News Brief: Recent Events in Global Health Law

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao vows that China’s food exports would meet international standards and win the trust of people around the world by improving legislation in food safety and product quality.  Associated Foreign Press

Pakistan’s Sindh High Court (SHC) directed the federal and Sindh governments to establish a Federal Mental Health Authority (FMHA), calling the establishment of such an authority mandatory.  Daily Times

Thailand’s new new Public Health Minister Chalerm Yubamrung backed away from his earlier announced intention to push for a ban on the sale and consumption of alcohol on religious holidays and on the New Year.  Bangkok Post

The United States pledged an additional $320 million to the global fight against bird flu.  This brings the United States’ contributions to fighting the pandemic to $949 million.  Bird flu has killed 245 people in Asia, Africa, and Europe since late 2003.  The Guardian

A dramatic drop in hospitalization and emergency room visits has been noticed since a vaccine against rotavirus, the leading cause of diarrhea in infants, was introduced two years ago.  As a surprising note, the same drop has been noted even among children who have not been vaccinated because the number of infections in the community that kids can pick up and spread is cut.  Washington Post

The credit crunch is likely to hit the discovery and production of many new medicines, experts are warning as fewer investors are willing to invest money in biotech firms.  BBC News

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