4 ways to make it easy to take the HIV prevention pill
The Aurum Institute is making it easier for people to access HIV prevention medication.Their project includes a screening tool and support groups, and has already reached over 100 000 people.
3 ways COVID sped up SA’s medicine approvals process — and how it can...
During the COVID-19 pandemic, the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (Sahpra) was forced to speed up its review of new medicines such as vaccines, while still ensuring that they were safe and effective.
Life Esidimeni should have fast-tracked – not frozen – SA’s mental health plans
The Life Esidimeni tragedy was the worst possible outcome for a move away from psychiatric care, but well-managed community-based mental health care is still a proven way to treat people’s mental illnesses with dignity.
Pushing up daisies – by becoming compost? How you can choose a greener death
Mainstream methods of burial need to be left in the past as they take a toll on climate change. According to researchers, leaving the body to naturally break down its organic matter until a heap of soil is all that’s left, should be more accessible.
A plea to parents: Listen to trans kids, not moral panics
The moral panic arising from unproven concepts such as rapid onset gender dysphoria (ROGD) has made trans lives unliveable. Despite the lack of scientific evidence, ROGD has bolstered claims that coming out as trans during adolescence is a sudden unhappiness about your birth-assigned gender brought on by a social trend.
‘Add human rights defender to your resume’: How Tlaleng Mofokeng uses medicine to treat...
When doctors treat women as people, rather than a collection of organs and ailments, the practice of medicine can be a powerful tool to restore people’s dignity.
What the field of psychology owes Black patients
Psychological research has mostly focused on white people. New research shows, however, that mental health support works better when it’s adapted to suit people’s cultural context.
The oldest trick in Big Tobacco’s playbook nearly derailed SA’s TB conference. Here’s why
The Foundation for Professional Development, one of South Africa’s oldest nonprofits and the main sponsor of the TB conference in Durban, accepted a R2-million research grant from an organisation that’s widely regarded as a front group for Philip Morris International.
This three-legged potjie doesn’t wobble. NHI lessons for deep rural South Africa
For years, this mother in the rural Eastern Cape had to travel across a river and walk for two hours to get to a clinic. Then, her community teamed up with a nonprofit and the provincial health department to change that. These days, the furthest she has to walk to get her newborn to a nurse is five minutes.
The minister & the metaphor: A patient’s guide to legal medicine imports
Medicines for some cancers and rare diseases will never be considered an “essential medicine”, which means the health department will never buy it for state facilities. Many patients have burned their hands trying to save money by importing such drugs illegally.
How do you stop a hospital heist? Appoint a plunder-proof board
The way South Africa’s health sector is governed leaves hospitals exposed to corruption. Hospital chief executive officers are political appointments, and so are the people at the accountability bodies and regulators such as the Office of Health Standards Compliance that are set up to hold the executives responsible. Independent hospital boards must play this role instead, writes this expert.
A junior doctor’s battle to keep death at bay for state patients
One in four South African medical students show signs of depression, and most doctors are at risk of burning out. Read about one state doctor’s road to hell and back again.
Why doesn’t SA use this bargaining chip when it makes deals with drugmakers?
A two-monthy HIV prevention injection could be too expensive for the department of health to buy even though the country participated in drug trials...
Would you screen yourself for cervical cancer at home?
When South Africa introduced self-tests for HIV, far more people knew their status and were put on treatment. The same could happen for cervical cancer, argues this cancer advocate, and the country already has the networks, testing capacity and funding in place to make a project like this work.
The cruel collusion that devastates young doctors learning how to deliver babies
Health workers-in-training say they feel forced to abuse birthing patients as part of a dark rite of passage on the road to becoming a doctor or midwife. This final year medical student explains how these experiences can shape the country’s future doctors.
Karoo dust, diet & diabetes: Why ‘lifestyle disease’ is an unfair label
Diabetes is different from other non-communicable diseases, this author says. It can’t be spread in a literal sense — instead, it is often forced upon people by factors beyond their control. What happens when you have no say on your genetics or all you can afford is processed food?