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Progress against tuberculosis ‘at risk’: WHO

Urgent action and funding are needed to sustain progress in the global fight against tuberculosis (TB), the UN World Health Organization (WHO) has said, warning that global targets for prevention and treatment “will likely be missed”.

According to the UN health agency, though TB cases fell by 9 per cent and deaths by 14 per cent between 2015 and 2019, access to TB services remains a challenge. 

Stand in solidarity with world’s poor, UN chief says in message for International Day

The UN Secretary-General has called for solidarity with all people living in poverty, during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond. 

António Guterres issued the appeal in a video message to mark the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, observed annually on 17 October. 

He highlighted how the pandemic represents “a double crisis” for the world’s poorest people.   

IMF: ‘Less severe’ but ‘still deep’ recession predicted

In the shadow of the COVID-19 pandemic and its continuing impact, the global economy could see a “somewhat less severe, though still deep” recession through 2020, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has projected in its latest global economic outlook. 

The revision is driven by better-than-anticipated second quarter gross domestic product (GDP) in large advanced economies, the IMF reported on Monday, noting also stronger than expected growth in China and signs of a more rapid recovery in the third quarter. 

UN chief announces major push to transform harmful food systems

The UN chief António Guterres set out a new plan to transform the world’s food systems on Monday - coinciding with the start of World Food Week - which will culminate in a major summit, scheduled to take place in September next year.

In a video message, Mr. Guterres highlighted the importance of food systems, and their impact on economies, environment and health, but warned that they are “one of the main reasons we are failing to stay within our planet’s ecological boundaries”.

COVID-19 sparks increased demand for mental health services: UNFPA

While the global impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has been staggering, the full impact on health has been far greater, according to the UN Population Fund (UNFPA).  The agency said fear, isolation, grief, economic stress  and shuttered support services have taken a toll on the mental well-being of people around the world.

Counsellors report urgent demands for mental and psychosocial support, particularly among women and girls who are facing an increase in gender-based violence, in addition to challenges brought on by the crisis.

UN World Food Programme wins 2020 Nobel Peace Prize

The UN World Food Programme (WFP), which provides lifesaving food assistance to millions across the world – often in extremely dangerous and hard-to-access conditions – has been awarded the 2020 Nobel Peace Prize. 

The agency was recognized “for its efforts to combat hunger, for its contribution to bettering conditions for peace in conflict-affected areas and for acting as a driving force to prevent the use of hunger as a weapon of war and conflict”, said Berit Reiss-Andersen, chair of the Norwegian Nobel Committee.