April 2018 Member Newsletter


A comment from the coordinator, Deep Breaths blog post by Dr. Adegoke Falade, upcoming events, and PIN member and partner updates for April 2018. 


A comment from the coordinator

A special thank you to Drs. Mike English, Sam Akech, Grace Irimu, and Ambrose Agweyu of KEMRI-Wellcome Trust for the insightful presentations given during the Hospital information systems and quality of clinical care webinar event!



Deep breaths: blogs from network members

Reducing Community-Acquired Pneumonia Mortality, by Dr. Adegoke Falade, College of Medicine and University College Hospital, Ibadan, Nigeria


Community-acquired pneumonia is the commonest cause of under-five mortality. The Integrated Global Action Plan for the Prevention and Control of Pneumonia and Diarrhoea (GAPPD) framework outlines key interventions to protect against, prevent, and treat pneumonia and diarrhoea in children under-five. In 2017, the GAPPD Pneumonia score for Nigeria was only 30%, out of a minimum of 84%.


In Nigeria, pneumonia deaths occur predominantly at the primary and secondary health care levels and in the community before children can even reach a health facility. In contrast, only a very few children with severe pneumonia die at the tertiary care level. One of the major differences between the care of children with pneumonia at the tertiary level versus the primary and secondary levels is the availability of oxygen. Oxygen therapy can reduce pneumonia mortality by 35%, but oxygen is expensive and its timely delivery to secondary health care facilities can be difficult.


Two previous oxygen implementation projects in Papua New Guinea and Laos have demonstrated that improved oxygen systems can improve paediatric pneumonia outcomes for hospitalised children. We are currently conducting a large field trial in south-west Nigeria to understand how to implement improved oxygen systems more effectively – introducing pulse oximeters and oxygen concentrators as part of a comprehensive oxygen system to twelve secondary level hospitals. Results are anticipated to be available in mid-2018. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29078810


One of the most exciting findings so far, is the dramatic improvement in oxygen access to children with the introduction of pulse oximetry – leading to our conviction that pulse oximetry should be regarded as an essential clinical practice and integrated into clinical care as the fourth vital sign for all admitted children. We found that rapid adoption of pulse oximetry practices and achieving coverage levels very close to 100% can be facilitated through the involvement of opinion leaders such as senior nurses and doctors at the hospital level, coupled with training that is designed to encourage behaviour change, not just increase knowledge/skill. In addition to good training, healthcare workers need ongoing support and encouragement by senior colleagues as they acquire new skills and make pulse oximetry and good oxygen care part of routine practice. If this is done, healthcare workers will come to appreciate pulse oximetry not only as a practice to help them identify hypoxaemia and guide oxygen therapy, but also to help them monitor sick children, detect clinical deterioration, and demonstrate the importance of oxygen therapy to children and their families. 



Upcoming events

11th International Symposium on Pneumococci & Pneumococcal Diseases (ISPPD).

Melbourne, Australia. April 15 – 19, 2018.

ISPPD provides an unparalleled international forum to bring together scientific, clinical and public health experts, practitioners, and students to present, discuss, challenge and learn from the latest work and advancements on pneumococcal disease.
Want to attend the conference? Register here.



World Immunization Week, APRIL 24 – 30, 2018.

World Immunization Week aims to highlight the collective action needed to ensure that every person is protected from vaccine-preventable diseases. This year’s theme: “Protected Together, #VaccinesWork”, encourages people at every level – from donors to the general public – to go further in their efforts to increase immunization coverage for the greater good.

Find out more here.



36th Annual Meeting of the European Society for Paediatric Infectious Diseases (ESPID).

Malmö, Sweden. May 28 – June 2, 2018.

Building on the success and innovation of previous meetings, ESPID 2018 will feature a wide range of sessions and learning opportunities showcasing the latest research and developments in the field hosted by leading international experts.

Register to attend here.




Pneumonia Innovations Network member and partner updates


Speak Up Africa New York Announces New Name: The Access Challenge and New Policy Campaign Aimed at Achieving Universal Health Access 


Lagos, Nigeria, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, and New York; March 1, 2018—Speak Up Africa New York, a leading not-for-profit advocacy organization focused on universal access to healthcare and education for the world’s most vulnerable families, announced its organization’s new name, The Access Challenge, and its first initiative, ​One By One: Target 2030.


The name change reflects the group’s mission to ensure that every person —wherever in the world he or she may be—has access to basic tools and services in order to survive and thrive. Speak Up Africa New York focused its efforts on Africa. The Access Challenge will continue this Africa-based work while expanding to other regions with a focus on high-level policy engagement.


The Access Challenge, a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization, inspired by a vision of a world where every person has an equal ability to survive and thrive regardless of where she or he is born, advocates for universal access to health and education. It works with heads of state and other public officials to understand and focus on particular issues; partners with cultural luminaries to bring key issues to the attention of government and corporate leaders who can galvanize support; produces high-profile public events that shine a spotlight on governmental commitments and hold leaders accountable; and launches powerful multimedia campaigns to raise broad awareness and change cultural expectations about critical access issues. Visit www.accesschallenge.org for more information. ​



Nigeria formally welcomes Every Breath Counts Coalition


Nigeria has formally welcomed the Every Breath Counts Coalition with a letter from the Federal Minister for Health and a kick-off meeting being planned for May 2 – 3, 2018. Stay tuned for more details on this event.


An exploratory analysis of Nigeria’s “pneumonia control gaps” conducted by USAID’s Center for Accelerating Innovation and Impact with input from CHAI is currently in its final stages. Nigeria’s most critical pneumonia control gaps are in three areas: (1) very low vaccine coverage (PCV, Hib and measles), (2) very low diagnosis and treatment rates (care seeking, pulse oximetry, oxygen and antibiotics), and (3) very high rates of malnutrition (especially child wasting), concentrated in the northern states. 



Save the Children UK, UNICEF to host pneumonia side-event at Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting


Save the Children UK and UNICEF will cohost a pneumonia side-event at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in London on April 19th at 8:30am (UK time). Kevin Watkins and Henrietta Fore will both be speaking. Email Simon Wright (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) for more details. Be sure to support this event on social media using the hashtags #EveryBreathCounts and #StopPneumonia!





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Monday, 17 February 2020