Latest News

Op-Ed: Coming to the aid of sex workers
Daily Maverick | 13 March 2016
In the same week that former President Thabo Mbeki stirred emotions with his weekly letter 'seeking to clarify' his views on HIV and AIDS, South Africa launched the national sex worker HIV plan aimed at arresting runaway infection rates in this vulnerable sector of our population.
Gender and eHealth in Kenya
Health Systems Global | 7 March 2016
E-Health or the use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) for health is increasingly being adopted in Kenya to bridge the gap in access to health services, and improve efficiency and governance of the health system in an effort to achieve better health outcomes. In Kenya, a mobile technology revolution is evolving with mobile coverage estimated to be over 80% and internet use through mobile subscriptions 99%. This ubiquitous use of mobile technology and applications has made it...
Five lessons Nigeria learnt when it clamped down on polio
Bhekisisa | 3 March 2016
Success hinges on a number of key factors, ranging from government buy-in to harnessing the support of traditional leaders and civil society. Much of my life has been spent working to eradicate polio, a crippling and vaccine-preventable disease. This was a feat once considered impossible - even just a few years ago, Nigeria accounted for more than half of all polio cases worldwide. But last July, against all odds, we celebrated our first anniversary of being polio-free.A month later, the...
The five principles behind the world’s most efficient health systems
The Guardian | 1 March 2016
One of the greatest conundrums in global health is why so many countries don’t get what they pay for. A relationship between health expenditure and health exists, but is far looser than you might think. Many nations spend a quarter or even a half of what others do for the same or better outcomes.
Admin jobs surge in public healthcare
BDlive | 29 February 2016
The ranks of public healthcare's administrative staff increased 12% in the three years to September last year, even as the number of doctors and nurses flatlined, Treasury figures show. The data are in line with a recent analysis by the Development Policy Research Unit at the University of Cape Town, which found that the government went on a recruitment drive after 2008 in which low-level clerks were among the primary beneficiaries.
A global defence system to fight virus threats is urgently needed
The Guardian | 27 February 2016
The Ebola and Zika epidemics require a coordinated response involving infrastructure, international organisation and readily available vaccines.  A healthy body has three essential systems for staying that way. There is physical fitness, building resilience against threats. There is the brain, to spot danger and take action. And there is the immune system, to neutralise infections that breach other defences. The world needs similar systems to protect against epidemic and pandemic...
National Health Insurance: A wing and a prayer
Financial Mail | 26 February 2016
Government’s National Health Insurance plan (NHI), which has the noble ambition of extending affordable, quality treatment to all, is based on the most dramatic overhaul of the SA health-care system since the ANC came to power in 1994. But how and when it will come to fruition remains an open question, with gaping holes in the policy framework and implementation strategy. The vision, outlined in the White Paper on NHI, is of a health-care system based on the principle of social...
Health-care Inquiry: Medical aids in the dock
Financial Mail | 25 February 2016
Craig Lester, a television freelancer, couldn't control his tears last week when testifying at the competition tribunal's inquiry into the private health sector. Lester described to the panel, headed by former chief justice Sandile Ngcobo, his efforts to care for his seven-year-old autistic son, who needs a cocktail of medication to prevent his attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) from escalating to a life-threatening stage.
HST’s Wellness for Effective Leadership Workshop draws large crowd at DENOSA 2016
| 23 February 2016
Facilitated by Health Systems Trust’s project manager, Ms Sarah Davids, the Wellness for Effective Leadership (WEL) Workshop at the Denosa 2016 Conference in Johannesburg drew a large audience who were keen to learn about this innovative personal development programme.  The workshop helps public health managers to equip themselves with personal and interpersonal competencies to deal effectively with stress in the workplace with the overall aim of improving service delivery. HST...
South Africa: Ten Things You Probably Don't Know About HIV in 2016
All Africa | 22 February 2016
Great strides have been made in the treatment and prevention of HIV over the past 35 years. The HIV world is used to things moving fast, in a way that most medicine just doesn't. The reasons for this are complex, but include: strong research funding, focused and effective activism, and often younger, more dynamic and ambitious health professionals who recognised the inability of modern medical delivery systems to get treatment right.
No cause for panic stations over SA Zika case, says expert
Mail & Guardian | 22 February 2016
Health authorities say the visitor diagnosed with the mosquito-spread virus has recovered and there is minimal likelihood of a local outbreak. The visiting Colombian businessperson who was diagnosed with the Zika virus in South Africa last week is “completely well” and “poses no risk to anybody”, says Lucille Blumberg, the deputy director of the National Institute for Communicable Diseases. Blumberg says the man presented with a mild illness four days after his...
HPV rates drop 64% in decade since recommended CDC vaccination
The Guardian | 22 February 2016
Although human papillomavirus vaccination rates are relatively low in the US, this the first time a study has shown evidence of the effect on women in their 20s. Human papillomavirus (HPV) prevalence is down 64% since the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommended a vaccination for the sexually transmitted infection a decade ago, according to a study released on Monday. CDC researchers said this is also the first time a study has shown evidence of the effect of the...