Welcome to the Global Health Strategic Group newsletter,

Your bi-monthly peek at what is happening behind the scenes in the field of global health, with trending news, upcoming events, funding opportunities and more! Read on to find out what researchers across all disciplines of global health research have been up to in recent months. We look forward to staying connected with you!

One of the RRSPQ's objectives is to promote the exchange and usage of knowledge among and by the various actors in the population health network. To this end, we would like to invite all members of the RRSPQ to share their publications or activities (conferences, webinars, etc). These will be advertised on the RRSPQ website and the network’s social media accounts, insofar as they are relevant to population health research and ideally relating to the specific themes of the strategic groupings.
Global Health News

Just under a year after Brazil’s Zika virus outbreak, the country is now experiencing an unprecedented rise in cases of yellow fever. In recent months, the disease has spread to new areas of the country, alerting public health authorities to this growing issue. So far, 568 cases have been reported this year in 51 different counties. Concerns stem from the fact that the global yellow fever vaccine stock has been steadily decreasing, and that the disease, previously confined to rural areas, may spread to large urban centers as it moves towards more densely-populated areas.

                                                           Study: A New Strategy to Stop Female Genital Mutilation
A study published recently in the journal of Nature Ecology and Evolution has revealed that in cultures where the practice of female genital mutilation is entrenched, women with cut genitalia tend to have a higher number of babies who survive than women with uncut genitalia. This relationship is most likely due to the fact that uncut women are considered to be unclean and are ostracized by their communities, thus reducing their chance of childbearing. Nevertheless, these findings suggest that strategies to reduce female genital mutilation should place less of an emphasis on risk education, instead promoting the creation of social networks for uncut and cut women to dispel myths about their relative statuses.
Where are Sierra Leone's missing Ebola millions?

“Two years since a damning report on the handling of funds to fight the Ebola outbreak, Sierra Leone’s auditor general, Lara Taylor-Pearce, says some of the missing money remains unaccounted for.” This misappropriation of funds was first brought to light when an internal audit of the first six months of the outbreak revealed at least 14 million USD in unaccounted for funds. In many cases, high-risk health workers were not provided with their allowances over the course of the outbreak response. According to the auditor general, this misallocation of funds negatively impacted the response to the disease and potentially cost many lives.
Study Finds Lower, but Still High, Rate of C-Sections in China

A new report has indicated that China, previously criticized for its high C-section rates, has rates lower than were reported initially. This study has found that 35 percent of Chinese babies were delivered via caesarean over the span of one year. Although C-sections are a medical necessity in certain cases, China’s high rates were determined to be a result of its former one-child policy and changing medical care conditions. Chinese public health authorities have taken to educating parents, doctors and midwives and advising individual hospitals with high caesarean rates in an effort to curb this trend.  
Upcoming Events & Conferences
When: March 24-26, 2017
Where: Hotel Delta, Montreal, Quebec

The Montréal World Health Organization Simulation (MonWHO) is an annual global health conference that brings together over two hundred health-minded students from universities across Canada and the US. Delegates have the opportunity to represent a member country of the World Health Organization, an NGO, or a pharmaceutical company and work with other nations to develop resolution papers that offer solutions to specific global health problems. Delegates can also participate as journalists, working side by side with the camera crews and media team to provide live coverage of the entire conference. This year, the theme of the conference will be Sexual Health. Register soon to be sure to get a spot!
Annual Canadian Conference on HIV/AIDS 2017
When: April 6-9, 2017
Where: Hotel Bonaventure Montreal, Montreal, Quebec

Every year, the Canadian Association for HIV Research hosts the premier gathering in Canada for all those involved HIV/AIDS research and intersecting disciplines. This year’s conference theme is “We’re Not Done Yet,” aiming to highlight the fact that although tremendous successes have been achieved in the fight against HIV/AIDS, much remains to be done. Leading edge topics will be discussed and attendees will be able to share the outcomes of new research and policy decisions. 
World Health Summit 2017
When: May 8-9, 2017
Where: Université de Montréal, Montreal, Quebec

The Université de Montréal and the Clinical Research Institute of Montreal will be hosting this year's M8 Alliance World Health Summit in Montreal. The theme,  “Health and Healthcare Delivery in Pluralistic Societies,” will focus on the question of human diversity in the practice, education, research and public policy pertaining to health. Registration is ongoing! 
When: June 13-23, 2017
Where: McGill University, Montreal, Quebec

McGill’s Summer Institute in Infectious Diseases and Global Health is returning for Summer 2017! Hosted by McGill Global Health Programs, the Summer Institute short courses feature internationally known faculty, a focus on highly applicable new knowledge, and an opportunity to network with fellow global health professionals from around the world. The courses offered during this two-week program will include TB Research Methods, Global Health Diagnostics, Advanced TB Diagnostics, Introduction to Genomic Epidemiology of Infectious Diseases, and the two newly introduced courses on Bioinformatics for Parasitic Diseases and Qualitative Methods In Global Infectious Diseases Research. Spots are filling up rapidly, so apply now!

When: June 28-30, 2017
Where: Delta Montreal, Montreal, Quebec
Convening in Montreal in the upcoming year, this conference will gather researchers, practitioners, policy makers and child advocates from across the world to share and discuss the latest research on child indicators and implications for policy and interventions, with subthemes including Physical and mental health, Poverty, deprivation, material well-being, and inequality, and Early childhood and adolescent development and education.
CSAGH 2017 Annual Conference
When: March 30, 2017
Where: Dalla Lana School of Public Health, Toronto, Canada
The Graduate Student Alliance for Global Health of the University of Toronto is proud to present the GSAGH annual conference. This year, the conference will focus on the theme of “Raising the Priority of Noncommunicable Diseases in Developing Countries”, addressing topics such as prevention, cancer, heart disease and stroke, chronic lung disease, diabetes, environmental factors, policy intervention and nutrition. The day’s activities will also include keynote speakers and a panel discussion. Best of all, registration is free!
WADEM Congress on Disaster and Emergency Medicine
When: April 25-28, 2017
Where: Toronto, Canada

The World Association for Disaster and Emergency Medicine is hosting its 20th biennial meeting of global experts together with the Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre and the CBRNE Collaborative in Toronto. This congress is designed to facilitate the exchange of knowledge and best practices on pre-hospital and in-hospital emergency medical care, disaster health and response, and emergency public health and safety. Various keynote speakers have been confirmed, including Dr. Julie Hall, Director of Health and Care for the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.

Healthy People, Healthy Ecosystems: The 8th Annual CUGH Conference
When: April 7-9, 2017
Where: Washington, DC

John Hopkins University and Makerere University are proud to present the 8th Annual Consortium of Universities for Global Health conference on implementation, leadership and sustainability in global health. This conference aims to promote interdisciplinary, cross jurisdictional conversations across the globe to tackle challenging and complex problems in a variety of global health areas.

GHIC 2017: Global Health & Innovation Conference
When: April 22-23, 2017
Where: New Haven, CT

The Global Health & Innovation Conference hosts more than 2,200 professionals and students from more than 55 countries and is recognized as one of the leading global health conferences. The 2-day conference, presented by the non-profit global health delivery organization Unite for Sight, is set to take place at Yale University. Topics discussed will touch on both the current state of global health as well as social entrepreneurship and innovation for development.  
Funding Opportunities

The QPHRN intends to support two structuring initiatives in the domain of population health research. Each project must address an original research question and generate benefits for population health interventions or public policy. The goal of this competition is to allow researchers from different institutions and disciplines to combine their expertise in order to explore new areas in population health research. 

The various Institutes and Initiatives of the CIHR offer Planning and/or Dissemination grants within the Institute Community Support (ICS) Program. These grants are intended to provide support for planning and/or dissemination activities consistent with the mandate of the CIHR. Participating institutes include the CIHR Institute of Aboriginal Peoples’ Health, the CIHR Institute of Infection and Immunity, the CIHR Institute of Population and Public Health, the CIHR HIV/AIDS Research Initiative, and the CIHR Institute of Health Services and Policy Research. 

In collaboration with the Joint Programming Initiative on Antimicrobial Resistance partners, the CIHR is offering funding for controlled studies between human population, health care systems and agricultural settings to devise the optimal intervention strategies to block transmission of AMR in humans and animals. The proposed research project should address the use and misuse of antimicrobials in human and animal health and food production settings and promote cross-sectoral efforts. 

Recent Publications
Mac-Seing M et al.
The HandiVIH study estimates and compares HIV prevalence and associated risk factors between people with and without disabilities in a resource-limited setting. Study participants were administered an HIV test and life-course history interview. It is found that people with disabilities have a higher prevalence of HIV infection than those without disabilities, due to a higher exposure to HIV infection through sexual violence and sex work as well as disability-associated HIV infection shaped by social and environmental factors. Further research on potential protections for this vulnerable population is needed. 
Adjiwanou V et al.
Using data from the Demographic and Health Surveys, the effect of Household environmental health hazards (HHH) on under-five mortality in 12 sub-Saharan African countries was assessed in this study. The HHH is quantified with the use of indicators including the source of water and its location, the type of toilet facility, the flooring material, the type of wall, the type of roof and the type of cooking fuel used in a given household. The authors find that HHH positively affects child mortality in 9 of the 12 countries analyzed, calling for more research to identify the biological mechanisms accounting for these findings. 
Maclean E, Pai M et al.

Despite the extensive research on tuberculosis biomarker candidates, there exists no accurate, simple and rapid TB diagnostic test on the market. To contribute to the development of point-of-care solutions for TB, FIND and partners have constructed a TB biomarker database to enable the dynamic tracking of evidence surrounding biomarker candidates for needed TB diagnostics. Through the integration of raw datasets and novel biomarker combinations, this database is expected to facilitate knowledge-sharing and coordination among TB researchers to aid in the development of clinically useful tools. 
Mofid LS et al.

The integration of deworming procedures in maternal postpartum care in areas where soil-transmitted helminth (STH) infections are common can have positive effects on both maternal and child health in resource-limited areas. This study of a population composed of both STH-infected and uninfected mothers was administered to test the effectiveness of maternal postpartum deworming on infant and maternal health outcomes. Among STH-infected mothers, important improvements in both infant length gain and length-for-age were recorded.
Boego I et al.

The rate of caesarean section delivery (CSD) has increased exponentially worldwide in recent years, despite its well-established morbidity, mortality, long-term effects and cost burdens. Factors contributing to this trend in low- and middle-income countries in particular are poorly understood. This review thus aims to systematically synthesize knowledge on the determinants of the CSD rate rise in private and public hospitals in LMICs and to investigate materno-fetal and materno-infant outcomes of CSD in the perinatal period between private and public hospitals by performing a review of the literature and related studies. 
Porgo V, Turgeon AF et al.

The authors perform a systematic review of studies evaluating the association between trauma systems and injury outcomes to uncover the link between the effectiveness and the organisation of trauma care worldwide. The objective of the study is to systematically review evidence of the impact of trauma system components on clinically significant outcomes to identify optimal trauma system structures and inform the allocation of resources to reduce morbidity and mortality across the globe. 
Muckle G, Ayotte P et al.

This article provides a description of the health effects associated with contaminant exposure in the Arctic, to which foetuses and young children are the most vulnerable. The neurobehavioural, immunological, reproductive, endocrine and carcinogenic effects of contaminant exposure are discussed in a prospective child cohort study. In certain instances, some of the results reported are found to be similar to studies conducted outside the Arctic.  
Students' Corner
Welcome to the Student’s Corner! This space is dedicated to the research, publications, experiences and work of students of Québec Universities, and can also serve as a platform to publicize events and activities organized by students in the realm of global health. We welcome submissions from any students who would like to contribute and see their material posted in our upcoming issues! If you are interested, get in touch with us via the RS-Santé mondiale email linked at the top and bottom of the newsletter.
That's all for now. See you next time!

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