Tackling Malawi's doctor deficitIPS

BLANTYRE, 23 Apr 2013 - In Malawi, where the healthcare system frequently makes headlines for its shortages of drugs and medical workers, a fact that is often overlooked is that two out of four central hospitals do not have a specialist physician in attendance.

“A lot of conditions are not appropriately diagnosed because they are seen by clinicians who are not aware of the greater spectrum of diagnoses that are possible,” explains Dr. Theresa Allain, associate professor and head of Internal Medicine at the University of Malawi’s College of Medicine in Blantyre. “When things are not diagnosed appropriately, they’re not treated appropriately” ...

Tibetan exiles report high rates of hepatitis BIPS

DHARAMSALA, 19 Oct 2012 - As the Central Tibetan Administration (CTA) works to address some of its more immediate political problems, long-term public health issues have emerged, including high rates of hepatitis B among the exiled community.

But this year, the health department of the CTA, which is based in Dharamsala in northern India, took steps to recognise World Hepatitis Day for the first time on Jul. 28, showing their commitment to reduce these rates ...

Social media activism takes root in MalawiIPS

MALAWI, 13 Apr 2012 - As Malawians celebrate Joyce Banda’s appointment as president on sites, like Facebook and Twitter, the increased use of social media in Malawi comes full circle as her new government takes office.

For it was during the country’s civil society mobilisation against the former government that social media first gained popularity as a platform for airing grievances here ...

Never-ending case arises againIPS

ISTANBUL, 23 Jan 2013 - Pınar Selek, a Turkish sociologist who has on three occasions been tried and acquitted over a fatal explosion in Istanbul more than 14 years ago, is being taken to court again Jan. 24.

On Jul. 9, 1998, seven people were killed and more than 120 injured in an explosion at the historical Spice Bazaar in Istanbul. Selek was implicated as having organised the explosion ...

Kurdish prisoners hungry for freedomIPS

DIYARBAKIR, 13 Nov 2012 - Five MPs from Turkey’s main Kurdish political party, the Peace and Democracy Party (BDP), and the Mayor of Diyarbakır have gone on hunger strike to support a protest by more than 700 Kurdish prison inmates. The prisoners’ hunger strike has now lasted 63 days, and spans dozens of prisons across Turkey.

This comes after fellow MPs Özdal Üçer and Emine Ayna pledged their support to the protest, stating that “the demands of the hunger strikers are our demands as well and we will die for these demands too” ...

Tibet burns, on the backburnerIPS

DHARAMSALA, 6 Sep 2012 - Two Tibetan teenagers set themselves on fire and took to the streets of Aba in southwestern China last week, managing to walk only a short distance before collapsing. They both died the following day.

Since 2009, there have been 51 self-immolations inside of China, as Tibetans protest against increasingly repressive Chinese policies and call for the return of the Dalai Lama, who fled Lhasa, the former capital of Tibet, for India in 1959 ...