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A walk in the Park

This blog is dedicated to everyone who has struggled with Community Medicine. Through my posts I hope to simplify and demystify community medicine. The emphasis will be on clarifying concepts rather than providing ready-made answers to exam questions.

Feedback is crucial for the success of this endeavour, so you are encouraged to comment and criticize if you cannot understand something.

If you want a topic to be discussed sooner rather than later, please let me know via

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Community-Medicine-for-ASSES/429533760433198  

[Alternatively, you may join the group communitymedicine4asses: 


Twitter: @DocRoopesh

In addition, you could take a short survey to help improve this blog:


A single example may not be able to explain 100% of a given topic, so multiple examples may be provided to explain different parts of a single concept.

If something doesn’t seem right:

a. Write to me about it (at communitymedicine4asses@yahoo.com), and

b. Cross check with another source (textbook, expert, etc.)

I hope that my exertions will make your experience with community medicine seem like a “Walk in the Park”

Note 1. Those who wish to contact me on facebook are requested to kindly send a personal message introducing themselves along with the request. This will help save time and effort of all concerned. Please do not expect me to visit your page to try and identify you/ your areas of work/ interest, etc. It is common courtesy to introduce oneself to another when interacting for the first time. I am merely requesting that the same civil courtesy be extended here, too. Henceforth, I may not accept any friend requests/ requests to join the group on facebook unless accompanied by a note of introduction (except when I already know the sender).  

Note 2. Please understand that this blog (and the corresponding facebook page/ group) is maintained in my spare time. I have a full time job, and am available to pursue these activities only after regular working hours (after 5 pm Indian Standard Time). However urgently you may wish to receive a response from me, I will be able to respond only upon returning home from work (I am offline the rest of the time).

Note 3. Please mind your language when interacting with me/ in the group linked to this blog. Rude/ offensive language will result in expulsion from both my friends list and the said group.

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19 August 2018: World Humanitarian Day- #NotATarget

Background Information:

On 19 August 2003, a terrorist attack on the United Nations’ headquarters in Baghdad resulted in the death of 22 persons, including Sergio Vieira de Mello, the UN’s top representative in Iraq.

5 years later, the UN General Assembly designated 19 August as World Humanitarian Day. Every year since then, the humanitarian community has organized global campaigns advocating for the safety and security of humanitarian aid workers; and for the survival, well-being and dignity of people affected by crises.

Key Messages:

Emergencies cause immense suffering for millions of people – usually the world’s poorest, most marginalized and vulnerable individuals.

Humanitarian aid workers, including health care workers, strive to provide life-saving assistance and long term rehabilitation to disaster-affected communities, regardless of where they are in the world and without discrimination based on nationality, social group, religion, sex, race or any other factor.

The sanctity of health care, the right to health care, and international humanitarian law are threatened:

  • patients are shot in their hospital beds,
  • medical personnel are menaced or attacked,
  • facilities are bombed,

depriving people of urgently needed care, endangering health care providers, undermining health systems and long term public health goals, and contributing to the deterioration in the health and wellbeing of affected populations.

Essential life-saving health services must be provided to emergency-affected populations unhindered by any form of violence or obstruction.

Attacks on health facilities, health workers and ambulances continue with alarming frequency. According to the data systematically collected by WHO through the Surveillance System on Attacks on Health Care, in the first half of 2018, 107 people died following 354 attacks on health facilities or transportation in 5 countries or territories (Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syrian Arab Republic, West Bank and Gaza Strip).

Every hospital destroyed and every health worker killed or injured takes health services away from the people who need them most, often taking many years to replace. Stop attacks on health care.

2018-08-17 22_10_45-World Humanitarian Day, 19 August - Opera

Health workers face danger and adversity in order to help others under challenging circumstances, whether it be in a conflict, natural disaster, disease outbreak or resource-poor settings.

Attacks on health too often mean that communities lose access to services at a time when they need them most. Reliable access to health care – especially for the most vulnerable – is vital to achieving universal health coverage and to reaching the Sustainable Development Goals.

WHO seeks to ensure that:

  • Health workers are protected and can provide health care in a safe and protected environment;
  • Patients have access to health care when they need it most;
  • Parties to conflict understand and uphold their responsibilities under International Humanitarian Law;
  • Health care delivery is not disrupted by attacks; and
  • All forms of violence against health care stop.

Violence against health workers providing care in conflict is prohibited by international law, and has therefore been globally condemned. As well as destroying human life, such attacks inhibit the ability of humanitarian agencies to respond to health emergencies, increasing the vulnerability of civilians in conflict.

2018-08-17 22_00_19-medicalworkers NotATarget- Opera

This World Humanitarian Day, WHO demands that leaders:

  • Do not target health workers, facilities, health transport or patients.
  • Respect the right of all wounded and sick persons to receive medical care.
  • Adopt and promote the UN Secretary-General’s recommendations on the protection of medical care in armed conflict.

Useful Links:

Link to the World Humanitarian Day 2018 web site:


Link to the related World Health Organization (WHO) page:


Link to WHO Secretary-General’s message on World Humanitarian Day 2018:

Link to WHO’s Surveillance System for Attacks on Health Care (SSA):


Link to multimedia resources on World Humanitarian Day 2018: