In the Comment which opens the Series, The Lancet’s editor Dr Richard Horton says: “This ‘scandal of invisibility’ means that millions of human beings are born and die without leaving any record of their existence. Over three-quarters of them are to be found in sub-Saharan Africa and South-East Asia.”
The imprint of a person’s existence confirms their citizenship and represents the first step in securing their right to life, freedom, and protection. Counting human lives is a pressing priority, and the Who Counts? Team says there has been widespread neglect of the issue and little progress in four decades.
Dr Horton says: “Today, less than a third of the world’s population is covered by accurate data on births and deaths. Far greater global urgency needs to be injected into this challenge.”
Further, he calls for robust and effective national statistics systems at country level, strong government ministries, legal systems, civil service and local information networks, as well as a vocal civil society to press governments to act. He says: “The health sector can be an important catalyst in this effort.”
He concludes: “Globally, there is a gap. No single UN agency currently has responsibility for registering births and deaths. This absence has led the Who Counts? team to call for a new international body to improve civil registration efforts. But they concede that the likelihood of a new organisation being inaugurated is low. In the interim, they urge donors and global partners to do more to promote and support registration systems. Ultimately, this campaign is about how much each of us values the life of every other human being. It is a test of our humanity.”
Tony Kirby | alfa
A promising target for kidney fibrosis
21.04.2017 | Brigham and Women's Hospital
Stem cell transplants: activating signal paths may protect from graft-versus-host disease
20.04.2017 | Technische Universität München
The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.
Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...
The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...
Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.
Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...
Two researchers at Heidelberg University have developed a model system that enables a better understanding of the processes in a quantum-physical experiment...
Glaciers might seem rather inhospitable environments. However, they are home to a diverse and vibrant microbial community. It’s becoming increasingly clear that they play a bigger role in the carbon cycle than previously thought.
A new study, now published in the journal Nature Geoscience, shows how microbial communities in melting glaciers contribute to the Earth’s carbon cycle, a...
20.04.2017 | Event News
18.04.2017 | Event News
03.04.2017 | Event News
21.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
21.04.2017 | Health and Medicine
21.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy