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Expert opinion

Dr Tracey Smythe
The 1.3 billion people with disabilities around the world face increased risk factors associated with poorer overall health, such as poverty, issues in older age, malnutrition and exposure to violence. While disability is diverse, people with disabilities often report experiencing similar barriers when seeking healthcare support.
Dr Luisa Enria
Prof Shelley Lees
23 March 2024 marks 10 years since the World Health Organization reported an outbreak of Ebola Virus Disease in Guinea. This was the beginning of what remains the largest Ebola epidemic to date, as in the following months the disease spread rapidly across West Africa. Sierra Leone, Liberia, and Guinea were worst affected, registering a cumulative 28,616 cases and 11,310 deaths. The declaration of a public health emergency of international concern, coupled with national state of emergency legislation in these countries, also had long-lasting social and economic repercussions.  
Dr Pauline Scheelbeek
In a rural area in the District of Khulna, South Bangladesh, a researcher from the University of Dhaka asked me: “Do you want to taste the water yourself?” We were standing on an embankment, along the Rupsha River that leads into the Sundarbans - the largest continuous mangrove forest in the world. I had recently joined a research team from the University of Dhaka in their investigations into the unusually high number of pregnant women with pre-eclampsia in the area that was noticed by the local gynaecologist. 
Dr Jackie Cook
This year’s WHO World Malaria Report makes sobering reading and highlights the persistent challenges hindering further progress towards reducing the malaria burden.
Dr Edward Parker
And so another COVID-19 booster campaign begins in the UK. As winter approaches, and an under-pressure health system prepares to weather the storm ahead, our friends, loved ones, colleagues, and carers who are most vulnerable to the SARS-CoV-2 virus are being offered an additional vaccine dose – fortifying their protection against this unpredictable foe.
Dr Megan Carey
In many parts of the world where people have consistent access to safe water and improved sanitation, typhoid fever is a thing of the past. However, Salmonella Typhi (S. Typhi) still poses a major public health problem in many lower- to middle- income countries, with over 9 million cases and 110,000 deaths estimated in 2019.
The pathogen Shigella is the most common cause of bacterial diarrhoeal deaths globally. It is estimated to have caused 148,000 deaths in 2019, with 63% of these deaths in children under five years old.
Dr Rebecca French
Most women have periods for nearly 40 years. Over this time, women should be able to make choices to enable their own positive reproductive health and wellbeing, such as if and when to have children or how to access healthcare and treatment. Unfortunately, many areas of reproductive health, including abortion, miscarriages, infertility and menstrual issues, continue to be taboo topics and many women feel unheard, even when they have sought professional help. 
Dr Kathleen O'Reilly
The first time I visited an environmental surveillance (ES) site was back in 2015. It was hot, the sampled river was black and meandering between backyards of houses (see the photo above). The river had pipes where sewage was deposited, and the area was used to dispose of refuse. Further downstream women were washing clothes and kids were splashing around. But just a month before a river sample yielded poliovirus, related to cases elsewhere in the country. I was in Rawalpindi, Pakistan. At that time, and even now, ES is supplementing clinical surveillance to support polio eradication.
Mr Malcolm Mistry
What is going on with the weather in the Northern Hemisphere at the moment? The main reason is a wind pattern in the upper atmosphere – known as the jet stream - which is blocked or rather stationary. This is causing very hot, dry conditions over southern Europe, as well as southern US, north Africa and parts of Asia. In the UK it’s bringing cooler, wetter weather. At the same time, El Nino – a weather phenomenon which brings warmer sea surface temperatures in the equatorial Pacific roughly every 3-7 years – arrived in 2023.