Snakebite in the News
With the 2017 addition of snakebite envenoming to the World Health Organization list of highest priority Neglected Tropical Diseases, the world is finally beginning to take notice. Here are a few of the recent articles and announcements surrounding the global effort to address snakebite. Keep an eye out for our board members as you read!
Shortage of anti-venom puts millions at risk of death from snake bite worldwide
the telegraph, 12-jul-2018
Some 93 million people are at risk of dying from snake bite because they do not have access to vital anti-venom medication or good health facilities, a new study has found...
Snake bites are now a global health priority, says WHO
- BBC, 26-may-2018
Snake bites are now a "global health priority" according to a new resolution passed by the World Health Organization (WHO) on FridayThe WHO says complications linked to attacks make the phenomenon one of the most neglected of tropical diseases.
The world health body will now develop a global plan of action to tackle the issue, which will include providing cheaper antidotes and training.
Mambas, medicine and one girl's race to survive Kenya's biting problem
- The Guardian, 24-may-2018
In a country where snakebite treatment is costly, hard to come by and often inadequate, Rashid Chiti feared the worst when his daughter was bitten by a black mamba. Now the World Health Assembly is about to pass a resolution that might finally boost funding and research for what is a widespread problem...
Striking Back: Snakebites Gain Global Attention
PLOS Global Health, 08-may-2018
Selvarasu, a coconut farmer in Erode, India, met his fate with a bite from a Russell’s viper. With his life hanging in the balance, it wasn’t until he reached a third and final hospital—some five hours away—where doctors with specialised training and access to effective antivenom and medical care saved his life. Although he survived, the envenoming rotted his leg tissue, leaving him permanently disabled and unable to climb and harvest his coconut trees. He must now pay a farmhand to do this work. At the same time, he struggles to repay loans he took out to cover the exorbitant treatment costs that saved his life. To keep his children in school and food on the table, he and his wife have had to sell their few remaining belongings and now face an uncertain future...
Can Snakebite Crisis Be Stopped? The battle to contain Africa's Hidden Killers
Rainy seasons in Nigeria bring out venomous snakes, which emerge from their shelters to hunt and breed. This is always a hazardous time, particularly for agricultural workers tending their fields, and this autumn proved especially cruel. Around 250 people were reportedly killed over a three-week period in the central states of Gombe and Plateau, in a crisis that overwhelmed local doctors and prompted a national outcry...