Issue

Health

In Health, Pulitzer Center grantees delve into some of the world’s most pressing health issues and challenges. Featuring a wide range of topics from chronic illnesses to outbreaks and epidemics to reproductive health and public health systems, our reporting looks at the breadth of health issues found across the globe.

We also look at the global footprint of cancer, which kills more people than HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria combined. We examine the disproportionate burden placed on poorer countries, as well as the medical and business innovations that allow for treatment once thought too costly or too difficult to deliver.

Other projects look at mental health, including the trauma caused by conflicts like the wars in Syria and Yemen, the effects of pollution on communities, and safety and injury-related deaths, such as in our ongoing Roads Kill project.

By telling the stories of patients, caregivers, and scientists, our reporters are drawing outbreak comparisons and providing lessons for prevention. They are also taking on the challenge of communicating technical information to the lay ear, and ultimately filling the gap between the scientific and public understanding of health crises.

Health

From Birth, Death

Standing in the only operating room in the only medical hospital in all of Guinea-Bissau, Marco Vernaschi watched a nurse take an unsterile needle out of her pocket and, without anesthetic, suture a woman's vagina after a difficult childbirth. The woman screamed. Mr. Vernaschi took a photograph. Moments later, she was required to walk out of the filthy room and go home.

She was actually fortunate. So few women have any medical care in the west African country of Guinea-Bissau that the United Nations regards it as one of the world's most dangerous places to be pregnant.

A Deadly Cycle

Jamaica's hard-to-reach and embattled gay community has been ignored by the government's public health program for the last 25 years. Last year, a study revealed that nearly one-third of gay men in Jamaica may be infected with the virus that causes AIDS, but the island's public health response remains paralyzed by homophobia as the epidemic continues its uncontrolled spread through Jamaican society.

Dying for Treatment

Sub-Saharan Africa, the poorest region on Earth, is a place where more than 600,000 women die in pregnancy or childbirth every year due to lack of proper care and only 30 percent of the population has access to health care at all. Photojournalist Marco Vernaschi is documenting the human costs, beginning with this work from Guinea Bissau.

"Grand: The Piece Makes a Wonderful Whole," Wisteria and HOPE Review in the Winston-Salem Journal

Poet Kwame Dawes provided the words for HOPE & Wisteria, two back-to-back performance pieces that explore different aspects of the black experience. But his contribution, vital as it is, is only one part of the puzzle. Each production is a multimedia piece using music, images and Dawes' poetry.

The musicians and singers, performing alongside Dawes on stage, contribute immensely to the power of the production, as do the photographers whose work is projected on a large screen behind the performers.

HIV/AIDS in Jamaica: A Poet Responds

In an interview on The Root, poet Kwame Dawes discusses his role and shares his experience in creating the multimedia project "Hope: Living and Loving with HIV in Jamaica," commissioned by the Pulitzer Center to document the human face of HIV in Jamaica, the country of Kwame's youth.

Learn more about the Emmy-winning LiveHopeLove.com