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Distribution of SMS Printers in Cameroon to Reduce Delays in HIV Testing for Newborns

Afrique IT news reports that [fr] a new type of device (SMS printer) is being installed in several HIV testing facilities in Cameroon thanks to the Clinton Foundation and the telecommunication company  MTN :    

La Fondation Clinton et l’opérateur de télécommunication MTN ont établi un partenariat pour lutter contre le diagnostic tardif de l’infection au VIH chez les nouveaux nés. Comprenant une mini-imprinante, ce dispositif mobile sera installé dans 682 centres de prélèvements à travers le pays. Pour sa part la MTN devrait mettre son réseau, ainsi que ses équipements à disposition, pour un meilleur déploiement du service dans les régions trop éloignées qui semblent être les plus touchées. Les nouveau-nés pourront subir des tests pour le VIH dans divers hôpitaux avec l’impression immédiate des résultats en envoyant des tests via la technologie SMS à deux laboratoires spécialisés du pays.

The Clinton Foundation and the telecommunications operator MTN have partnered to fight against the late diagnosis of HIV testing in newborns.  This new mobile device will include a pocket-size printer and will be distributed in 682 testing centers across the country. For its part,  MTN will share its cell network and its facilities for better service deployment in remote areas that have the most urgent needs. Newborns will be tested for HIV in various hospitals, the results of tests will be printed via SMS technology in two of the advanced laboratories in the country to allow the preparation of the treatment.

If You Want to Sleep as a Baby, You Should Read This!


Image by peasap on flickr (CC BY 2.0).

Psychologist Johanna Perez Vásquez studies dream interpretation since 2001 and runs the blog in Spanish El sueño significado (Dream meant) to help her readers to learn to interpretate their own dreams. On this occasiion, she posts a series of tips for a more effective sleep, resulting in a better and more invigorating rest for next day activities:

A la voz de refranes como “el tiempo es oro” o “al que madruga Dios lo ayuda” el sueño ha perdido, paulatinamente, importancia al tiempo que se elogia a quienes –con ayudas químicas o sin ellas− duermen poco y trabajan mucho. Estilos de vida en los que el desgaste físico y mental no es seguido por fases de recuperación apropiadas no sólo entorpecen el aprendizaje de la interpretación de sueños sino que deterioran la salud, por eso las recomendaciones que siguen son útiles para dormir mejor y para conocerte más a través de tus sueños.

From sayings such as “time is money” or “the early bird catches the worm”, sleeping has gradually lost importance while people who sleep few hours –with chemical help or not− and work a lot tend to be prasied. Life styles where physical and mental exhaustion are not followed by proper recovery phases not only make harder to learn how to interpretate dreams but also damage health, that's why these recommendations are useful for a better sleep and to get to know yourself through your dreams.

Her recommendations are useful for those who want to learn dream interpretation and for every person who searches a better rest at night. According to her, the best thing to do before getting to bed is to have a light dinner, avoid exhausting night activities, a warm bath and a clean bed.

To read more tips about rest and dreams, follow Johanna on her blog and on Twitter.

This post was part of the ninth #LunesDeBlogsGV (Monday of blogs on GV) on June 30, 2014.

Budget Cuts Leave Barbados’ Health System Gasping for Air

Who in their right mind believed that a 35 million dollar cut to the health budget 2013 would not have adversely affected healthcare delivery in Barbados?

Barbados Underground fears that the primary medical facility in the country, the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, is on its death bed.

Mapping the 567 Ebola Cases in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone

Ebola Hemorrhagic Fever Outbreak in Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone as of June 18 2014 via CDC - Public Domain

Ebola Hemorrhagic Fever Outbreak in Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone as of June 18 2014 via CDC – Public Domain

On June 16, 49 new Ebola cases, 12 of them deadly, were reported by the WHO. Bart Janssens, director of operations of The international NGO Doctors without Borders (Medecins Sans Frontieres, or MSF)) released a statement saying that:  

The epidemic is out of control, with the appearance of new sites in Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia, there is a real risk of it spreading to other areas. Ebola is no longer a public health issue limited to Guinea: it is affecting the whole of West Africa.  

Since the onset of the outbreak in February 2014, 567 cases have been reported. 398 suspect and confirmed cases were suspected and confirmed in Guinea, 97 in Sierra Leone and 33 in Liberia. There is no specific treatment for the virus with a typical high death rate.

The Impact of Climate Change on the Rural Population of Benin

Alain TOSSOUNON of Benin posted on the West African Network of Journalists for water and sanitation (WASH) blog  a summary of the report on the evaluation of post disaster needs in Benin after the recent major floods. The disaster caused the death of nearly fifty people and caused damage estimated at 78.3 billion FCFA (about 160 million USD) [fr]: 

Today, anytimes the rain starts to fall, I'm geeting scared and anxious ” says Elizabeth Kpossou, a resident of the village. This feeling is shared  by her neighbor and friend, Alice Codjo. However, a few years ago, periodic floods were part of the lives of these peaceful communities. And far from being a plague, they had found an opportunity with the fertile soil after the withdrawal of water from the floods. Now, those days are gone.  ”Everything changed” says the village chief, Samuel Boton. “Now, floods are more devastating” [..] Indeed, like in this village of Adjohoun with its 56 455 inhabitants, the entire country has been hit hard by the disaster. Across the country, the toll was heavy in human loss and material damages. There were 46 deaths and more than half of the municipalities were affected (55 municipalities affected of the 77 in the Benin). 

The Maya Nut, a Nature Giant

In the Guatemalan department of Petén, a group of local women market natural products prepared with Maya nut, well known as natural medicine. The president of the producer association, Benedicta Galicia Ramírez, notes they “pick up the seed and then dry it, toast and grind it to make fluor”, and that the Maya nut enhances children growth, with food values higher than maize, beans, cassava and plantain.

This species grows in many American countries, from Mexico to Peru, and is very appreciated for its medicinal and nutritious attributes:

Video: Here we introduce the project “Selva Viva”, by a group of women who produce food items from the Maya nut tree.

Here, the consumption of the Maya nut seed gets promoted.

Cameroonian Inventor Introduces First Locally-Made Tablet to Monitor Heart Diseases

Arthur Zang at the rolex awards via his Facebook page.

Arthur Zang at the rolex awards via his Facebook page.

Arthur Zang is a Cameroonian inventor specialized in IT and healthcare. His team created Cardiopad, a device that contains an electrocardiograph, a radioscope and a digital monitor. This tablet is connected through a regular mobile phone SIM card that is able to transmit an electrocardiogram from any point of the country to specialized centers where cardiologists can diagnose patients and remotely provide medical prescription. Arthur Zang was interviewed by Beaugas-Orain Djoyum on after he won one of the prestigious 2014 “Rolex Awards for enterprise competition” to explain his vision for the health care industry and innovation in Africa: 

Dans notre stratégie de déploiement, nous travaillons énormément et étroitement avec les médecins. C’est sur cette relation avec les professionnels de la santé que nous basons notre développement et le succès de nos appareils. Nous sommes proches d’eux. Nous comprenons leurs problèmes et c’est en fonction de leurs besoins que nous concevons des solutions aux problèmes de leurs patients. La vulgarisation du Cardiopad dépend surtout du degré avec lequel celui-ci pourra répondre aux attentes des médecins 


In our development strategy, we are working hard on establishing a close rapport with physicians.We base the development and success of our products on our keen understanding of the local health professionals. We are close to them and value their relationships. We understand their problems according to the needs they express, we are able to develop solutions for their patients. A wider distribution of the Cardiopad will depend mostly on the degree to which it can meet the expectations of local doctors. 

Is Guyana's Population in Decline?

Ever since the quotation made famous by Mark Twain, that there are three types of lies – lies, damn lies and statistics – the profession of statistics invariably finds itself under the microscope… examines the preliminary report on the Guyana Population and Housing Census.

Barbados: No Love in the Cemetery

As a mourner discovers exposed skeletal remains and discarded bits of coffins in a local cemetery, Barbados Free Press laments “the latest indignities to buried friends and relatives”.

What to Do Before Pregnancy

[All links direct to pages in Spanish.]

Zahir Aileen, author of the blog Las netas de mamá (Mom´s truths), lists a series of important recommendations to women who want to get pregnant in this article:

Si ya tomaste la decisión de ser madre espera solo un poco (uno a tres meses) para darte un espacio de preparación para tener una salud óptima para vivir tu embarazo y permitir que tú bebé se desarrolle adecuadamente. Este es el motivo por el cual es mejor comenzar a actuar tal como si estuvieras embarazada antes de estarlo de verdad.

If you already made the decision to have a baby, just wait a while (one to three months) to give yourself time to prepare in order to be in excellent health ahead of your pregnancy and let your baby grow properly. This is why it's better to start acting as if you were pregnant even before you are.

The blog is dedicated to share interesting issues for parents and those who are expecting. You can follow them on Twitter.

This post was part of the sixth #LunesDeBlogsGV (Monday of blogs on GV) on June 9, 2014.

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