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World Adventist News Roundup: Health edition

A quick round up of news about Seventh-day Adventism around the world.

+ Fijian village church reduced to ashes, $15,000 in damage, no cause determined.

+ Another Press-Enterprise feature on Loma Linda University Adventist Health Sciences Center and its new CEO Richard Hart.

A former consultant for the World Health Organization who worked as a public health administrator in Tanzania for four years, Hart hopes to continue making as many as six trips a year to developing countries.

“My roots are in international health,” he said. “My doctor of public health degree is in international health, so I have been involved internationally all my life.

“If you are talking about developing countries, which I prefer to call the majority world, we’re talking about people who are living on $300 to $500 a year,” Hart said. “We are talking about health care budgets that run around $5 a year per person, so you have huge gaps that have just gotten wider around the world.

“One of the pledges I made to myself,” even with a new job, he said, “is that I don’t want to lose that connection and understanding of what’s happening out in the world. I want Loma Linda, as it increasingly becomes a global institution, to not just put out Band-Aids, but to engage in real-life fundamental infrastructure and substructure improvements. That’s hard work.”

Interestingly in an end note, there’s this: “Daughter Chandra, a public health graduate of Loma Linda, is a former hospital administrator who works for the U.S. Embassy in Haiti.”

Dr. Hart, who has a doctorate from Johns Hopkins University in public health, seems to make it clear that a future emphasis will be on community health care around the world.

+ Adventists are getting almost daily press in Pakistan right now because a very famous Pakistani poet is fighting for his life.

The coming week is critical for Ahmed Faraz, who is fighting for his life in the intensive care of a Chicago hospital since July 7.

While Faraz is still undergoing dialysis three times a week to keep his kidneys functioning, he has developed a weakness in his right arm and leg. He is conscious and aware of his surroundings, makes eye contact, recognises the few who are allowed to visit him, but does not quite manage to speak. The good signs include a strong heart and his blood pressure, which is under control. He is also breathing on his own without the aid of a respirator. A team of seven highly qualified Pakistani-American doctors is attending on him at Chicago’s Adventist Hinsdale Hospital, one of the best in the city. A neurologist will examine Faraz this week to determine his cerebral health. The poet’s son Shibli Faraz is in Chicago. Messages of goodwill keep coming in from all over.

+Guatemalan Adventists celebrate 100 years in their country. ANN notes a Jan Paulsen visit and that “more than 60,000 Adventists participated in 30 marches throughout Guatemala earlier this month.”

+Eastern Caribbean Seventh-day Adventists handed out assistance including cheques totaling over $10,000 as a part of their humanitarian follow up to last year’s Arch Cot tragedy, a cave-in that affected many Barbadians.

+ANN also reports that “nearly 130” Adventist youth in Southern Mexico are receiving special training in producing news articles and videos for the Web.

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