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· May, 2009

Stories about Health from May, 2009

Russia: Bloggers’ Memories of Soviet Maternity Hospitals

Last year, Sinisa Boljanovic translated a number of heartrending childbirth stories, written anonymously by Serbian women and posted on the "Mother Courage" award-winning site, launched and maintained by Serbian blogger Branka Stamenkovic/Krugolina Borup. This month, LJ user germanych, a Russian blogger, asked his readers to share experiences of giving birth in the Soviet Union. While Branka Stamenkovic's "Mother Courage" initiative is an attempt to change the situation for the better, the Russian blogger's goal has been to document a lesser-known chapter of the Soviet history.

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East Timor: Thoughts on Abortion A Few Days Before Law Approval

  30 May 2009

A heated debate about the provisions of a new draft penal code pertaining to abortion is taking place right now in East Timor. If the law is passed, abortion will become a crime and those who perform it will be punished with 2 to 8 years imprisonment, even in cases of incest or rape. The blogosphere reacts, Timorese women raising their voices and questioning why the more pressing issue of underage prostitution is not being debated instead.

Jordan: King Goes Undercover

Jordan's King Abdullah visited the Health Ministry's Patients’ Affairs Department in disguise to see what services were being offered to citizens seeking treatment. Naseem Tarawnah jots down his thoughts on the visit in this post.

Serbia: Torture or Therapy?

Last week, on May 21, a short film about torture in the Spiritual Rehabilitation Center "Crna Reka," located in south-western Serbia, was shown on the web site of Vreme, a Serbian weekly magazine. The patients of this center are drug addicts and its head is Branislav Peranovic, a Serbian Orthodox priest. Nearly all Serbian media have shown the horrible scenes from the short film, in which Peranovic is shown beating one of the patients brutally with a spade and with his fists. Sinisa Boljanovic reviews Serbian bloggers' responses.

Bahamas: Flooding

  28 May 2009

Weblog Bahamas republishes an article which addresses the serious impact of flooding on the island.

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Peru: Freezing Temperatures in Puno Result in Children Deaths

  28 May 2009

While much of Peru and the media has been discussing the 16 confirmed individuals with AH1N1 virus, very little has been mentioned about the 133 children that have recently died as a result of the freezing temperatures affecting the southern part of the country. Bloggers have been noting this difference in coverage, and have been criticizing the lack of planning by local and national governments for what has been become an annual tragedy.

China: Chinese study abroad students not welcomed back

  28 May 2009

Some local netizens are criticizing students returning from abroad for bringing swine flu back home. Fauna from ChinaSMACK translated a conversation between students studying abroad and local netizens on the antagonistic sentiment brought by the swine flu.

Singapore: First swine flu case

  28 May 2009

The dreaded and deadly Influenza A (H1N1) virus has arrived in Singapore already. The city state confirms it is treating a patient who tested positive for swine flu.

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USA: The battle over medical marijuana

  27 May 2009

In the United States, 13 states currently allow citizens to use marijuana for medicinal purposes, but even these limited rights are under threat. In response, many Americans have created blogs to support and extend the legalization of marijuana.

Honduras: First Confirmed Case of H1N1 Patient

  27 May 2009

The first case of the H1N1 virus has been confirmed in Honduras. However, Janpedrano notes that the 9-year-old girl, who is no longer showing symptoms, was “officially presented” alongside her parents, President Zelaya and the Health Minister [es].

Japan: Ministry of Health posts YouTube video

  26 May 2009

Kotori Piyopiyo praises the progressiveness of the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare for posting a video on YouTube and observes with irony that they have turned off the embedding function. The video introduces preventive measures for swine flu.

Influenza A(H1N1) cases in Southeast Asia

  24 May 2009

Several Southeast Asian countries have confirmed that some of their citizens have tested positive for Influenza A(H1N1) infection. The region is no longer swine flu-free. Bloggers react as the virus continues to spread from one country to another.

Zambia: Final thoughts on HIV discrimination case

  23 May 2009

The postponement of HIV discrimination case in Zambia is surprising: So the only reason for the postponement was that the lawyer assigned to the case from the Attorney-General’s office was unable to come to Livingstone from Lusaka for the trial today. A few reasons why I find this surprising. First,...

Trinidad & Tobago: Sulphur Story

  22 May 2009

As news breaks about the presence of excessive sulfur in the aviation fuel being used to refuel aircrafts in Trinidad and Tobago, This Beach Called Life criticizes the government's downplaying of the situation, saying: “If a company is making something as important as aviation fuel and does not have a...

South Korea: Banning Suicide

  22 May 2009

To counter growing group suicides in the nation, the South Korea government decided to ban keywords related to suicide and block access to Web sites. More from Gusts of Popular Feeling

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Philippines: Storytelling for Hunger Awareness

  21 May 2009

A few years ago, a short film won the public's approval at the 56th Berlin International Film Festival, and to this day, it is still making its rounds through internet, raising awareness on poverty and hunger. Chicken Ala Carte by Ferdinand Dimadura is one of the videos we bring you today about hunger past, present and future.

About our Health coverage

Juhie Bhatia is the Global Health editor. Email her story ideas or volunteer to write.


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