IN-DEPTH: Vaginal ring ushers in new era in HIV prevention

IN-DEPTH: Vaginal ring ushers in new era in HIV prevention

A recent announcement about a vaginal ring to prevent HIV has AIDS activists and women’s sexual and reproductive health advocates excited. But where would this ring fit in South Africa’s HIV prevention programme? Amy Green investigates.

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Breakthrough hepatitis C medicines remain in regulatory limbo

Breakthrough hepatitis C medicines remain in regulatory limbo

Over the last decade the treatment of hepatitis C, a virus that can infect and damage the liver, has been revolutionised by a new class of medicines called direct acting antivirals. Catherine Tomlinson investigates the regulatory obstacles that are limiting access to these breakthrough medicines in South Africa.

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COVID-19: The trial and error of digital contact tracing in SA

COVID-19: The trial and error of digital contact tracing in SA

Over four months after the first COVID-19 cases were identified in the country the National Department of Health augmented its approach to contact tracing by adding a new digital component – COVIDConnect. Elri Voigt maps South Africa’s contact tracing efforts leading up to this moment.

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COVID-19: How clinic closures disrupt health services in PE

COVID-19: How clinic closures disrupt health services in PE

The temporary closure of clinics in Nelson Mandela Bay Metro, whenever a staff member tests positive for COVID-19, has disrupted healthcare services at many of these clinics. Luvuyo Mhelwana spoke to some residents attending local clinics and the health authorities in the district and province.

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IN PICTURES: The difference a minister’s visit makes at Livingstone Hospital

IN PICTURES: The difference a minister’s visit makes at Livingstone Hospital

Unhygienic conditions, as reported locally and internationally, at hospitals in Port Elizabeth prompted the Minister of Health, Dr Zweli Mkhize, to make a site visit to  Livingstone Hospital on Wednesday. These striking pictures show the situation at the hospital before and after the visit.

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COVID-19: Alcohol ban will increase ICU capacity, but is not a long term solution – experts say

COVID-19: Alcohol ban will increase ICU capacity, but is not a long term solution – experts say

The reinstatement of the ban on the sale of alcohol may have come as a surprise to many, but evidence suggest that it will have a significant impact on trauma and hospital capacity in the coming weeks. Elna Schütz investigates.

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COVID-19: Solutions proposed as shocking new child hunger numbers revealed

COVID-19: Solutions proposed as shocking new child hunger numbers revealed

Findings from a large survey published today has revealed shocking statistics about the effects of South Africa’s COVID-19 lockdown on child and household hunger. Experts say children may be the pandemic’s greatest victims and the country’s progress towards ending hunger may have been reversed. Kathryn Cleary reports.

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COVID-19: What the pandemic is like for older persons living in poor communities

COVID-19: What the pandemic is like for older persons living in poor communities

Already at an increased risk of serious COVID-19 illness, older persons in poor communities face an additional set of difficulties in staying safe and healthy. Siyabonga Kamnqa spoke to older people, experts, civil society organisations and government authorities on what can be done to protect older people.

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COVID-19: More government support needed for old age facilities – expert

COVID-19: More government support needed for old age facilities – expert

While COVID-19 infections and deaths are rising among those older than 60 years, residential care facilities battle to keep residents safe. Elri Voigt investigates how care facilities are responding, whether they are getting the support they need from government and if the data on the situation in care homes provides a reliable picture.

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COVID-19: How PE waste pickers navigate lockdown and hunger

COVID-19: How PE waste pickers navigate lockdown and hunger

Hundreds of people daily search for recyclable materials to sell and food to eat at Arlington and Uitenhage waste disposal sites in Port Elizabeth. Luvuyo Mehlwana spoke to waste pickers about their fears of contracting COVID-19 from waste and to experts about the risks of this happening.

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COVID-19: How high-flow nasal oxygen is saving lives and sparing some patients the trauma of intubation

COVID-19: How high-flow nasal oxygen is saving lives and sparing some patients the trauma of intubation

Doctors at two of the Western Cape’s most severely impacted COVID-19 hospitals say they have seen positive outcomes from using high-flow nasal oxygen instead of invasive mechanical ventilation. Kathryn Cleary asked doctors at these hospitals to explain how and why this kind of oxygen therapy works so well.

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