Deeksha Bathini

Deeksha Bathini is a junior studying community health. Deeksha can be reached at [email protected]

Looking for Life, Destroying Life: We need more Farmers

As the end of the semester approaches, I finish up my column “Looking for Life, Destroying Life.” The title, as mentioned in my first column, originates from a famous Haitian proverb. It refers to a woman selling mangoes to make a living. In doing so, she falls off her mango truck and dies. When poor […]

Looking for Life, Destroying Life: Complex humanitarian emergencies

A complex humanitarian emergency (CHE) is a “complex, multiparty, intra-state conflict” resulting in a humanitarian disaster, according to scholar of global health Richard Skolnik. CHEs are multifaceted and pose enormous regional and international threats to security. They are inextricably intertwined with war, political turbulence, lack of food and human displacement, all of which result in […]

Looking for life, destroying life: Turning poop into water

You’ve probably heard of the software tycoon Bill Gates before: Harvard dropout, co-founder of Microsoft, one of the richest people in the world. But to me, some of Gates’ biggest contributions to the world stem from his philanthropy. Bill Gates and his equally incredible partner Melinda Gates are trailblazers in global health. Through the Bill […]

Looking for Life, Destroying Life: When a nine-year-old gets pregnant

Content warning: This article discusses child sexual abuse. “I told my grandmother that I want to study and marry after turning 18. My grandmother said no, and also that marrying would be good for my health … my family is hell-bent on chasing me away from the house … they abuse and curse me every […]

Looking for life, destroying life: Well, shit

Poop. It’s gross, smelly and no one really wants to talk about it. It’s not the kind of heart-wrenching cause that has billionaires ready to drop a few million. But here’s the thing: lack of access to proper toilets has profound effects on the health, economies and well-being of global populations. In public health, this […]

Looking for Life, Destroying Life: The case for gender equality in global health

Healthcare systems are complicated, fragmented and difficult to navigate. There is no perfect delivery system, and countries around the world have explored many possibilities: single-payer, market and socialized. After spending my entire undergraduate career so far studying healthcare, I, too, do not have a solution to the disaster that is healthcare delivery. But I sincerely […]

Looking for Life, Destroying Life: Diseases make a comeback

Elimination is local. Eradication is global. Elimination refers to the decrease of a particular disease to a very low defined target number in a particular geographical region. Eradication, however, is defined as the complete and permanent global reduction of a disease to zero. Think of it like this — elimination is a step to eradication. […]

Looking for life, destroying life: Female genital mutilation, part 2

Content warning: This article includes graphic descriptions of violence against women.  In my last column I discussed the physical, biological and emotional ramifications of female genital mutilation (FGM) and muddled through the gray area of cultural compliance and condoning human rights violations. My stance on this issue is summarized by former President Barack Obama’s statement on […]

Looking for Life, Destroying Life: Female genital mutilation

Content warning: This article includes graphic descriptions of violence against women.  Your mom tells you to go into a room. You walk inside and there are many girls, and an elderly woman is sitting on the floor. She asks you to take off your pants. You comply. The girls and your mother pin you down […]

Looking for life, destroying life: Dracunculiasis

Dracunculiasis is Latin for “affliction with little dragons.” This parasitic infection, more commonly known as Guinea-worm disease, is contracted when a human drinks water contaminated with copepods (water fleas) that contain worm larvae. Usually, the infected person remains asymptomatic for a year. Then, the adult worm begins to emerge out of the host’s skin by […]