Long Form

Long Form Journalism by the Bhekisisa Team

End of the road: Ntombizodwa Matthews was wheeled put of Mafikeng Provincial Hospital in April because the facility had no staff to care for her. A month later she was buried.

Who killed Ntombizodwa Matthews? Politics, protest & corruption in the North West

A month after she was wheeled out of a North West hospital in a barrow, Ntombizodwa Matthews met her end. Her family blames politics for her death.
West African footballers practise at a ground in Naya Bazaar

Football’s dashed hopes: The teenagers sold a Premier League lie

They thought they were signing up for a dream but it turned out to be a trafficking nightmare.
Social media has become a breading ground for racism and other harmful behaviour.

Black? A woman? Read why you’re more likely to be a victim of online...

Are social media algorithms designed to prey the mental health of women and people of colour?
Titoia Kisemei has called the Kajiado District Hospital's manyatta TB ward home since she was diagnosed with the illness. The innovative units are aimed at helping members of the nomadic Maasai adhere to months of TB treatment.

These hospitals have become a home away from home in the Maasai’s fight against...

When TB strikes, the fight to live can come at the cost of a way of life for the country's nomads. This could help ease the pain.
Many school learners can’t afford sanitary pads. But an organisation in Rwanda is working with the country’s banana farmers to change this.

What do your period and bananas have in common? Find out

In Rwanda, schoolgirls can now buy locally produced, cheaper sanitary towels
This is Simon Antindi

Meet the doctors: Take a look at this country’s first crop of homegrown physicians

Finally capping its own medics, the country must now retain them and coax them into rural areas.
Postpartum psychosis

My descent into postpartum psychosis – and how I got out

A new mother recounts how psychiatric care that nurtured her bond with her baby helped heal her mania.
Meet Julius. Studies have shown that he can sniff out about 42% more TB cases than the average lab technician can detect with an ordinary microscope.

Angelina Jolie takes on her biggest role — as a TB-sniffing rat

Angelina might just have saved a life. But is there science to prove it?
A high proportion of Egypt’s population is blind or visually impaired but this does not stop them playing football. The ball rattles as it moves

Football like you’ve never seen it: On the pitch with this blind soccer team

Blind football represents hope and belonging for Egypt's one million visually impaired.
Studies suggest rheumatic heart disease affects 25 in every 1000 South Africans

Penicillin shortages as pharma companies eye newer, more lucrative drugs

Older antibiotic staples are no longer moneymakers. But as modern bugs evolve to outwit them, very few new drugs are ready to take their place.
Bianca Jonkers* was gang raped and the free Vimba! app puts helped her access counselling and care.

‘I would have killed myself’: Free app puts care at rape survivors’ fingertips

In Diepsloot, Bhekisisa's Vimba! app is helping rape survivors access life-saving care and treatment.
Bridging the gap: Pupils at the Emerald Hill School for the Deaf learning sign language. The majority of deaf people in Zimbabwe reportedly cannot read or write.

Hospitals introduce sign language to bridge gap between the deaf and care

Some hospitals are introducing sign language to help deaf patients.
Dire working conditions pit doctors' rights against those of patients

Will strikes pit the rights of doctors against those of their patients?

The quest for better working conditions leaves striking doctors with a tough decision but they might not have to choose.
Zimbabwean doctors went on strike in February for more money and more posts. In 2008

How to fund a failing health system

Could Zimbabwe's new Health Development Fund rescue the country's cash-strapped clinics and hospitals?
Inside the 'dead zone': In an outdoor laboratory at Texas' Sam Houston State University

Afraid of death? Take comfort that you’ll live on in varied and surprising ways

Most of us would rather not know what happens to our bodies after death. But that breakdown gives birth to new life in unexpected ways.
Loud and clear: A billboard in Lilongwe

Malawi to halt prosecutions against LGBTI community

Malawi says it will no longer enforce anti-homosexuality laws but dangerous homophobia persists on the country's streets - and in its clinics.