SSD Prize handed out at DOK.forum Marketplace 2022!

The Sunny Side of the Doc team attended the DOK.forum MARKETPLACE 2022 to search for new talents and hand out a prize to one of the 45 projects in competition. As we wish to strenghten plurality of voices in the doc industry, we are proud to hand out the SSD Prize to POWER AS PATHOLOGY, a documentary exploring how past outbreaks and global vaccine inequities are empowering African nations to join together to combat COVID-19. The team wins two free accreditations for Sunny Side of the Doc 2022.


POWER AS PATHOLOGY follows the African continent's growing momentum to establish equity in outbreak responses, despite continued exclusion from cutting-edge pharmaceuticals in the face of increasing health security threats. Decades of Global North biomedical research in African nations left little benefit to the continent’s fragile public health systems. However, West Africa stitched a silver lining into their 2014 Ebola response by innovating outbreak responses and improving healthcare systems. Soon after, all 55 African nations formed a united health agency. When the coronavirus pandemic swelled in 2020, unique expert knowledge and memories from the epicentres of previous disease outbreaks proved critical to social responses. 2014 Time person of the year, Mosoka Fallah, reignites community-driven public health campaigns that rolled back Ebola. Africa CDC teams, led by Cameroonian virologist John Nkengasong, test every spectator at African Football’s AFCON final. Senegal rolls out a world-class rapid test network while Nigerian activists message about COVID-19 with art and music. Vaccine nationalism among wealthy nations prompts a united front among African scientists and leaders in decrying unjust global vaccine inequities and in taking action. An African billionaire steps up and negotiates the purchase of life-saving jabs, while South Africa deploys reverse engineering mRNA technology to begin vaccine production. 'Power As Pathology' tracks innovative collaborations to prepare tech transfer hubs, manufacturing sites and distribution networks to supply next-generation vaccines in Africa for Africa.

Director's Statement

As filmmakers, we were struck by how COVID-19 upended long-established narratives that perceive Africa as a hot zone of emerging diseases with the potential to threaten global health security. We are excited to film the story of 55 African nations uniting under one public health agency to stitch a silver lining into their collective COVID-19 experience and implement a public health response tailored to the specific needs of the African continent. 

Sarita West (Director):  


Sarita West founded Alchemy Films in 1994 to write, produce and direct social and natural history documentaries shown on PBS, Discovery Canada, National Geographic Channels and ARTE France. In 2004, Sarita began self-shooting and editing. Sarita is currently post-producing ‘Outspoken’ after completing the development of a documentary supported by the WHO appointed Independent Panel for Pandemic Preparedness and Response.  

Gregg Mitman (Producer):


An award-winning author and filmmaker, Gregg Mitman is a guest professor at the Rachel Carson Center for Environment and Society at LMU in Munich and the Vilas Research and William Coleman Professor at the University of Wis-consin-Madison. He has worked extensively in Liberia over the past decade and is currently leading an ERC Advanced Grant on hot spots, emerging infectious diseases, and the changing landscapes of environment and health in West Africa.   

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