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Health

Nancy Wong/Wikimedia Commons, The White House/Creative Commons / WNPR photo illustration

Drug epidemics are not new in the United States. But there’s something very distinctive about the demographics of this latest wave, which centers around opioid and heroin abuse. It cuts across socio-economic and racial divides. 

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Politics plays a role in all sorts of things in life: dating partners, how we think about the economy, and, according to Eitan Hersh, the choices doctors make.

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A new survey of state workers in Connecticut focuses on the experiences of state employees with disabilities.

Logan Prochaska / Creative Commons

Inmates with substance abuse issues face the highest risk of relapse, or fatal overdose, within the first few weeks of being released from incarceration. Research shows that 80 percent of former inmates with opiate dependence issues will relapse within a month of leaving jail. 

Chion Wolf / WNPR

A new investigative report from the Office of the State Child Advocate found "gross systems failures" across several units of the Department of Children and Families and other state agencies in their care of a toddler who almost died while in foster care.

Lance Cheung / U.S. Department of Agriculture

State public health officials have released a list of 14 farms in Connecticut that got tainted beef from a Massachusetts slaughterhouse that is the source of an E. coli outbreak. 

Werner Shutz / Creative Commons

Marie Antoinette's breasts were believed to inspire the design of the shallow French champagne coupes we see on the shelves of the local Pottery Barn. Mae West noted in her 1959 memoir, Goodness Had Nothing To Do With It, that she regularly rubbed cocoa butter on her breasts and spritzed them with cold water.

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

Ken Aligata of the Connecticut Community for Addiction Recovery ran through an inspection of a sober living home in the quiet, picturesque neighborhood of Clinton, Connecticut. Seven people with addiction who are in recovery currently live there, and Aligata wants to make sure it’s a safe environment.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

This hour, as part of WNPR’s week-long reporting series on the opioid epidemic, we explore racial disparities within the context of America’s crack cocaine and opioid crises

Patrick Skahill

Patients and caregivers seeking the opioid-reversal drug naloxone can now get the medication without a doctor’s prescription. That’s thanks to a state law that went into effect one year ago allowing pharmacists to prescribe and dispense the drug. 

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Five million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s disease -- the sixth leading cause of death in this country. There are many caregivers who provide unpaid care for their relatives with Alzheimer’s or other types of dementias -- but it’s not an easy role to fill.

This hour, we explore caregiving and how it can impact a person’s physical and emotional health -- and their finances. 

The federal government has announced a new rule that guarantees the rights of patients and families to sue long-term care facilities.

The rule, released Wednesday by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, bans so-called pre-dispute binding arbitration clauses in nursing home contracts, which require patients and families to settle any dispute over care in arbitration, rather than through the court system.

The rule applies to facilities that receive money from Medicare or Medicaid — which is nearly all of them.

Federal health officials are urging all Americans to get their flu shots as soon as possible, and are especially concerned that too few elderly people are getting vaccinated.

"Flu is serious. Flu is unpredictable," Dr. Thomas Frieden, the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, told reporters during a joint briefing Thursday with the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases. "Flu often does not get enough respect."

Ray Hardman / WNPR

September is Sickle Cell Disease Awareness Month. The rare, genetic blood disorder affects roughly 100,000 people in the U.S., according to the Sickle Cell Disease Association of America. 

Judith Felton

A growing number of community colleges in Connecticut are opening food pantries to serve not only their students, but also part-time faculty and staff.

The carcinogen often referred to as the "Erin Brockovich chemical" is present in about two-thirds of the drinking water across the country, according to water testing data from the Environmental Protection Agency.

Newly released FBI data show the number of murders in the U.S. rose nearly 11 percent last year and violent crime increased by nearly 4 percent, but crime researchers said homicides and other violence still remain at low rates compared with a crime wave from 20 years ago.

Courtesy Adam Berger

When Adam Berger, 29, who has Type 1 diabetes, decided to get a sandwich from a deli, he first ran it by his mobile application ezbds, which he launched in Stamford two years ago.

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Customers on Connecticut’s health care exchange use medical services at a much higher rate than non-exchange customers, according to insurance providers. 

Shaheen Lakhan / Creative Commons

H.M. is one of the most important and studied human research subjects of all time. He revolutionized what we know about memory today because of the amnesia he developed after a lobotomy in 1953 to treat the severe epilepsy he developed after a head injury sustained earlier in life. 

When you shop for cleaning supplies, brightly colored bottles advertise stain-removing powers or "whiter whites." But it’s hard to get clear information about what the chemical ingredients could do to your health or the environment. The Environmental Protection Agency is hoping to change that.

To millions of people in New York on Monday morning, the first word of a suspect in the New York and New Jersey bombings arrived at 8 a.m. with a jarring, screeching sound of their mobile phones.

Screens lit up across New York City with an emergency alert: "WANTED: Ahmad Khan Rahami, 28-year-old male. See media for pic. Call 9-1-1 if seen."

Chion Wolf / WNPR

This year marks an important milestone in our nation's history -- 35 years since the discovery of HIV/AIDS. This hour, we look back to see how far we've come in understanding, treating, and destigmatizing HIV/AIDS in America. 

NIAID / Creative Commons

Nearly 8 percent of adults and children in the United States have asthma, but new Connecticut state data shows that there has been a decrease in asthma-related hospitalizations and Emergency Room visits in many of our communities.

This hour, we learn more about asthma trends in our state and we examine measures our health providers are putting in place to curb the effects of the disease. And later, we check in on how well Connecticut is doing to prevent lead poisoning among children. 

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