Daily Brief logo

Hello readers, this is Pokuaa with your last global health newsletter before the summer break. To kick us off we look at how tobacco giants are seemingly changing their tactics by moving away from traditional cigarettes, whilst increasing the sale of electronic nicotine devices, products said to be disguised as “safer”, with the aim of targeting younger consumers.

Now on trade talks, the WTO chief has said African countries must build their vaccine production capacities, whilst also calling for intellectual property waivers, a source of contention dominating discussions amongst member states.

Moving across the Atlantic, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention back-peddles on its advice on face masks, now choosing to adopt WHO guidance on wearing masks even when fully inoculated against the Covid-19 virus.

photo journaliste

Pokuaa Oduro-Bonsrah


Global health news

Photo article

A man exhales vapour from an e-cigarette at the Henley Vaporium in Newyork. (AP Photo/ Frank Franklin II).

E-cigarettes: wolf in sheep's clothing? E-cigarettes and other smoke-free alternatives are threatening to reverse global efforts in tackling tobacco use, the World Health Organization has warned, accusing manufacturers of targeting younger people with misleading claims. Switzerland, home to the big tobacco industry, is no exception, Addiction Suisse tells Geneva Solutions.

Geneva Solutions (EN)

Building capacity to produce life-saving vaccines. The head of the World Trade Organization Ngozi Okonjo-Iwela has said African nations should build capacity to start producing vaccines, cautioning that only a handful of countries on the continent have this capacity. Even Still, WTO members remain divided over the question of waiving intellectual property rules for Covid-19 vaccines making the progress on discussions “very slow”.

Bloomberg (EN)

Here’s what else is happening

Image of the day

Photo article

A woman proudly poses with her American flag mask in New York, USA. (Credit: AP Photo/ Mark Lennihan).

Wearing masks indoors even if fully vaccinated against Covid. According to the US' Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, vaccinated people need to mask up again particularly in areas with high Covid-19 infections even if fully inoculated. This advice aligns with the World Health Organization recommendations, which the CDC was previously against. Now the CDC is back-peddling from the guidance it gave in May, which said those who'd received their jabs could leave their masks at home.

The Conversation (EN)

Next on the agenda

11 August | Workshop on digital vaccination certificate. The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) is organising a workshop on digital vaccination certification, an application said to be helpful in overcoming the most urgent and significant difficulties we face amidst the Covid pandemic.


29 August - 1 September | International Council of Nurses network conference Hosting the 11th conference on advanced practice nursing, the ICN will bring together nurses, researchers, students, and policymakers from around the world to discuss how the nursing practice could have a wider reach and bigger impact.


Number of the day

Photo article

(credit: Keystone/ Jean-Christophe Bott)

Covid certs issued in Switzerland. Since 7 June, six million people have been issued their Covid certificates in Switzerland, proud markers for those inoculated. This number seems high for the small 8.5 million population Alpine country, however an average of 770 new positive cases are reported daily with the highest cantonal incidence in Geneva. This steady infection rate is attributed to the Delta variant, which represents more than 94 per cent of new infections in the country.

Heidi.News (FR)

GS news is a new media project covering the world of international cooperation and development. Don’t hesitate to forward our newsletter!

Have a good day!

Avenue du Bouchet 2
1209 Genève