Azania Mosaka hosts Discover Healthier - a podcast that tells stories of inspirational people and shares thoughts of specialist guests. Join the conversations and build your understanding of health conditions, healthcare cover, living a healthier life and innovations that benefit our future wellbeing. Each episode offers something new, useful and entertaining. Keep listening as Azania weaves dialogues filled with expert knowledge and the awe-inspiring work of our country’s healthcare heroes.
The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted how important thriving healthcare systems are. A number of South African public sector doctors at the COVID-19 frontline are recipients of grants from the Discovery Foundation. Azania talks to Obstetrician and Gynaecologist - Prof. Salome Maswime, and Nuclear Medicine Physician - Dr Dineo Mpanya, to hear all about the ways in which their work has been influenced by Discovery Foundation’s support. And, Azania chats to Dr Vincent Maphai, chairperson of the Discovery Foundation, to explore how the Foundation has, since 2006, invested a staggering R261 million to support 473 medical specialists and institutions in many parts of the country. The aim is to invest over R300 million towards specialised healthcare services over 20 years.
In her role as Head of Corporate Sustainability at Discovery, Ruth Lewin has made it her mission to apply Discovery's expertise, intellectual capital and corporate network in such a way that her team has redefined corporate social investment as we know it. Ruth and Azania delve into examples of several brilliant projects and initiatives funded by Discovery, and how the funding models at play have created lasting partnerships, for maximum benefit of the people each initiative serves.
In Sepedi, “Hlokomela” means “to care”. And, that is exactly what the Hlokomela healthcare project does for low-income employees on farms, in nature conservation and tourism in Limpopo and Mpumalanga. Azania chats to Hlokomela’s founder, Christine du Preez, to find out just how this award-winning HIV and AIDS educational and treatment programme has been running successfully for 14 years, reaching an estimated 25 000 people annually. Azania also speaks to Head of Corporate Sustainability at Discovery, Ruth Lewin to find out how Discovery has partnered with, and funded Hlokomela to expand the project’s services. Then, Azania is joined by Wits University’s Dr Jacqui Miot to find out the results of research commissioned by The Discovery Fund to explore Hlokomela’s remarkable success and how this can be applied at scale.
Dentist, Dr Sabelo Mngomezulu, grew up herding cattle, expecting to drop out of school and work on the mines. Today he has pristine dental rooms at Mosvold Hospital and his patients access a standard of dental care they never imagined possible in a rural area. Azania’s interview this UYDF graduate is exceptionally moving. As a student, Dr Mngomezulu made a poor decision to defraud UYDF. This almost cost him his career. How did he get back on track and make amends?
Then, Azania chats to a medical student, in the thick of the challenges that come with university life and finishing his degree. Dumisani Mthembu is currently completing his 6th year of medicine and, without the support of UYDF’s mentorship programme and funding from Discovery, he would have found himself on a very different path.
She is a medical officer, chair of the Rural Doctors Association of South Africa, an UYDF graduate and trustee, as well as a princess of the Nxumalo royal clan. Dr Lungile Nxumalo’s passion for rural healthcare knows no bounds. And, it all started with the support she received from UYDF. She shares her remarkable story with Azania.
Young people in rural areas usually attend under-resourced schools and end up working on mines or herding cattle. What would happen if they could finish school, go to university and return as qualified healthcare professionals (many of them medical doctors) to turn local hospitals into institutions of healthcare excellence? Unheard of? The Umthombo Youth Development Foundation (UYDF) has, since 2001, made this scenario a reality. Azania interviews UYDF founder, Professor Andrew Ross (he is also Principal Specialist in Family Medicine at the University of KwaZulu Natal) and UYDF’s Student Manager Ntombi Mkhize.
Raising healthy children is one of the toughest challenges facing today’s parents. That’s why this podcast is a must-listen for parents and caregivers of children and young teens. Azania speaks to three experts - paediatrician, Dr Hanneke Heyns; Principal clinical specialist and Head of Research at Vitality South Africa, Dr Deepak Patel; and specialist child and adolescent psychiatrist, Dr Wendy Duncan. They share brilliant insights and tools to navigate a child’s physical, mental and emotional wellbeing both now and into adulthood.
For many moms, pre- and post-natal depression (also called perinatal depression) and other mood disorders, make the process of a growing and caring for a baby a very challenging time. The truth is that a mother’s mental and physical health are intricately linked to her baby’s health. Specialist psychiatrist Dr Bavi Vythilingum, shares key insights with Azania about how moms might better understand their emotions, and how to support a mom who is struggling to cope.
We have started to develop a good idea of why the period from conception to age two is the most critical time for the development of a person’s mental, physical and emotional potential. Now Developmental Paediatrician, Dr Reneva Petersen, takes it further and tells Azania more about all that is needed to optimise mom’s health a baby’s development before and after birth.
Are you planning or expecting a baby? How well do you understand the concept of “The First 1000 days”? This is a window of phenomenal opportunity to determine a child’s mental, physical and emotional potential for the rest of its life. Azania talks to psychologist Katharine Frost to explain it all to us. Katharine is also Executive Director of The Ububele Educational & Psychotherapy Trust.
To really determine the health of a business, we must take a holistic view – one that includes the health of its employees. Their health determines their productivity and a company’s growth and potential. Every year South Africa loses billions of rands to absenteeism and a huge proportion of that is linked to employees falling mentally or physically ill. How do corporate organisations combat these losses? Azania talks to Employee Wellness experts Nonkululeko Pitje (Discovery’s Head of Employee Health Solutions) and Dr Tshidi Gule (founder of the Medispace Lifestyle Institute) to explore these dynamics and the holistic solutions that boost employee wellness.
Azania interviews two brave young women – Gugu Masondo and Dr Nokukhanya Khanyile – about their personal journeys through mental illness. Each has a unique journey, one that led them to connect and start public conversations aimed at demystifying mental illness and addressing the stigmas faced by those who suffer from mental health conditions.
Azania speaks to the dynamic Dr Sebolelo Seape, a psychiatrist whose passion for empowering others towards a deep understanding of mental illness and mental health knows no bounds. She practices in Parktown and Soweto, is presently the Chair of PsychMg, and also the President-elect of the South African Society of Psychiatrists (SASOP). She serves on multiple advisory boards and strives to teach us all about mental health through her frequent radio and television appearances around this theme.
Have you ever felt sad or down, found it hard to concentrate, had excessive fear or worry? Ever had mood changes with highs or lows, significant tiredness and maybe withdrawn from loved ones? Have you ever felt unable to cope with daily problems and stress or turned to substance abuse to get by? If you have concerns about your mental health, you’re not alone. Azania interviews Dr Noluthando Nematswerani (Discovery Health's Head of the Centre for Clinical Excellence) and Cassey Chambers (Operations Director at the South African Depression and Anxiety Group - SADAG) to explain mental illness and its management in a way that’s accessible to us all.
Laetitia du Plessis is a brave, passionate and accomplished woman. She is also super-fit and strives towards ever-healthier ways of fuelling her mind and body. Be moved and inspired as Laetitia opens up about her lifelong struggle with depression and bipolar disorder and explains ways in which she supports her therapy and medical treatment with a regime of super-healthy lifestyle habits. What are her secrets to health and thriving?
When her beloved husband Gugu passed away on Mount Kilimanjaro three years ago, South Africans all mourned alongside Letshego Zulu. Now, Letshego chats to Azania about what it takes to overcome significant loss and the strain on mental health that follows a period of extreme stress. How did exercise, healthy eating and other spiritual and mental lifestyle habits get Letshego through?
Our mental health is absolutely fundamental to our overall health as it affects how we think, feel, and act, how we handle stress, relate to others, and our resilience, optimism, determination and ability to grow. You will be amazed to know that a range of simple lifestyle habits can supercharge your mental wellbeing. Azania finds out all you need to know from Professor Renata Schoeman (psychiatrist and head of the Healthcare Leadership MBA at the University of Stellenbosch Business School) and Dr Seranne Motilal (Clinical Wellness Specialist with Discovery Vitality; clinical doctor with a diploma in mental health and a Master’s degree in Public Health from Harvard).
For survivors of gender-based violence (GBV), fear and shame are overwhelming emotions that may prevent them accessing the help they need and deserve. In an eye-opening conversation Azania chats to attorney Lindsay Henson (Lawyers against Abuse) and Trauma Counsellor Lana Snoyman to explore the rights available to survivors of GBV and to the support needed to overcome the trauma they endure. Azania also hears all about legal remedies available to survivors of GBV and the role that the justice system has to play in turning the tide on this form of crime.
South Africa has one of the world’s highest gender-based violence (GBV) rates in the world. Now, #DiscoverYourVoice against GBV by listening to Azania Mosaka’s interview with survivor of GBV, Mara Glennie, who started the TEARS Foundation to provide a support network for survivors of rape and abuse, underpinned by technology that is available to us all. And, Azania chats to Service Executive at Discovery Health, Raffaella Ruttell to find out more about Discovery’s #DiscoverYourVoice initiative which encourages Discovery Health Medical Scheme members who experience GBV to reach out for help and to access immediate and confidential trauma support and scheme benefits.
Did you know that South Africa has one of the world’s highest gender-based violence (GBV) rates in the world? President Cyril Ramaphosa has said that, in 2020, our country is in the grip of two pandemics – COVID-19 and violence against and killing of women and children. #DiscoverYourVoice against GBV and be inspired by Azania Mosaka’s interview with Sasha-Lee Olivier, our dynamic and passionate reigning Miss South Africa. As a survivor of sexual abuse she is driving the #ItsNotYourFault initiative and using her platform to obliterate the fear that, in the aftermath of GBV, prevents survivors from speaking out.
Seemingly overnight, businesses both large and small have found themselves navigating an unprecedented operating environment with profound impact on employees. What sort of support do South African businesses need to assist employers and their management teams in formulating and executing an effective response to COVID-19? Azania chats to Nonku Pitje, Head of Employee Health Solutions at Discovery, to dig deeper into what Discovery is doing to support South African businesses and their people through this extraordinary time.
When 33-year old Matshepo Matlejoane, began to feel unwell in March 2020, her anxiety about contracting COVID-19 escalated. However, as she tells Azania, access to a free online doctor consultation started her on the path to wellness. Whether you’re tech savvy or not, this offering makes it easy to talk to a doctor from the comfort of your home. In fact, all South Africans have access to free COVID-19 online doctor consultations, thanks to Discovery’s partnership with Vodacom. Ana Endres, Head of Discovery Healthcare Services and GP, Dr Sudeshan Govender tell Azania why this is another brilliant example of Discovery Health’s efforts to limit our exposure to COVID-19.
Are you concerned about contracting COVID-19 but having nowhere to self-isolate, away from loved ones? That’s exactly how Eugene Roux felt when he contracted a serious form of the illness. Thanks to Discovery’s partnership with a leading local hotel chain, Eugene was able to recuperate in a designated isolation facility where all his needs were met. He shares his remarkable recovery story with Azania. She also chats to Discovery Health’s Chief Commercial Officer, Dr Ronald Whelan and Founder and Managing Director at The Capital Hotel & Apartments, Marc Wachsberger, to find out what it takes to turn a hotel into a COVID-19 isolation facility.
The COVID-19 pandemic has driven home the importance of access to the right medical cover and healthcare support. Azania interviews Chris Jones, Head of Technical Marketing for Discovery Health, about brilliant innovations in Discovery Health and Discovery Health Medical Scheme’s coordinated response to the challenge of the global COVID-19 pandemic, such as the innovative WHO Global Outbreak Benefit. Find out all you need to know about how Scheme members and broader society are feeling about Discovery’s enhanced support.
Hear all about current digital healthcare services and what tech and other developments mean for consumers and providers. We chat to Discovery Health’s Dr Jonathan Broomberg and Dr Ryan Noach about how cutting edge medical technology is improving service and care. Then, we take a walk through a healthcare practice that is fully digital – and patients love it.Download Transcript.
In part two of our investigation into Antimicrobial Resistance we cross to experts located in the UK and the US. We explore the global challenge of antimicrobial resistance with Lord Jim O’Neill. And, Dr Tom Patterson shares his chilling story of surviving a deadly superbug, thanks to his wife, Prof Steffanie Strathdee, and an innovative treatment made possible by the global scientific community.Download Transcript.
This two-part podcast in an eye opener about using antibiotics and why they could stop working in the future. In part one we talk about you and the flu, and get some startling research insights on antibiotics.Download Transcript.
This fascinating podcast episode brings complete understanding to the symptoms, risk factors and complications of heart disease - facts that everyone should know. Listen as Azania Mosaka sheds light on early warning signs, high blood pressure, stroke, the role of cholesterol and more. Azania’s in discussion with Dr Noluthando Nematswerani, Dr Nqoba Tsabedze and behavioural scientist, Jane Ball who talks about the fascinating science behind the health-related choices we make.Download Transcript.
Azania Mosaka explores every aspect of what it means to go to hospital. She chats to Jean Slabbert about being diagnosed with neuromyelitis optica – a condition that saw him spend 203 nights in hospital, over a two year period. Then, we explore all you need to know about the hospital journey - from using networks to what to do when you go for a day procedure or longer hospital stay, and those services that make your hospital stay easier.Download Transcript.
“Debunking diabetes” gives you a complete understanding of an often silent condition. Learn all you need to know about preventing type 2 diabetes, and understand the symptoms and complications of this illness. Tony Calitz shares his brave journey through type 2 diabetes with Azania Mosaka. She also chats to the experts - Dr Noluthando Nematswerani, Dr Sundeep Ruder and behavioural scientist Jane Ball, who sheds light on the amazing science behind the choices we make.
A medical aid is similar to a “stokvel”. People contribute and agree to the rules and benefits. Similarly, in a medical scheme, the money in the pool pays for health claims. What can you do to manage costs and why are young, healthy people important in a scheme population? Dr Jonathan Broomberg, Shivani Ranchod and Deon Kotze unpack healthcare costs, how medical schemes work for you, how waste and fraud affect costs, medical aid rules and premium increases. Listen now.