz.

According to provincial public health officials, patients from other provinces also come to this center for treatment.

“We have a plan to treat 200 patients with cleft palates and cleft lips; for now this service is at the level of Kunduz zone and even people from Maymana and Sheberghan-Mazar-e-Sharif are coming to this province for the surgery,” said Najibullah Sahil, head of Kunduz Public Health.

The families of these children meanwhile welcomed the move and said they had been able to afford treatment.

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45% of ARI cases in Afghanistan involve children under 5: WHO



(Last Updated On: April 1, 2023)

The World Health Organization (WHO) said in a report released Thursday that 45.1 percent of cases of acute respiratory infections in Afghanistan involve children.

Since October 2022, of the total 4,353,661 ARI cases reported, representing 13.3 percent of the total population of Afghanistan, 45.1 percent have afflicted children under five years of age, the report said.

In addition, ARI cases have increased since 2022 compared to the average of the previous three years.

The report also said that in the last month of February, over 828,000 ARI cases were newly reported.

Afghanistan experienced one of the coldest winters this year in decades.

WHO’s report said that following emergencies, an estimated 17 percent of impacted adults experience mild to moderate psychological disorders, including depression, anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder.

Decades of conflict and instability have left many Afghans vulnerable to mental health problems, which are risk factors for drug abuse, the report said.

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Chile detects first case of bird flu in a human



(Last Updated On: March 30, 2023)

Chile detected the first case of bird flue in a human, the country’s health ministry reported on Wednesday.

The case was detected in a 53-year-old man who presented severe influenza symptoms, according to a statement issued by the ministry, but they noted the patient was in stable condition.

The government is also investigating the source of contagion as well as others who were in contact with the patient.

Chile has reported cases of the H5N1 bird flu since late last year in wild animals.

Recent cases in industrial farms caused the government to halt poultry exports. Industrial cases have also been detected in Argentina, but Brazil, the world’s largest exporter of poultry, remains free of the contagion.

Chilean health authorities noted the virus can be transmitted from birds or marine mammals to humans, but there is no known human-to-human transmission.

Earlier this year, Ecuador confirmed its first case of human transmission of bid flu in a 9-year-old girl. Global health officials have said risk of transmission between humans is low, but vaccine makers have been preparing bird flu shots for humans “just in case.”

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