💊 Pandemic accord negotiations begin; World Bank finances India’s health sector initiatives; AI advances breast cancer treatment research
Four day weeks here to stay; Australia goes the mRNA way; Keeping plant pathogens at bay
Hello and welcome back to this bright and sunny March day which comes with good tidings as countries finally begin negotiations on the draft of a pandemic accord. The World Health Assembly’s timetable indicates that these negotiations will go on over the next year.
Elsewhere, the World Bank is supporting the Government of India in developing its health sector to fight future pandemics. The financing deal includes two $500 million loans each for India’s national health infrastructure mission as well as health service delivery in 7 Indian states.
Australia is investing $10 million in upskilling its mRNA vaccine and therapeutic manufacturing workforce as the Victoria government and Monash University join hands to set up the country’s first such training centre. The workforce across Asia-Pacific also stands to benefit.
Meanwhile, the International AIDS Vaccine Initiative (IAVI) and the US’s Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) are coming together to advance the former’s single-dose vaccine candidates for the Marburg virus and Sudan ebolavirus – filoviruses that continue to ravage Central and West Africa.
And finally, how can we not bring up bird flu? Indonesia says it has not seen any human-to-human transmission, but surveillance, scientific investigation, and prevention efforts are in full swing.
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