Stay-at-Home Female Doctors Serve the Poor Online

Women have been slowly but surely breaking the barriers that have been set for them in the past centuries. A beauty queen with Down’s syndrome made history, single mothers run startup companies, more women are fighting back against sexual harassment and even lead hundreds of people to resuscitate a dead river.

Here’s to another amazing woman. A female Pakistani doctor recognized the odds stacked against physicians in her context, and acted to provide more flexible options for women in the medical industry. Dr. Iffat Aga founded a platform to connect home-based female doctors to poor communities.

Sehat Kahani is a revolutionary tele-health platform that connects at-home, out-of-work doctors who can provide quality health care to underprivileged patients in low and middle-income markets.

The organization currently constitutes a network of 14 facilities across Pakistan which have served more than 550,000 patients. When a patient visits the clinic, a nurse logs their basic medical history, and then doctors are called in to continue the consultation through a video conferencing system.

The percentage of women in local medical schools are higher than those of men, but less than half of these women eventually end up as practitioners because they believe they need to nurture their families first. Because of the responsibility weighing down on them, female doctors stop pursuing their careers.  Dr. Iffat knew this problem needed a solution, so she partnered up with women who similarly understood — and perhaps personally experienced — the crisis, and together they built Sehat Kehani.

With a vision to create an all-female health provider network, Sehat Kahani simultaneously promotes women’s empowerment and entrepreneurship, and the basic need for affordable, quality healthcare in rural and urban communities – all without the doctors ever having to leave their homes.

It is truly an inspirational balancing act to target both the issues of gender inequality and poverty at the same time. Women are not only fighting for their own rights; they are doing so in order to join larger fights.

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Saudi Arabian Cinemas To Welcome Women

Lifting decades-long bans on women driving and entering sports stadiums, Saudi Arabia is taking steps in the right direction. Easing up on more restrictions, the conservative kingdom is now allowing women to enjoy cinemas. 2,000 screens for the first time in 35 years to be exact.

“This marks a watershed moment in the development of the cultural economy in the kingdom. Opening cinemas will act as a catalyst for economic growth and diversification.” [said culture minister Awwad Alawwad.]

While the news is blowing citizens away, the Saudi government still has to consider whether or not to censor films. Segregation is also an issue that remains up in the air, as the change could be too sudden.

“It should be done very gradually. This is a new era for Saudi and a new step for us. This will show the world that we also have an artistic side. We have to keep progressing.”

In an era of social reform, Saudi Arabia can’t afford any mistakes. After all, freedom is a tricky thing.

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