Health


The Dr. Saw Mya Aung Foundation announced that it will provide 50 amputees in Burma with prosthetic hands that have the ability to seize and hold objects. (more…)

Natural medicines remain an important alternate remedy in Myanmar as local and foreign pharmaceutical companies look to gain a foothold in the market. A pioneer in the field of alternative medicine, Dr. Khin Maung Lwin founded Fame Pharmaceuticals in 1994. He graduated from the Institute of Medicine 2 (Yangon) in 1984, served in the Myanmar Army Medical Corps for more than five years and has also pursued post-graduate studies in the United States and the United Kingdom. Dr. Khin Maung Lwin spoke with The Irrawaddy’s Kyaw Hsu Mon about the alternative medicine market in a country better known for its counterfeit drugs.
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A farmer who was imprisoned in Maubin prison for the murder of a policeman during land rights protests in 2013 has been sent to a psychiatric hospital after staging a hunger strike.
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A Police force “special project” to reduce sexual crime during Thingyan has resulted in registered contraceptive pills – and even condoms – being pulled from shelves, in a move health professionals say is highly misguided. (more…)

Only a few shops are open in Bahan Township’s unusual bazaar at 6:45 am on a Saturday, when those who exercise nearby come to buy their produce. The once-weekly market began offering a rare selection of natural fruits and vegetables in March for customers concerned with food hygiene and safety.
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Even before you see the mountain, you can smell it. The enormous rubbish tip east of the Thai border town of Mae Sot slowly rots under the sun. Clambering over it are countless men, women and children, entire families armed with long sticks tipped with a hook or using their bare hands to search for usable – or edible – loot.
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Students arrested after the Mar. 10 Letpadan protest crackdown have requested their trials to be opened to the public for future hearings and say that some detainees are in need of medical attention, according to family members.
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It’s been months since U Maung Haw lost the foot of his prosthetic leg. A guard in a remote rubber plantation, U Maung Haw couldn’t get leave approved to travel to the Hpa-An Orthopaedic Rehabilitation Centre (HORC) – run by the Myanmar Red Cross Society – to receive a new prosthesis. But when he heard that the centre’s mobile repair team would be visiting nearby Kyaik Hto, he drove for four hours by motorbike in the hope of getting assistance.
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The Myanmar government has been criticised for its plan to split the Department of Health into the Department of Public Health and the Department of Medical Care at the start of the upcoming fiscal year.
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The World Food Programme in Myanmar is short of US$35 million [K35 billion] for the country’s food assistance requirements this year.
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Ms Grete Faremo, United Nations Under Secretary-General and Executive Director of UNOPS, urged Myanmar to continue to extend essential health care to poor and vulnerable communities, and pledged to support the development of the country’s health, according to a press release issued on March 26 by the United Nations Office of Project Services or UNOPS.
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HIV-positive patients are concerned for the future quality of their medical options as the government takes control of HIV care and aims to largely decentralise treatment to the township level by next year.
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The World Food Programme has welcomed the Myanmar’s adoption of the Zero Hunger Challenge and its aim of achieving Zero Hunger in Myanmar by 2025, according to a press release from the United Nations Development Programme and World Food Programme on March 13. (more…)

Burma’s Ministry of Health has declared ten brands of Chinese-made medicines prohibited for sale, saying that they are not registered with local health officials. (more…)

Refugees taking shelter on the Sino-Burmese border after fleeing fighting in northeast Burma’s Kokang Special Region are facing shortage of humanitarian support, according to Kokang lawmakers in contact with them.
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The Mon Women of Prowess Organization, also known as MiCaoBu, is currently providing mobile medical care and free medical treatment to local people through its traveling clinic.
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The Three Millennium Development Goal Fund will partner with the with United Nations Population Fund to support the Myanmar Health Ministry’s plans to strengthen the health system, according to a press release from the fund on March 5. (more…)

Two United Nations agencies are calling for a national immunisation program to resume in Shan State’s Kokang region, despite ongoing violence that has claimed more than 130 lives.
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The Livestock Breeding and Veterinary Department in Sagaing Division has imposed a temporary ban on the transportation of poultry across the region amid a fresh outbreak of bird flu.
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They endured years of imprisonment – and, in many cases, torture – for their political beliefs, before being released amid government reforms. But thousands of former political prisoners in Myanmar are still suffering, according to the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (AAPP), due to financial hardship and poor health.
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