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Opinion: No better news on World TB Day

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — A year and a half ago, I attended the seventh birthday party of a young boy named Fanyana, who was quarantined at the Sizwe Hospital in Johannesburg, South Africa due to his extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis. Fanyana's tuberculosis is virtually untreatable, and when I returned to Johannesburg this past fall, he remained in quarantine.

Romanian prisons fight spread of TB, HIV

JILAVA, Romania — Communist Romania was a vast den of spies and paranoia, with thousands locked up inside one of Eastern Europe’s cruelest prison systems. Twenty years later, prisoners land behind bars for different reasons, but they still have much to fear.

Full Frame: A cruel disease

Full Frame features photo essays and conversations with photographers in the field. Tuberculosis can be a cruel disease, stripping people of their ability to live happy, productive lives, and whose chain of consequences extends from patients to their families and communities.

TB in Mumbai

Jordan weighs sterilization of disabled women

AMMAN, Jordan — Though they’ve been close allies for sometime now, Jordan and the United States have an unlikely common ground. Groups in both nations are working to stop the sterilization of intellectually disabled women. Around the world, families are having doctors remove the uteri of their mentally disabled daughters. While there have been a handful of widely publicized cases in places as far-flung as the United Kingdom, Jordan, India, and the U.S., for the most part the procedures are performed without discussion, even among disabled rights groups.

South Sudan's "Lost Boys" return home

DUK PAYUEL, Southern Sudan — When her labor pains began, Alang Majok, 16, got somebody to drive her for two hours through the African bush to reach the Duk Lost Boys Clinic. Samuel Juma Malual, the facility’s clinical officer, heard a knock on the door of his mud hut at 1 a.m. and was roused out of bed. Majok was in labor for eight hours before she delivered a 6-pound baby girl on Dec. 1.

Opinion: Let's make clean blood a priority

NEW YORK — A crucial item is missing from America’s health care debate: our blood supply. It is easily contaminated, in chronic shortage and it goes bad more quickly than milk. The good news is that there is new technology that addresses those problems. The bad news is that it isn't available in the United States.

Canadian health care has a dirty secret

TORONTO, Canada — Near the end of the Winter Olympics, the premier of the small province of Newfoundland made a much-anticipated appearance at the Vancouver Games. Danny Williams arrived straight from Florida, where he had gone in early February for heart surgery. It was his first public appearance since igniting a national debate about the quality of Canada’s health care by opting for surgery south of the border. He looked healthy and tanned.

Quakes and disasters: How to help

BOSTON — To find out about the emergency response to the earthquake in Chile and how the world responds to disasters and longer-term health problems, GlobalPost talked to Marie-Noelle Rodrique, the deputy director of operations for Doctors Without Borders/Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF). How is Medecins Sans Frontieres responding to the earthquake in Chile?

The lepers of India: Still untouchable

NEW DELHI, India — When 20-year-old Arjun Nair's father discovered that he had contracted leprosy, he was so afraid of transmitting the disease to his sons that he immediately sent Arjun and his brother away to a hostel school run by missionaries. Some 10 years later, Arjun is back in Delhi, his education still incomplete, and his job prospects dim. “Originally, the school offered classes up to 12th standard,” said Arjun. “But they had a lot of problems with fights breaking out between the older kids, so they sent the older kids back home.”
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