All the best health stories from
the Bhekisisa team this week
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When we first floated the idea of the #MeetTheTeam video series, I was sure I could convince Bhekisisa’s editor-in-chief, Mia Malan, to let me do my video with just my voice and an empty chair

I thought it would be terribly artistic… Ok, that’s a lie, I just didn’t want to be on camera

There’s a reason I spent years of my life studying to be behind the camera and not in front of it

Needless to say, that idea didn’t fly, and I reluctantly shot today’s video.

If you’ve ever been interested in what goes into making a Bhekisisa video feature, then give it a watch

You might be surprised to find that our short videos take a lot more effort … and hours than you think. 

I don't like being in the limelight, but I love telling people’s stories.

You won’t find me back in front of the camera any time soon, but if you like what I do — or have ideas that would make for some great videos — you can always hit me up on Twitter @DylanBushZA or drop me a mail at

Happy watching,
Dylan Bush
Senior multimedia journalist

Love our videos? Help keep them free by investing in us for as little as a cup of coffee each month. Click here to support our team.
Our friends at the international science journalism publication, Mosaic, go the distance to find and report the science and health stories that matter.
Most recently, they’ve published on the role of vaping and e-cigarettes in quitting smoking, the damage caused by poorly regulated painkillers in West Africa, and why it’s so hard to stop people dying from snakebite.
To be the first to hear about their new long reads and podcasts, sign up to Mosaic’s newsletter.
Mambas and markets: The bizarre business, or lack thereof, of treating the world’s snake bite problem, via @mosaicscience. Mambas and markets: The bizarre business, or lack thereof, of treating the world’s snake bite problem, via @mosaicscience.
First you met Roxy, then you got to know Joan and before you met Ros, you saw Laura in action. 

Now it's time to meet the person behind all our videos and ironically the most camera-shy of us all here at Bhekisisa — Dylan Bush

They're our video virtuoso who finally got a dose of their own medicine by being the subject of their very own video. Learn how they work.

Watch their video here
Lights, camera, action: Meet the one Bhekisisa team member who might finally be ready for their cameo @DylanBushZA. #HowWeWork Lights, camera, action: Meet the one Bhekisisa team member who might finally be ready for their cameo @DylanBushZA. #HowWeWork
Have 5 minutes? Take our short NHI survey.

Help us gauge public participation around the National Health Insurance, freely and anonymously.

If you’d like to add your voice, take five minutes to complete our 12-question survey. The survey also allows civil society members to upload their submissions to the NHI and whether or not they would like these to be made public.

While the survey is anonymous, we plan to analyse and publish the overall results on our website, and make the anonymous dataset available publically. Submissions marked for public consumption will be made available on our website as well as via The centre would like to thank our civil society reviewers who helped us draft and refine the survey questions

So add your voice to the nearly 100 members of civil society and the public who have chimed in with suggestions about how to make the road to an NHI a little better!

The deadline for input is 5 December
Click here to complete the survey
Help @Bhekisisa_MG gauge the quality of public participation around the National Health Insurance #NHI. Complete the five-minute survey here: Help @Bhekisisa_MG gauge the quality of public participation around the National Health Insurance #NHI. Complete the five-minute survey here:
We'd like to give a warm Bhekisisa welcome to our new subscribers!

Yogan Pillay, Deputy Director-General of the National Department of Health
Bridgid Strachan from the United Kingdom
Rumbi Chakamba from Botswana
Celeste Nxumalo from Namibia
Centre For HIV-AIDS Prevention Studies Parktown from Johannesburg
Thomas Shibambo of the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development
Koena Ngooepe of the National Planning Commission
Mark Ritchie of Global Minnesota

Like our newsletter? Forward it to your family, friends or colleagues so they can sign up themselves.

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Opportunities from around the web:

Strategic information adviser, UNAids — Johannesburg

UNAids seeks to appoint a strategic information adviser to be based in Johannesburg.

The adviser will work with the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency to strengthen the integration of sexual and reproductive health rights (SRHR), HIV and sexual gender-based violence services in East and Southern Africa. 

The adviser will provide technical support, establish integrated SRHR clinics with a task-shifting approach and standard curricula developed to train community healthcare workers to deliver services, among other duties.

The ideal candidate will have a degree in social or medical sciences, epidemiology and behavioural surveillance, public health and/or demography. Internal candidates must have at least nine years' experience, which will be considered an equivalent.

Deadline: 6 November
Find out more

Medical officer, Society for Family Health (SFH) — KwaZulu-Natal

The SFH, a South African affiliate of Population Services International (PSI) seeks to appoint a medical officer to be based in uMgungundlovu and Harry Gwala districts in KwaZulu-Natal on a fixed-term contract.

SFH concentrates on HIV issues and uses social marketing to motivate behavioural change regarding consistent condom use, HIV testing and other prevention behaviours.

The officer will be responsible for theatre operations, client medical screening, safety coordination, adverse events management and mobilising and outreach activities.

The successful candidate will have a bachelor of medicine, bachelor of surgery and experience in voluntary medical male circumcision. All candidates must be registered at the Health Professions Council of South Africa.

Deadline: 30 October
Find out more

Call for registration, International AIDS Conference — San Francisco and Oakland

Registration has been opened for the 23rd International AIDS Conference which will take place from 6 to 10 July 2020.

Next year's Aids Conference will mark the first time the world's largest conference on HIV and AIDS will be hosted in two neighbouring cities.

Conference registration has opened two months early to allow delegates more time to apply for visas.

Early registration ends on 15 January 2020. Group registration only applies to five or more people and the organisation requesting a group registration must nominate one group representative who will administer the group booking.

Media registration is free for eligible members of the media who will be attending in their capacity as journalists, photographers, videographers and community educators.

For more information about visa applications, click here.
To register, click here.

Advocacy officer, Sex Worker Education and Advocacy Task Force (Sweat) — Eastern Cape

The non-governmental organisation, Sweat, seeks to appoint an advocacy officer to be based in East London, Eastern Cape.

The officer will be responsible for advocacy and engagement with stakeholders and players in the district around the needs of sex workers and the programme's implementation. 

The successful candidate will have a social science degree with a minimum of two years' experience in lobbying, advocacy, human rights or HIV.

All candidates must have experience in sex work programming and conducting trainings. 

Deadline: 25 October
Find out more

Meta-Research for Transforming Clinical Research, What should we change in the way we are doing research, 25 November 2019 — Paris

Organised by the Methods in Research on Research (MiRoR) consortium, this meeting will look at meta-research, for instance, within preclinical studies as well as opportunities for data sharing, including within the pharmaceutical industry.

Other subjects to be discussed include tools and strategies to increase the replicability of studies and new approaches to evaluate researchers. Registration is free, but seats are limited.

Click here to find out more

Public lecture: Harnessing the Immune Response — To measles elimination and beyond, National Institute for Communicable Diseases — Johannesburg

The National Institute for Communicable Diseases will be hosting Melinda Suchard on 4 November at 5.30 pm as part of the Poliomyelitis Research Foundation's 14th James HS Gear Memorial Lecture. 

The talk will take place in the James Gear Auditorium.

RSVP by emailing Irma Latsky or contact them on 011 555 0395

Call for public comment, National Health Insurance (NHI) Bill — deadline extended

The Portfolio Committee on Health invites stakeholders and interested parties to submit written submissions on the NHI Bill now before 29 November.

The objective of the Bill is to achieve universal access to quality healthcare services in South Africa as per Section 27 of the Constitution. 

As part of this, the Bill sets up the creation of an NHI Fund and outlines its powers, functions and governance structures. The Fund will be used to strategically purchase healthcare services on behalf of citizens and certain categories of foreign nationals to ensure the equitable, effective and efficient utilisation of its resources.

Deadline: 29 November
Click here to submit your comment
For any inquiries email Vuyokazi Majalamba or call her on 021 403 3770 or 083 709 8522

PS ICYMI: Our recent story about the quality of public participation made some major waves. Now, we've created a survey to help put some numbers behind the narratives.

Take a couple of minutes to take our 12-question survey and help us gauge the level of public participation around the process and possible ways to improve it.

While the survey is anonymous, we'll publish the results on our website, at the end of the submission period. They will also be made available on We will not include submissions marked as private in the results.

A special thank you to our civil society reviewers who helped us draft the questions!

Call for Applications, Emerging Voices for Global Health (EV4GH)

Young health systems researchers are encouraged to apply for this mentorship programme. During the course of the programme, successful candidates will receive e-coaching as well as in-person training on topics such as scientific presentation, networking and communication. Fellows will then participate in the Sixth Global Symposium on Health Systems Research in Dubai in November 2020.

Deadline: 6 February 2020
Find out more 

Call for papers, BioMed Central (BMC)

Submissions are now open to contribute manuscripts to the following journals: BMC Public Health; Environmental Health; Environmental Sciences Europe; Globalization and HealthMicrobiome and One Health Outlook.

The theme across all journals is environmental justice. Papers should shed light on the contribution evidence-based research can give to develop better practices and policies towards stronger environmental justice.

Submissions can include but are not limited to research on air pollution, sewage management, water systems management, drinking water quality and pesticides.

Deadline: 1 November
Find out more

Call for abstracts, Health Systems Trust

Abstract submissions are now open for the 2020 edition of the South African Health Review (SAHR). The coming edition's theme is equitable healthcare for people with disabilities in South Africa.

The Health Systems Trust is seeking abstracts providing fresh insights into health systems strengthening efforts for equitable healthcare for persons with disabilities. Preference will be given to manuscripts that take into account the complexities and opportunities for developing and sustaining inclusive health systems, especially in the context of universal health coverage.

The review will represent an evidence base which can be used to strengthen health systems and services to inform future policy development in South Africa.

Deadline: 31 October
Find out more

Call for female experts in any field, Quote This Woman+ — Various locations

Quote This Woman+ is a project to establish an online database of women and non-binary experts to improve gender representation in sourcing among the media. During the election season alone, Quote This Woman+ fielded more than 500 calls from journalists wanting to increase the voices of women in the media.

Keen to be quoted? Submit your details to

Deadline: N/A
Find out more

Have something to say or an opportunity to share? Let us know. Email tip-offs, comments or story and opinion suggestions to 

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The Bhekisisa Team
Copyright © 2019 Bhekisisa Development Media NPC. All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:
Bhekisisa Centre for Health Journalism, Metal Box
25 Owl Street, 4th Floor, Braamfontein Werf, 2092, Johannesburg, South Africa

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