Features


Captured, raped, ransomed: The kidnappers preying on teenagers far from home

Sally Hayden

When Ella and her cousin reached a refugee camp in Sudan, it seemed to herald safety. Instead, it was the start of an all too familiar ordeal.


A grim anniversary: Hundreds of clinics close as Trump’s gag rule turns one

Ryan Lenora Brown

Governments and even anonymous do-gooders are stepping into fill the funding gap left by the US decision, but their pockets will never be deep enough.


‘Cancer I could deal with. Losing my breast I could not.’

Joanna Moorhead

For those with breast cancer, a mastectomy may seem like the best option. But Joanna Moorhead is glad she chose less extensive surgery.


Can you think yourself into a different person?

Will Storr

We used to believe our brains couldn’t be changed. Now we believe they can – if we want it enough. But is that true?


Listeria: Follow SA’s medical sleuths as they chase a killer in a race against time

Joan van Dyk

As deaths mount, take an inside look at the detectives working around the clock to solve the country’s medical mystery.


Women forced into sex to pay hospital bills, study says

Kate Hodal

Patients too poor to settle medical debts are chained to drain pipes, starved and abused in health centres across parts of Africa.


Myths and methadone: Will Egypt’s laws bend to the rising tide of drug abuse?

Ati Metwaly

The real revolution is yet to come when it relates to the country’s opioid epidemic.


Curbside counselling? These 'friendship benches' bring mental health closer to home

Ranga Mberi

One in four Zimbabweans suffers from mental illness, but untrained female health workers are setting a new benchmark for the treatment of patients.


'I told them I had a miscarriage. But the nurses knew what had really happened'

Ryan Lenora Brown, Adri Kotze

Go inside the international network of women willing to break the law to give people access to termination of pregnancy services.


#SizaMap: Find a safe, legal abortion near you with this list of designated providers

Bhekisisa team

Until now, the national and provincial health departments have not been able to say where services are provided. Here's how we found them.


When there was no list of free abortion clinics, we made our own. Here's how.

Joan van Dyk

How we found the country's 'missing' abortion providers – mapped contraception services too.


Gasping for breath: Pneumonia's deadly toll

Karen McVeigh

A disease that claims the lives of two children under five a minute worldwide has hit drought-stricken Kenya hard, its spread driven by malnutrition.


Go inside the trucker craze fuelling a blackmarket in dangerous 'sex enhancers'

Tawanda Karombo, Adri Kotze

The products themselves could be dangerous and are likely to encourage high-risk sexual behaviour.


When the tiniest hearts break: Behind SA's shortage of paediatric heart surgeons

Nelisiwe Msomi

The country can't produce its own paediatric heart surgeons. But that may be beginning to change, starting in Cape Town.


How to tell your child you have HIV

Kristen van Schie

More than three decades into the HIV epidemic, some conversations haven't become any easier. This is one of them.


Meeting men halfway: Clinics are going mobile to reach the toughest patients

For decades, we’ve struggled to solve the riddle: How do you get reluctant men to test for HIV. Could we finally have an answer?


This country figured out how to stop teen substance abuse, so why has no one else?

Emma Young

Find out which nordic nation radically cut teenage smoking, drinking and drug use and how they did it.


Modern day slavery: 'The girls trust the traffickers more than anyone'

Bhekisisa Reporters

For nearly three decades, a thriving sex-trafficking industry has been operating between Nigeria and Italy. Can this woman help break the chain?


Raising hope: From street child to mother

Sally Nyakanyanga, Adri Kotze

Abandoned as children, women in Harare are now teaching one another to fight for their futures.


[LISTEN] Marijuana in SA: Is it really legal?

M&G Multimedia

There's a lot of confusion about marijuana in South Africa. Mia Malan sat down with Joan van Dyk to separate fact from fiction.


The ABCs of autism in the classroom: 'He only wants to eat sandwiches with cheese'

Pontsho Pilane

Autistic children experience the world differently, but this doesn’t stop them from learning.


SA gears up to grow medical marijuana

Joan van Dyk

The country may soon begin growing medical marijuana but it will have to meet national guidelines to crack the legal market.


KZN cancer patients sent home with panados as treatment waiting lists grow

Joan van Dyk

State cancer patients have nowhere to turn, even if their cancer is treatable.


'My mom was too scared to check what was wrong. In the end, doctors removed her womb'

Joan van Dyk

Early screening for cervical cancer can be a lifesaver but are nonprofit organisations enough to fill the gap in KZN's crumbling system?


'My neighbour murdered nearly all of my family, but now we are friends'

Amandas Ong

Thanks to a pioneering project survivors and perpetrators of the Rwandan genocide now live side by side in 'reconciliation villages'.


Five things you didn't know about human milk banks

Pontsho Pilane

We take a look at some of the unlikely customers hitting up SA's breast milk banks.


Is DIY HIV testing the latest Cape Town trend?

Kristen van Schie

It starts with a swab but does it end with a diagnosis? Why the trickiest part of DIY HIV testing happens after the test.


'Juju curse' binds trafficked women into sex slavery

Lorenzo Totaro, Annie Kelly

Traditional West African ‘healers’ and Sicilian psychiatrists are struggling to help free Nigerian women forced into prostitution.


A new loo: Gaze into the toilet bowl of the future

Lina Zeldovich

Despite our complicated relationship with it, our poo could one day power our cell phones, tablets and laptops.


Waiting to disappear: The danger of being too pale

Bill Snaddon

Ikponwosa Ero went from a child who felt different to the United Nations’ first independent expert on albinism.