Combating the Silent Killer in Nepali Homes

Approximately 77% of Nepal’s population relies on traditional sources of fuels (mainly firewood and animal dung) for cooking, and household air pollution is becoming one of the leading risk factors for ill health in Nepal, causing around 24,000 deaths each year.

“In such scenarios, women and children are bearing a large share of associated health burden from indoor household air pollution”, states Dr. Jos Vandelaer, WHO Representative for Nepal.

To promote the use of clean household energy solutions and improve livelihoods, WHO - Nepal increases awareness on the dangers of household air pollution and promotes benefits of cleaner cooking alternatives.

World Breastfeeding Week 2019 | August 1 - 7

This year, WHO is working with UNICEF and partners to promote the importance of family-friendly policies to enable breastfeeding and help parents nurture and bond with their children in early life, when it matters most.

Breastfeeding promotes better health for mothers and children alike. Breastfeeding decreases the risk of mothers developing breast cancer, ovarian cancer, type 2 diabetes, and heart disease. Increasing breastfeeding to near-universal levels could save more than 800, 000 lives every year, the majority being children under 6 months; and could avert thousands of maternal deaths each year due to breast cancer.

WHO recommends exclusive breastfeeding starting within one hour after birth until a baby is 6 months old. Nutritious complementary foods should then be added while continuing to breastfeed for up to 2 years or beyond.

Nepal achieves Hepatitis B control

Nepal, Bangladesh, Bhutan, and Thailand have become the first countries in WHO South-East Asia Region to achieve Hepatitis B control, with prevalence of the deadly disease dropping to less than one per cent among five-year-old children.

All four countries have consistently recorded over 90% coverage with Hepatitis B vaccine doses provided during infancy for past many years. Studies conducted among five-year old children corroborated the high immunization rates, and that Hepatitis B prevalence in these four countries among children was less than one per cent.

Collaborating for Nepal’s Vision

WHO has recognized Tilganga Institute of Ophthalmology (TIO), an implementing body of the Nepal Eye Program, as its Collaborating Centre for Ophthalmology in Nepal.

Joining over 800 collaborating centres in over 80 WHO Member States, TIO is the second institute in Nepal to receive this designation (after SAARC Tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS Centre) but the first Nepalese health agency to receive the recognition.

TIO will now collaborate with WHO in providing quality formulation and implementation of eye care service delivery, ophthalmic research, and educate qualified human resources in the field of ophthalmology. This move aims to alleviate the suffering caused by blindness in Nepal, and fulfill the vision of “Prosperous Nepal, Happy Nepalis” set by the Nepali government.

“This is a win-win situation for all”, stated Dr. Jos Vandelaer, at the ceremony.

World Health Day 2019: Universal Health Coverage

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