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.
Find out what women go through in India and the United States to access abortion and contraception.

Tales from Trumpland: Health workers will be forced to bury aborted fetal tissue

In the war on women's bodies, the casualties stretch far beyond US' 50 states.
The Gauteng government has three months to pay families affected by the Life Esidimeni tragedy.

Gauteng mental health services: ‘They treated him like you don’t even treat a dog’

A decision by the Gauteng department of health has left at least 36 dead but has the scandal lifted the lid on the horrors of mental healthcare?
Yvette Mbayo-Ndaya has high blood pressure

Refugees ripped off at state hospitals

Poor people who have fled their countries are expected to pay steep rates for treatment at government hospitals in Gauteng.
Malawi's women suffer in silence as the country continues to outlaw abortions but change may be on the horizon.

Will rape survivors finally be able to have legal abortions?

Unsafe terminations in Malawi may be curbed after a new law is enacted, but it’s just the first step
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...
In 1992

This country figured out how to stop teen substance abuse, so why has no...

Find out which nordic nation radically cut teenage smoking, drinking and drug use and how they did it.
Rape survivors from war torn countries need healthcare and support in South Africa

DRC to SA: No escape from rape’s war

Abused women from war-torn countries who have fled to SA for safety often face more maltreatment here.
Scans have been used to compare brain activity between people who took psilocybin

Therapists test psychedelic chaos to cure depression and addiction

Psychiatrists have since turned to antidepressants, mood stabilisers and antipsychotics that aren’t curative.

A new kind of chemistry: Why science is rethinking the humble bed net

Disease-spreading mozzies may be getting wise to our best defences, but science is fighting back.
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?
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.

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...
Man walking on a dirt road in Togo.

Doing the ‘tramadol dance’: What this latest music craze says about Africa’s pill addiction

The illicit trade in this prescription pain killer has become the stuff of ballads and dance halls but its abuse is...
Loveth was trafficked from Nigeria to Italy. Since PIAM was founded

Trafficked to Turin: The Nigerian women forced into sex work abroad in Italy

Thousands of women are lured from Nigeria to Italy annually by the promise of a new life, only to find themselves trapped in the sex trade.
A smoky Port Harcourt street. Doctors have warned of the health-related consequences of the city’s poisonous black soot.

Poisonous haze: Why the air we breathe could kill us

Climate change and air pollution could be conspiring against the continent, and fuelling new levels of death and disease.