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Diseases of the 3rd world countries: will they ever be eradicated?

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Introduction

Nowadays, infectious diseases are responsible for more than 13 million deaths a year; over the next hour alone, 1 500 people will die from an infectious disease, and over half of them will be children under five. In developing countries, one over two deaths is caused by an infectious disease. In this essay I will talk about the main diseases responsible for deaths in third world countries, what helps to eradicate them and what are the obstacles to this eradication. Most deaths from infectious diseases occur in developing countries, where about one third of the population live with less than $1 a day, where one third of the children are malnourished and one fifth are not fully immunized by their first birthday. More than that, the cities in some developing countries are growing very fast, causing problems with unsafe water, poor sanitation and poverty. This creates a perfect environment for the outbreaks of diseases. And in those areas, children are less likely to be immunized against killer diseases and parents are less likely to be able to pay for health care when they get sick. We know a lot of diseases responsible for deaths, but actually almost 90% of these deaths are caused by only a handful of six diseases (*): pneumonia, HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria, measles and diarrhoea. ...read more.

Middle

Childhood vaccinations are also very important because they could prevent 1.6 million deaths per year among children under the age of five. As we have already seen before, one in five children are still not fully immunized by their first birthday. The main vaccines that have to be done are the ones against diphtheria, whooping cough, tetanus, polio, measles and tuberculosis. The DOTS -as said before, it means Directly Observed Treatment, Short-course- is specific to tuberculosis and millions of tuberculosis deaths could be averted through the use of this treatment, and of course that would be great, since 3 million people die each year of tuberculosis. DOTS is a method for the detection and cure of tuberculosis that includes low-cost tests, followed by 6-8 months of support to the patient, with observation to make sure that patients do follow the treatment correctly and take sputum tests to determine whether it has been successful. This is a very effective method because it can cure the disease in up to 95% of infectious patients, even in the poorest countries. The impregnated bednets are another method of prevention for malaria because thanks to them we could avoid mosquito bites and so one fourth of the deaths caused by malaria in children. ...read more.

Conclusion

All these factors are favourable for the outbreak of diseases in a certain area. As long as these countries are not able to have a better economic situation, more and more cases of infections will appear. Mr. B�di� said: "We are also confronted, more so than elsewhere, with the ravages of the AIDS pandemic which is literally decimating our young, most productive, generations", meaning that the developing countries are losing the population the most able to help them in their economic development. "The cost of universal health care is 25 billion dollars a year, that is 3% of the 800 billion dollars currently devoted to military expenditures". When I read this sentence the first time, I thought that if developed countries would spend more money in health care, and especially to help third world countries, the diseases could be eradicated. And I wasn't completely wrong because it would greatly help if all the medicines and medical equipment would be present in those countries. But I was also wrong because money alone would not be enough to eradicate the diseases in the developing countries. To do so, it is also necessary to help these countries in having a better economic development and more education, keeping in mind their own culture. *~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~* (*) when nothing else is added, all the numbers and quotes come from WHO's report on infectious diseases: http://www.who.int/infectious-disease-report/index-rpt99. ...read more.

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