Commentaries

The 'healthy migrant effect' re-examined among North Koreans in South Korea

Robinson, C. | Hopkins Humanitarian Health Digest | Published on August 9, 2018 Full Text

Abstract - Since the separation of Korea into North and South and the end of the Korean War in 1953, more than 31,000 North Koreans have fled their country and settled in South Korea. Most of these refugees (alternatively called defectors or migrants) came south since the mid-1990s when years of famine were followed by economic hardship, food shortages, and human rights abuses. The most common route has been through China and then following various routes through other Asian countries to reach South Korea. More than 70% of North Koreans in South Korea are female. 


It's about time for palliative care in humanitarian emergencies

Spiegel, P. | Hopkins Humanitarian Health Digest | Pubished on May 9, 2018 Full Text

Abstract - The Syrian crisis is a watershed moment in humanitarian action. It has shed a light on a myriad of complex issues and gaps, many relating to the protracted nature of conflict and displacement outside of camp settings in middle-income countries. The importance of palliative care in such contexts is critical, but rarely discussed, never mind addressed. It’s time to provide holistic palliative care in humanitarian emergencies consisting of pain management and psychosocial support, including social and spiritual aspects. 


Why It’s About Time For Palliative Care in Humanitarian Emergencies

Spiegel, P. | NewsDeeply Refugees Deeply | Published on May 15, 2018 | Full Text

Abstract - The importance of palliative care in such contexts is critical, but rarely discussed, never mind addressed. It’s time to provide holistic palliative care in humanitarian emergencies consisting of pain management and psychosocial support, including social and spiritual aspects.


Death and suffering in Eastern Ghouta, Syria: a call for action to protect civilians and health care

Spiegel, P. | The Lancet, Volume 391 | Published on February 23, 2018 | Full Text

Abstract - Since Feb 4, 2018, Syrian forces with Russian support have bombarded Eastern Ghouta, an enclave out of government control near Damascus. This military action has killed hundreds of civilians and injured more than 1550 people as of Feb 21, 2018,1 in an area where about 390 000 people, most of whom are civilians, have lived under siege since October, 2013. The recent escalation is reportedly part of a Syrian Government offensive supported by its Russian and Iranian allies to retake Ghouta. In just 1 day, on Feb 20, 2018, PAX, an international peace movement, documented 110 civilians killed and hundreds injured in 131 air strikes, 44 barrel bombs, 28 surface-to-surface “elephant” missiles, five cluster bombs, and countless other artillery and rocket fire.2 Amnesty International sees this as continuing “war crimes on an epic scale”


Attacks on health facilities and health workers: time for the Security Council to act

Rubenstein, L. | The Lancet, Volume 389 | Published on June 3, 2017 Full Text

Abstract - May 3, 2017, marked the first anniversary of a UN Security Council resolution that condemned attacks on health facilities and personnel in conflict and the “prevailing impunity” for these atrocities. But neither the Security Council nor governments have acted on the resolution. Now, a report by the Safeguarding Health in Conflict Coalition, Impunity Must End, shows that in 2016, the number and intensity of attacks on health services in 23 countries continued to be staggeringly high. In ten countries, hospitals were bombed or shelled. In 20 countries, health workers were intimidated, assaulted, and arrested, and in 11 of them they were killed. In 15 countries, humanitarian access to health assistance was severely curtailed.


The revised US refugee ban, health, and security

Rubenstein, L., Spiegel, P. | The Lancet, Vol 391 | Published on March 10, 2017 | Full Text

Abstract - President Trump issued a revised travel and refugee ban on March 6, 2017, in the wake of judicial orders preventing implementation of his previous ban.1,2 The new order discontinues the bar on entry into the USA for permanent residents, reduces from seven to six the number of predominantly Muslim countries whose nationals are suspended from entry for at least 90 days, ends the indefinite bar on entry of Syrian refugees, and eliminates a preference for religious minorities in refugee resettlement.


The academic case for repealing Trump's refugee and travel ban

Spiegel, P., Rubenstein, L. | The Lancet, Volume 389, Issue 10070, 679-680 | Published on February 9, 2017 | Full Text

Abstract - Academics provide education and undertake research to improve understanding, and hopefully make the world a better place. US President Donald Trump's recent executive order on Jan 27, 2017,1banning travel to the USA from seven predominantly Muslim countries (Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen) for 90 days, suspending the US resettlement programme for all refugees for 120 days, indefinitely suspending the entry of Syrian refugees, and reducing the number of resettled refugees from 110 000 to 50 000, has dramatically and negatively affected millions of people's lives.


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