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Immunization Data Platform for Developing Countries

Phillips and Gavi, the vaccine alliance, are partnering to improve the quality of immunization data and its collection in primary and community healthcare. They will be piloting the project in Uganda. The goal of the partnership is to gather accurate data which both organizations believe is essential to improve patient outcomes, access to care and reduce costs. Good data is key to strengthening health systems. 

Cambodia's New Initiative to Help Prevent Child Malnutrition

A report in the science journal Nutrients estimates that malnutrition in Cambodia is costing the country $266m each year, said Al Jazeera’s Sohail Rahman, reporting from Phnom Penh. An exurberant cost for a developing country, espcially one that is now the fastest growing economy in the region. 

One novel approach to the country’s malnutrition problem is a new and inexpensive wafer snack, which is made from fish, rice, beans and other micronutrients developed specifically for the Cambodian palate.

Population-Based Indicators of Early Child Development

Foundations for health and well-being are established early in life, however, evaluation of progress in young child development and effectiveness of strategies to promote development is impeded by the lack of population-based indicators for children under aged 3 years.  With the support of the Bernard van Leer foundation the Global Child Development Group (GCDG) held a meeting in April 2014 to bring together researchers and technical experts to agree on a process to identify indicators that could be used within and across populations.

Improved Nutritional Care and Responsive Stimulation Significantly Benefits Children's Development

A recent study published in The Lancet Global Health, highlights the importance of nutrition and responsive stimulation for children's cognitive, language and motor development. The study was led by Dr. Aisha K. Yousafzaiof Aga Khan University in Karachi, Pakistan. The study followed a cohort of impoverished children in rural Pakistan whose parents had been guided and trained on strengthening nutritional care and 'responsive stimulation'.

Improving Early Brain Development in the Developing World: Nine Innovations Funded to Help Save Brain Development.

Grand Challenges Canada, funded by the Government of Canada, and the "Saving Brains" partners today announced investments in nine creative ways to protect and nurture the cognitive development of children in developing countries. The investments total up to CDN $4.2 million, shared between projects in Africa (Cameroon, Kenya, Mali, Rwanda, Uganda), Central and South America (Brazil, Guatemala, Peru) and Asia (Pakistan).

Shared Attention between Infants and Parents During Play Can Extend Child's Attention Span

A new study released in the journal Current Biology, has found that the attention span of a child can be expanded when the parent and child experience joint-attention moments during play. The researchers Chen Yu and LB Smith, were surprised to discover that parents who were more active and engaged during play with their 1 year-old child, were able to have a real-time impact on the child's attention span. The study is novel as attention-span has always been viewed as an innate feature of an individual, something individualistic that you are born with.

The UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre Report Card 13

The UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre has released the 13th installment of the Innocenti Report Card Series. The series focuses on the well-being of children in industrialized countries. Each Report Card includes a league table ranking the countries of the OECD according to their record on the subject under discussion. The Report Cards are designed to appeal to a wide audience while maintaining academic rigor.

Nearly 87 million children under seven have known nothing but conflict: UNICEF

Approximately 87 million children across the world under the age of 7 have lived in conflict since birth. These years are imperative for healthy brain development. During the first seven years of life, a child's brain has the potential to activate 1,000 brain cells every second, UNICEF said. Each one of those cells, known as neurons, has the power to connect to another 10,000 neurons thousands of times per second. Brain connections serve as the building blocks of a child's future, defining their health, emotional well-being and ability to learn,  reports UNICEF.

HIV Prevention Drugs Harmful to Child's Development

A recent study conducted at Harvard University found that the drugs given to HIV positive women to stop the transmission of the virus to the child could in fact affect the child’s development whether the child is born with the virus or not.