Debt counselling: no quick fix

The provision in the National Credit Act to assist overindebted people to restructure their debt through debt counselling was not designed as a punitive measure -- nor as a measure to enable debt-stressed people to borrow more money to pay off debt.

A boost for nurses

Lack of qualified human resources in the African healthcare arena continues to hinder poverty reduction and development, opening up further potential for computer-based learning models on the continent. A case in point is Kenya, where almost 90% of the country's nurses are trained at the lowest “enrolled” status.

Premier platform for business networking

The third annual Pan African Health (PAH) Congress, which takes place from September 18 to 19 at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg, is billed as the premier platform for business-to-business networking in Africa's healthcare industry. The key components of this year's congress are a conference, a business-to business (B2B) networking forum and the second Absa Healthcare Initiative Awards.

Facing the Aids challenge

South Africa's presidency presented a challenge to Stellenbosch University towards the end of 2000 -- to develop a programme that addresses the HIV/Aids pandemic. So was born the postgraduate diploma in the management of HIV/Aids, which has now been accepted as a model for the African continent.

Destigmatising and treating mental illness

Celebrating 12 years of mental health and advocacy this year, the South African Depression and Anxiety Group (Sadag) is Africa's largest and most recognised mental health initiative. Noteworthy among the accolades it has achieved was a substantial grant from the World Bank Development Marketplace in 2003.

A healthy partnership that works

Absa's social investments stand in the context of its wider role in all the societies in which it operates. The Absa Healthcare Initiative Awards, to be held for the second time this year, are a major component of the 2007 Pan-African Health Congress.

A big corporate commitment to fight HIV/Aids

In 1999 global pharmaceutical and healthcare company Bristol-Myers Squibb and the BMS Foundation made what to this day is the largest corporate commitment to fight HIV/Aids in Africa. This came through the launch of Secure the Future: Care and Support for Women and Children with HIV/Aids. The programme is a $150-million investment, with projects in 12 African countries.

Palatable operations

Repairing cleft lips and palates of children from disadvantaged communities is one of the specialised services offered by Johannesburg's Netcare Park Lane Hospital, which has earned international recognition for the facilities it offers to mothers and infants.

A golden opportunity to fight disease

Responding effectively to the HIV/Aids and tuberculosis epidemics is a challenge for companies such as gold producer AngloGold Ashanti for business and moral reasons. The burden of both diseases in the local mining industry is high. Similarly, the high incidence of malaria in the company's Africa operations calls for effective interventions.

A caring environment

Providing palliative care for patients who have been diagnosed with a terminal illness calls for special levels of devotion and compassion -- qualities offered by Ladybrand Hospice in the Free State. The hospice provides relief from suffering and distress when illness has reached the stage where continued medical treatment can no longer provide a cure. Patients are assigned a home-based carer.

Planning ahead to curb multidrug-resistant TB

A multifaceted international partnership programme to combat the growing multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) pandemic is well underway, with a five-year project strategy until the end of 2011 also being developed within South Africa. In 2003, global pharmaceutical giant Lilly launched the Lilly Multidrug-Resistant Tuberculosis Partnership project.

Giving kids a reason to 🙂

In a world of escalating bad news about crime, poverty, violence and ill health, one project has generated good news, provided hope and turned the tide -- the Cipla Medpro Miles for Smiles Foundation. The foundation challenged two extreme athletes to participate in a radical event of their choice to capture the attention of all South Africans.

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