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LETTER TO EDITOR
Year : 2018  |  Volume : 45  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 49

World Health Organization releases the list of blueprint priority diseases


1 Department of Community Medicine, Member of the Medical Education Unit and Medical Research Unit, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
2 Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

Date of Web Publication27-Jul-2018

Correspondence Address:
Saurabh RamBihariLal Shrivastava
3rd Floor, Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute, Ammapettai Village, Thiruporur - Guduvancherry Main Road, Sembakkam Post, Kancheepuram - 603 108, Tamil Nadu
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/jss.JSS_8_18

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How to cite this article:
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS. World Health Organization releases the list of blueprint priority diseases. J Sci Soc 2018;45:49

How to cite this URL:
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS. World Health Organization releases the list of blueprint priority diseases. J Sci Soc [serial online] 2018 [cited 2018 Dec 12];45:49. Available from: http://www.jscisociety.com/text.asp?2018/45/1/49/237765



The problem of antibiotic resistance is growing, and the world is running out of treatment options at a very rapid pace.[1] It is important to understand that if we don't pay attention to this public health menace on an urgent note, the new antibiotics, which we are in utmost need, won't be developed in time, and thus, the stakeholders have to face a very tough time in dealing with even trivial infections.[1] The lacunae in the public health-care delivery system and research arena got totally exposed while responding to the 2015 outbreak of Ebola disease, in which thousands of people lost their lives to a disease, which came into existence more than four decades back.[2] This experience led to the indispensable need for extensive research and development (R&D) activities and even the fact that there are too many lacunae in the research arena.[2],[3]

In the year 2017, the World Health Organization (WHO) has released a list specifying the need for new antibiotics to contain 12 infections.[1] In continuation, with that for the purpose of R&D, the WHO has developed a tool for identifying the diseases and microorganisms, which should be given priority for R&D, especially in public health emergencies.[4] The idea is to earmark those diseases which pose a potential to result in an epidemic, and for which, there are no or inadequate measures available to interrupt the disease transmission.[4]

In the recently released revised blueprint by the WHO, a total of 11 diseases (Ebola, Zika, Lassa fever, Crimean–Congo hemorrhagic fever, Marburg disease, Nipah and henipaviral diseases, Rift Valley fever, etc.,) have been identified, which can cause epidemics, mainly due to the absence of efficacious drugs and/or vaccines.[3],[4] In the same list, a Disease X has also been shortlisted, which refers to a global epidemic in humans that can result because of a pathogen not yet known.[4] Further, it has been emphasized to strengthen diagnostic services, improvement in the available drug, or vaccines for various diseases and the fact that any pathogen can be included in the blueprint (and not only viruses).[4]

The planned research should be done in the field of basic research, epidemiological, entomological, or multidisciplinary studies, and even social science.[3],[4] Also, duplication of resources should be avoided, and if possible, similar measures should be developed by pathogens from the same families.[4] In addition, the impact of such priority diseases on special population (namely, migrants and victims of disasters) should also be assessed.[4] Moreover, emphasis has been given to universally adopt one health approach, as it will simultaneously aid in strengthening of the R&D activities to prevent and control animal origin diseases.[4]

To conclude, it is high time that the global stakeholders streamline the issue of lack of R&D activities for all the diseases, which bears the potential to cause major global epidemics.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.



 
  References Top

1.
World Health Organization. WHO Publishes List of Bacteria for which New Antibiotics are Urgently Needed; 2017. Available from: http://www.who.int/mediacentre/news/releases/2017/bacteria-antibiotics-needed/en/. [Last accessed on 2018 Feb 13].  Back to cited text no. 1
    
2.
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS, Ramasamy J. Lessons learnt from the 2014 Ebola outbreak in West-Africa. J Res Med Sci 2015;20:107-8.  Back to cited text no. 2
    
3.
World Health Organization. Ebola Virus Disease – Fact Sheet No 103; 2018. Available from: http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs103/en/. [Last accessed on 2018 Feb 14].  Back to cited text no. 3
    
4.
World Health Organization. List of Blueprint Priority Diseases; 2018. Available from: http://www.who.int/blueprint/priority-diseases/en/. [Last accessed on 2018 Feb 17].  Back to cited text no. 4
    




 

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