On the re-opening of SLPP Office … “We would never encourage violence” John Benjamin...

Sierra Leone News: Africa Notebook

Quite a sharp twist in the weather pattern these days as the west coast experienced howling blizzards while spring temperature took over in the east.
But the spring like conditions will be for a short spell, forecasters said, before it returned to another cold blast.
While I was away on vacation. Several events took place in Washington DC which drew capacity crowd and high profile guests.
One of these events was the 2018 RareVoice Awards which honored patient advocates, state legislators and congressional representatives who helped give a voice to rare disease patients. It was a widely attended public event I was told.
Health Security in a disordered World and the US leadership in meeting the health needs of vulnerable population living in the midst of conflict and disorder was the featured theme.
In the conference write-up, it was stressed that in today’s world. Chronic wars and unstable and fragile states have proliferated, giving rise to over 65 million refugees and displaced persons.
It brought forward the urgent needs to detect and control disease outbreaks to ensure reproductive. Maternal and child health services, sustain immunization and protect against violence.
Delegates agreed that the US should lead in meeting these critical health security needs.
A crusade is on in the US on teaching people how not to fall. The organizers say that falls are one of life’s greatest overlooked perils. People fear terror attacks. Ebola outbreaks and other dangers but each year, an estimated 700,000 people die worldwide after falling.
Falls are the second leading cause of death by injury after motor accidents and in the US, falls caused more than 33,000 deaths in 2015.
More people go to emergency in the US after falling than for any other form of inquiry.
Nearly 18 percent of men ages 18 to 44 had reported a fall related injury in the last three months more than double the percentage of men 65 and older.
Falls can happen anywhere at any time to anyone.
The most dangerous spots for falls are not roof tops but the low level interior settings such as stairways.
Any fall even a tumble out of bed can change life, taking someone from robust health to grave disability in less than a second.
No wonder people of all ages are being urged to learn how to fall to minimize injury and to view falling not so much as an unexpected hazard to be avoided but to be prepared for it.
Given the tremendous costs of falls to individuals and society and the increasing knowledge of how and why falls occur, it pays to learn how to prevent them and what you can do to lessen harm in a split second after you start to fall.
Be careful and watch where you are going. Don’t have your hands in your pockets as this reduces your ability to regain your balance when you stumble.
Wear good shoes. If you fall, roll. The key is to roll and try to let the fleshy part of your body absorb the impact.
As the saying goes, it’s not the fall that gets you, it’s the sudden stop at the bottom.
Life in these United States:  A renowned American broadcaster was once asked how he managed on his many globe-trotting assignments when he is in a country where he could not speak the language.
“Simple”, he replied. “I always learn two phrases – how do I get out of here – and – my friend will pay the bill”.
Thought for the week: Don’t drive as if you own the road but drive as if you own the car.

By Rod Mac-Johnson
Monday February 11, 2019.

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