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Photographs have the power to inform and engage viewers. Earlier this year, The Lancet invited submissions for Highlights, the publication’s annual photography competition. Highlights 2022 featured 14 winning photographs telling stories from a wide variety of health-related topics that captured the world’s attention in 2022. One of the powerful images selected was from Pearl Gan, OUCRU’s Photographer in Residence.

Making smile, a dental doctor and final year dentistry students volunteer in a dental screening drive in Cambodia © Photo: Pearl Gan; Photographer in Residence, OUCRU

Pearl Gan’s winning photograph featured dental doctors and final-year dentistry students who volunteered in a dental screening drive stationed at Aung Run Primary School in Cambodia. The make-shift dental screening room was a temporary set-up by the non-governmental organisations Catholic Relief Services (CRS) and One-2-One. Here, the school children got their teeth checked and repaired by these volunteer dentists. Since 2019, these dental health screenings have been conducted twice every year by One-2-One with financial support and coordination from CRS’s Healthy Kids Project. The dental programme is one of the joint initiatives led by CRS to support the oral health needs of children from rural and poor communities. The local schools and families greatly appreciate the programme. Pearl Gan credited the CRS Cambodian Team and Dr Suresh Nair, Singapore, for their assistance.

About The Lancet’s Highlights 2022

As in the previous two years, the COVID-19 pandemic continues to feature in the Highlights pictures. This year, images capture the impact of the pandemic on LGBTQ+ older adults and their resilience, celebrate a return to the classroom after school closures, and focus on the importance of childhood vaccination after routine immunisation programmes were disrupted in many low-income and middle-income settings. Other photographs capture the human costs of events this year: the devastating effect of the floods in Pakistan on a young person’s life and the way the economic crisis in Sri Lanka is challenging the health system. There are also images that illuminate the persistence of childhood malnutrition and cholera and the need for access to water, sanitation, and hygiene services for people living in poverty. Other photographs highlight how conflict disrupts crucial health services, celebrate oral health for children in Cambodia, and reflect on planetary health and the environmental stewardship of Indigenous peoples in Brazil.

View the article 'Highlights 2022: sharpening the focus on powerful health stories' on The Lancet website