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Opinion pieces by Bhekisisa Contributors

A new online tool lets you calculate your chances of falling pregnant via IVF.

Women can wait up to two months to find out if their babies have...

The world has more than halved the number of babies who contract HIV from their mothers in the last two decades. But in some places, rates of mother-to-child transmission of HIV are rising again and we don’t have a moment to lose when it comes to diagnosing — and treating — babies born with the virus.

From symbols of illness to signs of solidarity: The other disease masks could curb

We now have the chance to use our new mask-prowess to curb the spread of TB as well — but only if we consider keeping masks woven into the fabric of our lives after the COVID pandemic has passed.
Protests by communities

Protests, progress and performance: Here’s what it takes to clean up a provincial health...

In 2018, protests over alleged corruption in the North West health department literally set the province on fire. Cabinet eventually put...

What developing countries can teach the Global North about how to respond to a...

When it comes to leadership and innovation, there's much that industrialised nations can learn.

‘How COVID has affected my mental health as a doctor’

During epidemics doctors face moral dilemmas forcing them to make decisions against their conscience — such as...

Why many South African mothers give up breastfeeding their babies so soon

The long-term benefits of breastfeeding for children’s development led to recommendations for its exclusive adoption for the first six months of...

COVID-19 has increased hunger in SA. So what works best to improve access to...

South Africa’s expansion of social grants during lockdown was a good move — new evidence shows such cash transfers are effective in reducing food insecurity. But the country may need more of these and may also have to increase their amounts.
Most South Africans have the TB germ - so why aren't they sick?

Has our COVID fight crippled our efforts to fight HIV and TB?

During the HIV pandemic, doctors were traumatised by the government’s indifference towards patients’ lack of access to treatment. In the case of COVID-19, some physicians say, they have to cope with the devastating consequences of most of the country’s health resources having been allocated to one disease.

Pills and phone calls: How COVID restrictions forced us to conduct abortions telephonically

COVID-19 forced many people’s jobs online – even for doctors who provide abortions. Read what Marie Stopes learned when they helped nearly 50 patients terminate pregnancies over the phone.

Why COVID-19 vaccines need to prioritise ‘superspreaders’

Controlling the spread of COVID-19 among the young may be a better way to protect the old, these experts argue

This agreement could be South Africa’s answer for an affordable COVID-19 vaccine. But there’s...

When COVID-19 vaccines come onto the market, poorer countries will have to compete with wealthier ones, who can pay more, for access. Will it help if lower and middle-income countries pool their funds and order vaccines in bulk?

The beauty politic: South Africa’s long and complicated history with skin lighteners

Today, South Africa remains the only country in the world to prohibit all cosmetic claims to skin bleaching, lightening or whitening — and we have a blend of Black Consciousness and science to thank for it. But regulation hasn’t totally snuffed out demand for dangerous creams containing toxic chemicals.

Unbanning booze sales: Did we do it the right way?

You can now have a beer at a pub each day of the week. There are no limits to how much...

The preventable trauma of COVID childbirth

A new global investigation has documented, in at least 45 countries, “shocking” and “unnecessary” breaches of laws and World Health Organisation...

COVID-19 has changed the way South Africa’s only toll-free mental health helpline works. Here’s...

When COVID-19 hit, South African Depression and Anxiety Group (Sadag) helplines were flooded with calls. But the outbreak changed more than call volumes, it changed the way SADAG worked. Could the lessons it learned shape the future of mental healthcare in South Africa?

Scientists are working to fast-forward COVID-19 research, but not at the expense of ethics

Two-dozen experimental COVID-19 vaccines are now in human clinical trials, according to the World Health Organisation. It usually takes more than a decade to develop a new vaccine — but just because we’re expediting research to curb the new coronavirus doesn’t mean we can leave communities behind.