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Global food crisis will cause “millions of deaths”, warns humanitarian organization

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The global food crisis caused by Russia’s war in Ukraine is going to cause “millions dead” by exposing the most vulnerable population to infectious diseases, which can lead to a health catastrophe, warned the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.

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A naval blockade of Black Sea ports has slowed shipments from Ukraine, the world’s fourth largest exporter of wheat and corn, fueling fears of shortages and hunger in poor countries.

The repercussions of the lack of food mean that many people will die from hunger but also from the debilitating effects of malnutrition, he said. peter sandsExecutive Director of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.

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I think the next health crisis has already begun. This is not about a new pathogen but about the fact that malnourished people are more vulnerable to existing diseases” he explained on the sidelines of the G20 Health Ministers meeting in the city of Yogyakarta, Indonesia.

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I believe that the combined impact of infectious diseases, lack of food and the energy crisis can cause millions of deaths“, he claimed.

Governments should try to reduce the impact of the food crisis by prioritizing primary care and care in villages and communities, which will be the most vulnerable, said the former banker who now heads a $4 billion humanitarian fund.

This means giving priority to primary care, that is, care provided in the towns, in the communities. Hospitals are important, but when facing these kinds of challenges, the most important thing is primary care”, he added.

Disaster” for tuberculosis

The fight to contain the spread of the coronavirus has diverted resources to fight tuberculosis, which in 2020 killed 1.5 million people, according to data from the World Health Organization (WHO). “It was a disaster for tuberculosisSands said.

For this health expert, solving the food crisis is now key to helping treat tuberculosis, the second deadliest infectious disease in the world.

Western countries and Ukraine accuse Russia of trying to pressure them by blocking grain exports amid growing fears of global famine.

Moscow responded by stating that Western sanctions are responsible for the shortcomings affecting the Middle East and Africa.

Germany hosts this Friday an international conference on the food crisis in which the head of US diplomacy, Antony Blinken, will participate.

For Sands, tuberculosis is “the pandemic of the poor and that is why it has not attracted the same amount of investment for research and development.”

This is a tragedy because it is a disease that we know how to avoid, how to cure and how to eliminate”, he concluded.

Source: Gestion

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