AEON

Southern Brew — A second hurricane is battering New Orleans, this time it is an HIV catastrophe whipped up by prejudice and poverty

As far as aspirations go, MarkAlain Dery’s might seem strange: giving rapid, mouth-swab tests for human immunodeficiency virus to celebrities. ‘I’ll swab anything I can swab,’ says Dery. ‘My dream is to get L’il Wayne or some other big rapper.’  As he envisions it, the swabbing occurs in front of a large crowd of people, mostly black, who all decide to follow suit.

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For a Song — At the O+ festival, musicians and artists barter their talents for medical care. A new social contract in action? 

At a former hotel in the upstate New York town of Kingston, the makeshift clinic was handling a steady stream of patients. In what was once a lobby, volunteers sat behind long tables to welcome people and guide them to their appointments. Down the hall, in the old ballroom, doctors and nurses checked blood pressure, hearing, vision, and conducted other general health tests. Office dividers separated the practitioners, the appointments made private by shower curtains drawn across the openings. Some clinicians had examination tables, others conducted their exams in chairs. Behind the curtains, doctors listened intently to their patients.

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