Here are some of the latest health and medical news
developments, compiled by the editors of HealthDay:
6.6 Million Children Under Age 5 Died in 2012: UNICEF
Childhood death rates have fallen 50 percent worldwide since
1990, but about 6.6 million children under the age of 5 still died
last year, according to UNICEF.
The U.N. children's agency said that five countries -- China,
Congo, India, Nigeria and Pakistan -- account for nearly half of
all the children who die, the
The leading causes of death are malaria, pneumonia and diarrhea,
which claim the lives of about 6,000 children under age 5 each day.
A lack of nutrition contributes to nearly half these deaths, UNICEF
"Progress can and must be made," said Anthony Lake, the agency's executive director, the APreported. "When concerted action, sound strategies, adequate resources and strong political will are harnessed in support of child and maternal survival, dramatic reductions in child mortality aren't just feasible, they are morally imperative."
Camels May Be Linked to Deadly Respiratory Virus in People
There is growing evidence that camels are the most likely bridge
in the transmission of a lethal respiratory virus between bats and
The virus that causes Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS)
has not been detected in camels, but antibodies that react to the
virus have been found in the blood of camels in Sudan, Egypt, Oman
and the Canary Islands,
The New York Timesreported.
The presence of the antibodies suggests that these camels have
recovered from infection with the MERS virus or a closely-related
Many of the 114 people known to have had MERS had no contact
with camels, but the first confirmed or suspected cases in three
separate clusters of patients may have had contact with the
animals, and in two cases, the camels appeared to be ill,
One case involved a 38-year-old man in Saudi Arabia who was a
camel dealer with at least one obviously sick camel. The man died
of what was diagnosed as bacterial pneumonia, but other members of
his family later became ill and were diagnosed with MERS, and two
of them died, according to the Saudi newspaper
In another case, a 73-year-old man in Abu Dhabi became ill
shortly after contact with a sick racing camel in his stable. The
first confirmed case of MERS was a man in Saudi Arabia who had four
Surveillance for the MERS virus in the Middle East is
inadequate, Henry Niman, a Pittsburgh biochemist who tracks viral
The Times. He said too few camels are being tested in
countries with human cases of MERS, and people in poor countries
who fall ill with what might be MERS are not being tested.
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