Joanne Silberner | WOSU Radio

Joanne Silberner

In 1969, volunteer teams of doctors and nurses from a U.S. charity called Interplast began flying to poor countries to do reconstructive surgery. They operated on children with cleft lips, cleft palates or burn scars so thick their limbs were immobilized.

It sounded like a great idea. The team members donated their time, paid for their travel and lodging and sometimes their supplies, and got to do good. They were among the first teams of Western docs to take part in fly-in missions.

The major cause of death in children aged 1 to 19 years is not cancer or other another medical condition. It's injury. And by a long shot – 61 percent, versus 9 percent for cancer.

The largest cause of injury was motor vehicle crashes, and next was firearms, according to a study published today in the New England Journal of Medicine. The study sorts through the 20,360 deaths of U.S. children and adolescents in 2016, as counted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

A new report by a commission empaneled by University College London and the Lancet medical journal offers a thorough — and often surprising — look at the medical and economic impacts of immigration.

It's a major milestone in the fight to recognize mental health and mental illness as global issues: a comprehensive report from the Lancet Commission on Global Mental Health, three years in the making, released this past week at a London summit with royals Prince William and Kate Middleton, Duchess of Cambridge, in attendance to show their support for the cause.

But it was not a celebratory event. Threaded throughout the 45-page report is a lament that the world is ignoring millions of suffering people.

From the front door of the glass-walled gift shop at the Alnwick Garden in the far northeast of England, the scene looks innocent enough. A sapphire green English lawn slopes gently downward, toward traditional, ornamental gardens of rose and bamboo. Across the small valley, water cascades down a terraced fountain.

But a hundred or so plantings kept behind bars in this castle's garden are more menacing — and have much to tell visitors about poison and the evolutionary roots of medicine.