Long Form

Long Form Journalism by the Bhekisisa Team

Four-month-old Samson Salo receives a dose of vitamin A at the Madamani Dispensary during Malezi Bora.

This costs just cents and could prevent half-a-million children from going blind

The substance is critical in pregnancy and in the development of children; a lack of it has dire consequences.
Health Minister Zweli Mkhize

The National Health Insurance: Can Zweli Mkhize pull this off?

Can the health minister fix our health system and what will it take? Here’s what Mkhize’s character, views and his past...

PrEPing young women for the HIV prevention pill

This tablet can help to protect the country's young women from contracting HIV.
South Sudanese refugee children in northern Uganda

Could this country be among the world’s best for refugees?

Many Ugandans were once refugees themselves. Now, they are 'paying back the good' and making their country one of the best in the world for refugees.
Refugees are at risk of developing mental disorders

‘The baby fell, but I just kept running’

Refugees can flee their countries, but they can't escape the trauma of war.

Life on a hotter earth: Depression, drought & decolonising mental health

As the climate crisis worsens, arid parts of South Africa are expected to get even hotter and even more water-scarce. In...

The long walk back to yourself: How this hospital revolutionised rural rehabilitation

Bhojana Mathunywa was attacked by four men for bag of tobacco. Now, slowly but surely, this team of rural therapists is helping him recover the everyday skills he lost. (Dylan Bush, Bhekisisa)
Undercover: Bhekisisa reporter Pontsho Pilane posed as a pregnant woman considering an abortion at the Amato Centre in Pretoria to learn about the pregnancy counselling it offers.

Pregnant? Need an abortion? Here’s where not to go

Are faith-based NGOs breaking the law when they refuse to give women information on where to terminate their pregnancies?

Teletubbies and friends: Inside the bizarre science behind your child’s favourite show

What makes the world’s most successful children’s TV programmes so addictive – and so strange? Linda Geddes explores the research on...
Are you a good fit for a high-stress job? Take a look at the biology of making it in a fast-paced world of work.

If you possess these 10 qualities, you might be a good fit for a...

Scientists studied soldiers with PTSD and even children who'd witnessed a great tragedy. Did they unlock the secrets of resilience?
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.
It's not only women who prefer Caesarean sections

Caesarean vs vaginal birth: A mother’s choice, not her doctor’s

C-sections may result in fewer lawsuits, but they are not always the best option.
The Finnish baby box was introduced in the 1930s when the country was poor

Would you put your baby in a cardboard box? Check out this parenting trend

The Finns’ cardboard box prompts an African graduate to develop a life-saving device for babies.
​Acid victim Hanifa Nakiryowa founded the Center for Rehabilitation of Survivors of Acid and Burns Violence.

Acid attacks: ‘I didn’t have the money to buy justice, but I had brains...

In the wake of acid attacks, victims — often women — can feel hopeless. Now, women around the world are fighting back.
A girl living with albinism has her eyes tested. A new regional plan by the African Commission on Human and People's Rights calls for the affordable provision of eye care and sunscreen to people living with the condition.

Waiting to disappear: The danger of being too pale

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