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The Burnet Institute is a not-for-profit independent, unaligned organisation that combines medical research in the laboratory and the field with public health action to address major health issues affecting disadvantaged communities in Australia and internationally.

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Articles (1 - 19 of 19)

A$1.8 billion is no longer available to help populations in our neighbouring countries achieve a decent standard of health. Gates Foundation/Flickr

How cuts to foreign aid will reduce health care in the region

The federal government’s Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook announcement this week to cut the foreign aid budget by a further A$3.7 billion over three years is unprecedented. The current government has…
The country’s capacity to treat infected patients and prevent further spread is very limited. UN Women Asia & the Pacific/Flickr

How would Papua New Guinea deal with Ebola?

Contemplating how Papua New Guinea (PNG) would deal with Ebola may not be that different from asking the same of Liberia 12 months ago. While PNG’s per capita gross national income (US$2,540 in 2013) is…
A child is vaccinated against polio during a three-day nationwide campaign to eradicate polio, in Karachi, Pakistan, May 2014. EPA/SHAHZAIB AKBER

CIA stops fake vaccination programs, but will it matter?

The US government has told a group of local health educators that it will no longer use immunisation programs as a cover for espionage. But the damage from previous such programs is difficult to undo…
New treatments have minimal side effects and cure rates of over 90%. Dubova/Shutterstock

Eliminating hepatitis C – an ambitious but achievable goal

Hepatitis C is a hidden epidemic affecting 170 million people worldwide. Hepatitis C kills nearly 700 Australians every year, mostly from chronic liver failure and liver cancer, and costs over $78.9 million…
Nearly 60% of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis' global burden occurs in the Asia-Pacific region. DFAT Photo Library/ Flickr

Time to turn back the tide of drug-resistant tuberculosis

Tuberculosis, or consumption as it used to be known, sounds like a disease that we’ve managed to fight off for good. But a drug-resistant strain of the bacteria that causes it is making a comeback, and…
What we know from other disasters is that infectious disease outbreaks aren’t inevitable. AAP/FRANCIS R. MALASIG

How best to help the Philippines recover from Typhoon Haiyan

Once again, a cataclysmic disaster has hit an Asian nation. But a well co-ordinated aid response mindful of lessons from other disasters could mean a faster recovery. Last Friday, Typhoon Haiyan (known…
Armed conflict remains the major obstacle to ridding the world of this devastating disease. James Gordon, Los Angeles.

Syria’s polio outbreak is a global public health emergency

As if the children of Syria had not suffered enough, the news of an outbreak of polio (poliomyelitis) signals that even more suffering lies ahead. The polio virus invades the nervous system and can kill…
Well-targeted aid to countries in need is not just an act of generosity but an essential investment in our future. AAP

Foreign aid, like roads, is an investment

As Australians head to the ballot box we are consumed with issues that are necessarily defined by national borders. However, as Australia takes up the presidency of the Security Council and attends the…
Bill Gates is in Australia as part of efforts to secure funds for global health initiatives, particularly polio and malaria eradication. Gates Foundation

Polio eradication efforts need money and political commitment

Global health campaigner Bill Gates is in Sydney today to lobby prime minister Julia Gillard to spend more money on global health, particularly the fight against malaria and polio. But while money may…
It’s time to let the journal impact factor die. Ben McLeod

Do not resuscitate: the journal impact factor declared dead

Science is a highly competitive business so measuring the impact of scientific research, meaningfully and objectively, is essential. The journal impact factor (JIF) has emerged over the past few decades…
The Nigerian commissioner for health of Bauchi state, Dr Sani Malam (L), administers a polio vaccine to a Nigerian child during the launch of the national immunization drive in Nigeria on February 5, 2013. EPA/DEJI YAKE

Killing polio workers threatens grave global consequences

The murder of nine female health workers involved in child immunisation on February 8 in Kano (the largest city in northern Nigeria) is a chilling reminder that saving children’s lives is not a goal shared…
Tony Abbott at a press conference after the prime minister announced the election will be held on September 14. AAP/Alan Porritt

Coalition commitment to medical research funding is welcome

It was a big day in political circles yesterday, with Prime Minister Julia Gillard announcing an election date and launching her priorities for the nation. Among the hubbub that followed, an important…
Many people with chronic hepatitis B in Australia were born in nearby countries where vaccination is still not provided to many children. Andrew W. McGalliard

Why Australia needs to support its neighbours to stop hep B

Of the more than 175,000 people living with chronic hepatitis B infection in this country, the majority were born overseas in high prevalence countries. Most have come from Asia and the Pacific, a region…
As many as one in four girls in the Pacific aged between 15 and 19 years are already mothers. Graham Crumb

Life saver: why Pacific women deserve contraceptive choice

World leaders, international donors, government officials from developing countries and civil society organisations gathered at the London Summit on Family Planning overnight to support the right of women…
A coconut scraping competition during a sports day organised by one of Sri Lanka’s Elder' Clubs. Wendy Holmes

Social inclusion brings respect and better health to Sri Lankan elders

Non-communicable diseases – In the final article in our series on NCDs, Wendy Holmes looks at a successful strategy for mitigating the impact of these diseases in Sri Lanka. The grey-haired women in their…
HIV patients need their immune system tested every six months. AAP

Solving the HIV treatment catch-22

It’s a cruel catch-22. Vastly improved antiviral drugs have the potential to significantly improve the lives of people with HIV. But before this can happen, they need to take a test. Trouble is, the test…

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