Advance Market Commitment Encourages Access to Medicine in Poor Countries

The governments of Italy, the United Kingdom, Canada, Russia, and Norway and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation announce the first long-term agreements made by pharmaceutical firms to provide increased access to medicine by supplying new, affordable vaccines against pneumococcal disease to the worlds poorest countries.

GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and Pfizer Inc. were the first companies to agree to supply pneumococcal vaccines through the Advance Market Commitment (AMC). These vaccines may be available as early as this year at a fraction of the price charged in industrialized countries.

“We welcome GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and Pfizer Inc. as AMC-supplier(s) and hope that more suppliers will join in soon, in particular emerging vaccine manufacturers from developing countries” expressed Paul Fife, Norway Head of Department.

The AMC was created to stimulate the development, manufacture, and uptake of affordable vaccines that meet the needs of developing countries.

“The AMC demonstrates how innovative thinking about global markets can save lives in the worlds poorest countries,” said Tachi Yamada, president of the Gates Foundations Global Health Program.

In June 2009, the governments of Italy, the United Kingdom, Canada, the Russian Federation, Norway and the Gates Foundation launched a pilot AMC with a collective US$1.5 billion commitment. In addition, GAVI will help fund the total cost of these vaccines by contributing up to US$ 1.3 billion for the period 2010 to 2015.

“Today we have taken an important step forward in harnessing the potential of the pharmaceutical industry. As a result developing countries will be able to better protect the lives of their children at a price that is affordable and over a time frame that will deliver sustainable improvements in global health targets,” said United Kingdom International Development Minister, Mike Foster. “The UK will continue to champion innovative solutions that deliver more health for less money.”

Thanks to these financial commitments, pharmaceutical companies have responded to the incentive and committed to supply millions of doses of life-saving vaccines for ten years at an affordable price an unprecedented achievement providing increased access to medicine for millions of people. The AMC enables developing country governments to budget and plan for their immunisation programmes knowing that vaccines will be available in sufficient quantity and at a price they can afford over the long term.

Pneumococcal disease takes the lives of 1.6 million people each year including up to one million children before their fifth birthday. More than 90 percent of these deaths occur in developing countries, where access to medicine is not always available. Pneumonia, the most common form of serious pneumococcal disease, accounts for one in every four child deaths, making it the leading cause of death among young children. It is estimated that the pilot could save approximately 900,000 lives by 2015 and up to seven million lives by 2030.

To learn more about this program and access to medicine, visit Global Health Progress at http://www.globalhealthprogress.com.

The Power of Natural Alternative Medicine – Part 1

The doctor of the future will give no medicine, but will interest his patients in the care of the human body, in diet and in the cause and prevention of disease.”…Thomas Edison, 1902

We have many different options for healthcare today, but the focus of this article will be on biologically based treatments and prevention. The National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) defines the scope of biologically based practices to include, but is not limited to, botanicals, animal-derived extracts, vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, amino acids, proteins, prebiotics and probiotics, whole diets, and functional foods.

But first, lets take a look at the different philosophies of healthcare practiced today. Allopathic, alternative, complementary, integrativewhat does it all mean? Each includes many different kinds of therapies, and although alternative, complementary and integrative are sometimes used interchangeably, the general focus of each is different.

Allopathic medicine focuses on disease and the treatment of the physical body with drugs and surgery. These are conventional physicians with the title of M.D. that are universally recognized as having a medical degree.

Alternative medicine includes those therapies not generally recommended by allopathic physicians. It includes Energy Medicine, Ethnomedicine, Chiropractic, Acupuncture, Homeopathic Medicine, Botanical or Herbal Medicine, Biomolecular Medicine, Manual Medicine, Spiritual Medicine.

Complementary medicine includes therapies used by both alternative and allopathic physicians. It includes Exercise Medicine, Environmental Medicine, Social Medicine, and Nutritional Medicine.

Integrative medicine is the attempt to integrate the many philosophies of medicine, allopathic, complementary, and alternative, to treat the whole person, physical, emotional, spiritual, and intellectual.1

Many people are hesitant about trusting their healthcare to anyone other than an allopathic physician. But did you know that Naturopathic Medical Doctors are the only physicians who receive complete training in conventional medicine as well as natural medicine? Licensed naturopathic medical doctors (N.M.D. /N.D.) attend a four-year graduate level naturopathic medical school where they are educated in all of the same basic sciences as a conventional M.D. In addition to this training, they are extensively educated in the philosophy and implementation of safe and effective natural therapeutics with a strong emphasis on disease prevention. Unfortunately, some states do not yet offer licensing for Naturopathic Doctors.

Allopathic physicians and pharmaceutical drugs are, and always will be, necessary for acute, emergency medical care and trauma, as well as for conditions that cannot be controlled with lifestyle changes, good nutrition and supplements. But many conditions can be prevented and controlled with lifestyle changes and biologically based medicine. Just as many pharmaceutical drugs can interact with other drugs, some biologically based supplements may interact with drugs and cause side effects, so a healthcare provider should always be consulted before adding supplements to the diet. In some cases, alternative therapy may actually have beneficial synergistic effects in conjunction with existing medical therapy, even when not feasible as a replacement.

Biologically based medicine is not new. It was practiced for thousands of years before pharmaceutical companies began manufacturing the first synthetic drugs. In addition, many of the pharmaceutical preparations used around the world are based on plants. As late as the 1930’s, the formulation of about 80% of synthetic pharmaceutical drugs began with a natural compound. Today, about 25% of prescription drugs contain active ingredients derived from plants.

The United States has the most advanced medical system in the world, yet the population is increasingly turning to natural healing methods. However, the U.S. still lags behind world stats. A survey of 31,000 U.S. adults conducted by the National Center for Health Statistics in 2004 showed that 35 percent use some form of complementary and alternative medicine. Today, the World Health Organization estimates that herbal medicine is still the primary source of health care for approximately 80 percent of the worlds population.

Chronic diseases such as heart disease, cancer, and diabetes are the leading causes of death and disability in the United States. These diseases and other chronic diseases such as obesity, depression, metabolic and digestive disorders, rheumatoid arthritis, osteoporosis, and fibroids, account for 7 of every 10 deaths and affect the quality of life of 90 million Americans. Chronic diseases are among the most prevalent and most costly, yet they are the most preventable.

Conventional physicians treat chronic diseases with expensive pharmaceuticals that may temporarily relieve the painful or uncomfortable symptoms, but the drugs do nothing to resolve the underlying cause, and may actually cause other side effects and serious problems. Because nutrition affects our immune system, organ function, hormonal balance and cellular metabolism, many of these chronic conditions and diseases can be traced to a nutrition deficiency. When the deficiency is not corrected, symptoms begin to appear and eventually lead to disease and premature aging.

Many pharmaceuticals can effectively be replaced with multivitamin supplements, botanicals, amino acids, prebiotics and probiotics, fresh foods and functional foods for both prevention and treatment. Because herbs work synergistically, combinations of herbs with similar properties enhance the properties of each. This is why choosing a product containing a combination of different herbs is usually more effective than choosing individual selections. An example of this is the combination of valerian, passion flower and hops to promote relaxation and restful sleep. All three have a relaxing effect on the body. Valerian relaxes muscle tension, while hops relaxes the nervous system, and passiflora acts as a sedative. Popular alternative medicine company Melaleuca even offers a product called RestEZ, a supplement that contains all three natural sleep enhancers: valerian, passion flower and hops.

In part two of The Power of Natural Alternative Medicine we will discuss the regulation of nutritional supplements and little known history of natural medicine. This publication is courtesy of RMBarry Publications who publish various books about Melaleuca Products.

Mirrorless Medicine Cabinet Trendy Way of Storing Collectibles

As the world is getting modernized day by day therefore to match up their pace with this ultra modernized world people prefer to stay in small apartments and because of this it becomes quite difficult for them to manage there and keep the home clean at the same time. In this small space it becomes very difficult to manage the stuffs like medicines, toiletries and magazines etc. The only solution to this problem is redecorating the house that is to make use of antic corners and cabinets but this phenomenon becomes quite expensive to adopt. Therefore to avoid these reckless spending people prefer to buy Mirrorless medicine cabinet which is contemporary and takes up less space.

The mirror less medicine cabinets have striking brass knobs and chrome and also possess nickel hinges and it is very easy to fix them on wall with simple screws and these cabinets have much space therefore medicines and other collectibles can be managed effectively. It is observed that bathrooms are mostly congested so to avoid this mess it is advisable to install white bathroom cabinet. This takes up less space and adds style to the overall look of the bathroom and easily accommodates all the necessary things and collectibles. This is a most prudent choice for the people living in apartments and it makes their life ordered and comfortable.

The shelf systems are another viable option for the homes that has storage problem as in every home arrangement and space are the key factor of synchronization. It makes the dcor of the home managed and in order that helps the people live their life in peace without any disturbance. The wooden shelves are most preferred choice of the people as these are elegant and durable material that can be used for the storage purpose.

It is a common practice in every home to throw small parties and get together in any special occasion and wines and other drinks form indispensable part of such occasions. Therefore people in such occasions feel the need of the wine rack cabinet. These cabinets have glass doors therefore can be effectively used for the decoration purpose and are available in materials like metal, wood and glass etc. the wine racks also possess temperature control to keep the drinks chilled and these rack also has lock on the temperature control so as to avoid any kind of mishap. These cabinets are often equipped with alarms to keep them off from the reach of the children.

WG Wood Products is the best manufacturer and exporters company.To get best Mirrorless medicine cabinet, shelf systems, wine rack cabinet and all storage media visit http://www.WGWoodProducts.com .

Herbal Medicine, Homeopathy,and Plant Spirit Shamanism,

Listening to the Plants Nature is Talking to us.

The shamans say that plants connect us with nature because they take their nourishment directly from the earth, as well as the sun’s rays, the air, and water. They allow us to know and recognize ourselves. A shaman must know this and must love his people to heal them. Here are just a few of the plant healers.

Jergon Sacha (Dracontium peruviuanum)

My first exposure to this plant came about quite accidentally, when one day walking through the rainforest studying the properties of the plants, the maestro Javier queried why I always walked around with a machete. I jokingly replied it’s against anacondas!. He paused in thought for a moment and beckoned for me to follow him, a few minutes later we came across this tall stemmed plant. He proceeded to cut it down and then whip me around the body paying attention to my legs and the soles of my feet.. He then said no more problems, you are protected against snakes. I asked him why this plant was used in this way, and he indicated the pattern on the stem which looks identical to the snakes in the forest. Later as I started to investigate this plant even more, I discovered some interesting correspondences; this is a plant which is widely used as an antidote against snake bite venom in the Amazon.

This is accordance with the doctrine of signatures’ concept. This doctrine is at the heart of homeopathy, folk medicine, and plant shamanism. The doctrine was revealed by the great alchemist and physician Paracelus who lived in the 16th Century. The underlying principle was that the healing properties of the plant are not only in the outer physical’ form, but also in their inner or spiritual nature. The Doctrine of Signatures holds that this inner nature can be revealed by it’s outer physical form or signatures. This plant is a clear demonstration of the outer form indicating the inner qualities. It’s use is directly related to it’s physical appearance, the patterns on the tall stem closely resembles the skin patterns of the highly venomous pit viper known as Bushmaster’ or Jararaca which is indigenous to the Amazon.

The large tuber of the plant is an well known and highly effective antidote for the bite of venomous snakes. The tuber is chopped up, and immersed in cold water and then drunk. Also the chopped tuber is placed in a banana leaf and used as a poultice which is wrapped around the bite area. These procedures are repeated every few hours. Of course the deal here is that it works, and as it not possible to store anti-venom vaccines in the rainforest without refrigeration, this plant has exceptional life-saving importance.

Mocura / Mucura Petivera Alliacea. This plant can be taken orally or used in floral baths to raise energy, or take you out of a saladera (a run of bad luck, inertia, sense of not living to the full). Gives mental strength and you can feel its effects as also with Ajo Sacha, both are varieties of false’ garlic and have a penetrating aroma.

One of it’s qualities is that on a personal psychological level it can boost one’s strength. For example it is considered good in countering shyness, and can strengthen one’s own sense of personal value and authority. One of it’s properties is to help people overcome irrational’ fears & fearful memories

Medicinal properties include asthma, bronchitis, reduction of fat and cholesterol. This plant grows widely in the lower Amazon, and it is used widely in purification (floral baths) .

Pion Colorado Jatropha gossypifoilio

Has short lived effect after drinking but helps lucid dreaming later on when you go to bed. Can be used as a planta maestra and it is a plant that maestros can take when being during their initiation. Can also take with tobacco.

The plant’s properties on the physical level relate to problems such as, burns, swellings, intestinal parasites , Insect bites and stings, vaginal infections, and bronchitis. It is possible to take the resin which is much stronger but toxic if too much ingested. The resin can be applied directly to the skin.

Piri-piri, (Cyperaceae). Native people throughout the Amazon cultivate numerous varieties of medicinal sedges to treat a wide range of health problems, the native peoples for example, use sedge roots to treat headaches, fevers, cramps, dysentery and wounds as well as to ease childbirth. Special sedge varieties are cultivated by Shipiba women to improve their skill weaving and to protect their babies from illness.

Teresa a Shipiba craftswoman who joins us on our Amazon Retreats, told me that it is customary when the girls are very young for their mothers to squeeze a few drops of the piri piri’ seed sap into their eyes in order to give their daughters the ability to have visions of the designs that she will make throughout her life.

The men cultivate special sedges to improve their hunting. Since the plant is used for such a wide range of conditions, it was once dismissed as being mere superstition. Pharmacological research has revealed the presence of ergot alkaloids, which are known to have diverse effects on the body from stimulation of the nervous system to constriction of blood vessels. These alkaloids are responsible for the wide range of medicinal uses. Apparently the ergot alkaloids come not from the plant itself but from a fungus that infects the plant.

Chanca piedra Stone Breaker (Phyllanthus Niruri)

This is a hybrid name chanca meaning to break in Quechua and piedra meaning stone in Spanish. This herb from the Amazon has been used by the indigenous peoples of the Rainforest for generations as an effective remedy to eliminate gall, and kidney stones. The plant has demonstrated its effectiveness against many illnesses including, kidney problems , urinary problems, colic, dysentery, jaundice and numerous other conditions. This herb has become widely used in South America as the herbal remedy for gall and kidney stones, and can typically be bought in capsule or leaf form from many stores. This plant is used only for its pharmaceutical properties, and is not a planta maestra. As a note, this plant is also starting to become known in Western Medical circles, as when I brought some back for my mother to help her with her kidney stones, her doctor was apparently familiar with this herb, but he still didn’t want her to use it due to possible contra-indications with the prescribed pharmaceutical medicine.

Reflections.

On reflection plant medicine is totally different than pharmaceutical medication which only affects one whilst it is being taken; these kinds of plant medicines seem to have a permanent effect in some way metaphorical or otherwise altering one’s consciousness or “DNA”. Paracelus, is still a source of inspiration to all those who work with the healing properties of herbs, and the plants.

One of the great revelations that we can experience in working with the plant spirit or consciousness is that we are not separate from the natural world. In our culture we perceive ourselves to be separate beings with our minds firmly embedded within our physical being (typically our head). The plants can show you that this way of being is an illusion and that we are all connected, all of us and everything else is a discrete element in the great universal field of consciousness or spirit.

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