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Opinion pieces by Bhekisisa Contributors

Sniper bullets

A slow death: Are Israeli forces instituting a deliberate campaign to maim in Gaza?

There’s something distinctly cynical about Israel’s targeting of people’s legs in Palestine’s march for freedom.
This disease is a leading cause of death in SA but preventing it could be as simple as taking a single pill — if the government agrees.

This kills more South Africans than any other disease. There’s a new way to...

One in four people carry this potentially deadly bug? Now a new shorter treatment can prevent it from making you sick.
National guidelines say babies should get nothing but their mother’s milk for the first six months of life. But fewer than one in 10 women makes it to six months.

‘I thought I’d breastfeed my baby for a year. That dream was short-lived’

We tell moms to exclusively breastfeed. But we don’t tell them about all the things that get in the way of that, including depression.
A hotter earth will affect how we farm

When climate change & health collide: Will SA’s policy have the teeth — or...

Previously, the health department dedicated about R180 000 per year to respond to what is arguably the greatest threat humankind has ever faced.
People queue in makeshift camps following past threats of xenophobic attacks in South Africa. Today

Are foreigners really entitled to free healthcare in South Africa?

Recent national and Gauteng memos demanding all foreign patients pay in full for services likely fell foul of the law.
Could MDMA one day come of the rave scene and into mainstream psychology? Emerging research may be a step in that direction.

Could this drug one day come out of the club and onto your therapist’s...

Ecstasy users are more empathetic than those who take other drugs – even when not on it.
You can't treat what you can't count: No one knows how many people inject drugs in east and southern Africa.

Southern Africa’s missing drug users: We can’t treat what we don’t count

No one really knows how many people inject drugs in east and southern Africa and that's a bigger problem than you think.
Diary of a young

‘HIV is my unwanted pregnancy’

If you are a man who has sex with men, the HIV prevention pill just keeps getting better. Find out how.
Money

Don’t believe the hype: Why increases to the health budget on paper don’t translate...

Legal claims against the department now amount to more than half of some provincial health budgets. Less money now will only mean more claims later.
An 8% above-inflation hike could mean South Africans would smoke 22-million fewer cigarette packs over a four-year period.

#Budget2019: How this could have netted the country 17.1-billion — & saved lives

Find out why Mboweni's R1.14 hike won't be enough to cut smoking, save lives or bring in much-needed cash.
Doctors and nurses were held at gunpoint to stop giving patients treatment.

What to do about South Africa’s unemployed doctors

It’s official. Austerity budgets may be here to stay. Here’s how South Africa should be working with what it’s got to provide healthcare.
The health department has proposed accrediting public hospitals to provide c-sections as a way of improving the safety of the procedures across the country.

This is putting SA’s women in the grave, so what’s health department doing about...

Pregnancy in South Africa is getting safer, but still not safe enough. Here’s what the health department says they’re doing about it.
Faux facts are travelling at lightning speed across the internet and they're bad for your health.

The rise of anti-vaxxer bots: Fake news is going viral — & it’s bad...

How do you outrun a lie when science shows misinformation spreads faster than fact?
It’s 2019 and some clinics and hospitals in this country are still battling for basic hygiene.

Only half of clinics and hospitals in this country meet basic hygiene standards

What if your doctor couldn’t even wash her hands before examining you?
The struggle to survive bringing a new life into the world is still so real for South African women.

‘HIV testing was compulsory. If you didn’t test, they wouldn’t treat you’

The struggle to survive pregnancy and death in a land of plenty and poverty hasn’t changed much in the past five years — there are lives to prove it.
As good as a trainer... well

How to get the most out of your gym membership

Finally, go where you've always feared to tread at the gym with these four tips.