FW: This Year's Jonathan Mann Award Winners
- World health groups to honor two Kosovar doctors for
human rights effort
By Richard A. Knox, Globe Staff, 6/13/2000
r. Vyosa Dobruna says health care in war-ravaged
Kosovo is vastly better than a year ago, when ethnic
Albanian physicians practiced clandestinely and she
narrowly escaped arrest in a predawn raid by Serbian
But last Friday, the 45-year-old pediatrician could
find no clotting medicine for a bleeding patient with
hemophilia. Though she has access to common
antibiotics and vaccines, there is no medicine to
treat rampant tuberculosis or stop epileptic seizures.
Meanwhile, Dobruna's ailing friend, Dr. Flora Brovina,
50, languishes in a Serbian prison following her
conviction last fall on terrorism charges. Her
offense: providing medicine and knitting wool to women
who were allegedly aiding members of the Kosovo
The two physicians are the recipients of the Jonathan
Mann Award for Global Health and Human Rights.
The $20,000 award, to be presented in Washington
tomorrow, is named for a former Harvard AIDS
specialist who died with his wife, Mary Lou
Clements-Mann of Johns Hopkins University, in the
crash of Swissair Flight 111 off Nova Scotia in 1998.
UN Ambassador Richard Holbrooke is scheduled to give
the keynote address at ceremony.
Jonathan Mann, founder of the World Health
Organization's Global Program on AIDS and later the
Harvard AIDS Institute, was a pioneer in linking
disease eradication with the promotion of human
The Kosovar doctors are the second winners of the Mann
Award. Last year, Jimmy Carter presented the first
Mann Award to Dr. Cynthia Maung, who established a
clinic on the Burma-Thai border to care for those
fleeing the Burmese military.
''Doctors Brovina and Dobruna sacrificed their freedom
and risked their lives for the sake of health and
human rights, while the rest of the world waited,''
Dr. Nils Daulaire, president of the Global Health
Council, said in a statement released yesterday.
The Global Health Council cosponsors the Mann Award
with Association Francois-Xavier Bagnoud and Doctors
of the World. The three nongovernmental organizations
promote health and human rights.
Dobruna's selection for the award recognizes her work
in setting up clinics for women and children who are
victims of rape, torture, and psychological trauma,
first in Kosovo and later in Macedonian refugee camps.
She fled to Macedonia in April 1999.
Her imprisoned colleague, Brovina, is a highly
regarded poet who founded the League of Albanian Women
of Kosovo, which organized protests against violence
in the years leading up to the war between ethnic
Albanians and Serbs.
Brovina established a clinic and a shelter in Pristina
to care for both Albanian and Serbian women and
children. Serbian police arrested her in front of her
clinic in April 1999. The Serbian government sentenced
Brovina last November to 12 years in prison for
''terrorist acts against the state.''