Health

a blue water well
Let Ideas Compete / Flickr, Creative Commons, https://flic.kr/p/7VkN8Y

Researchers from UNC Chapel Hill and the nonprofit RTI international want to study the prevalence of lead in private wells in Wake County.

The green map shows the distribution of North Carolina’s  health outcomes, based on an equal weighting of length  and quality of life. The map is divided into four quartiles with less color intensity indicating better performance.
County Health Rankings & Roadmaps

The more money you make, the better your health outcomes. That's according to new data released Wednesday by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute.

UNC at Greensboro

Guilford County and The University of North Carolina at Greensboro have created a community-engaged response to the opioid problem.

A nurse performs her work at a community health clinic.
Sabin Institute / Flickr/Creative Commons, https://flic.kr/p/ooK2xw

 

As the Trump administration continues to chip away at Obamacare, many public health practitioners are left wondering how the changes will affect their clients. The statewide sexual health non-profit Shift NC has voiced particular concerns about how the administration’s policies could affect underserved teens and adolescents.

At least seven people have died from flu complications in North Carolina, according to health officials.
Mike Mozart / flickr, Creative Commons

State health officials said Thursday that 12 people died from the flu in North Carolina last week, pushing the record death toll in 2017-18 to 276.

In this July 21, 2017, photo, hog waste pond pumping equipment is seen adjacent to hog houses at Everette Murphrey Farm in Farmville
Gerry Broome / AP

Terry "Pap" Adams says he was out in the backyard, tinkering on one of his car projects, when another cloud of noxious pinkish-brown mist drifted overhead. The droplets hit his wife's black car, leaving blotches with greasy little dots in the center.

UNC Health Care CEO Dr. Bill Roper, left, and Atrium Health CEO Gene Woods in August, 2017.
UNC Health Care

UNC Health Care and Charlotte-based Atrium Health called off a proposed partnership.

In August, the sides announced plans to join clinical, medical education and research resources. On Friday, they broke off those talks.

UNC Health Care CEO Dr. Bill Roper, left, and Atrium Health CEO Gene Woods in August, 2017.
UNC Health Care

There appear to be more disagreements than initially thought in a proposed combination of UNC Health Care and Charlotte-based Atrium Health – formerly Carolinas HealthCare System.

In August, the massive health care systems announced a plan to "join their clinical, medical education and research resources ... with the goal of entering into final agreements by the end of the year."

canned food
Liz Schlemmer / WUNC

More than 12 percent of Americans experience food insecurity and many depend on food banks to make it through a year.

The Wolf Law Library / Flickr, Creative Commons, https://flic.kr/p/8gB6Lx

American kids are bombarded with ads for sugary, processed food and drinks, and for many poor families, those are all they can afford. That's why researchers from Duke Clinical Research Institute say public health efforts to halt the childhood obesity epidemic have failed.

Dr. Tanya Coakley, center right, talks with Brad Huff, right, about a study she's conducting while Brad's son Drew Huff, 10, gets his hair cut by Percell McCain owner of Razor Line Barbershop in Greensboro on Saturday, February 17, 2018. Dr. Coakley, a pr
Madeline Gray / For WUNC

Antonio Pickard is a father of seven, including four boys, ages 13 to 18. He may not have the answers to all of his sons’ questions, but he wants them to be prepared in at least one area: sex.

a boy hiding his face
Suzanne Tucker / Courtesy of the Children's Home Society of North Carolina

North Carolina doesn't have enough school nurses or counselors, and that's impacting child health across the state. The North Carolina Institute of Medicine and the advocacy group N.C. Child gave the state "D" grades for school health and mental health on its Child Health Report Card.

child drinks soda
Staff Sgt. Matt McGovern / U.S. Air Force - Commons

Researchers have long been aware of a link between exposure to violence and obesity in adolescents. Now a new study is untangling some of the reasons that connection exists.

The study used smart phones to monitor adolescents in California and North Carolina. It tracked their exposure to violence and subsequent activity levels, fatigue, and consumption of fast food and soda.

Image of study assessment for young kid
Carolina Institute for Developmental Disabilities

There's a lot of noise on the Internet about how to support and teach children with Autism. The National Clearinghouse for Autism Evidence and Practice has been working to cut through it by offering in-depth analysis of reliable research for teachers and families.

photo of a man in a congregation, praying
Courtesy of Pastor Ronald Godbee

When Dr. David Casarett asks patients with a terminal illness what they would like to do with the time they have left, some stare blankly back at him. Others have a big list of family members they want to spend time with and to-do list items to check off.

Fayetteville Police Department Captain Lars Paul shows a naloxone injectable kit and a naloxone nose spray Fayetteville police use to reverse opioid overdose.
Raul Rubiera / For WUNC

A national health insurer is pledging to help North Carolina fight the opioid epidemic.

The Aetna Foundation announced Tuesday it's giving $1 million dollars to the nonprofit North Carolina Harm Reduction Coalition to purchase the opioid overdose reversal drug naloxone. The organization will then distribute the drug in rural parts of the state.

Ryan Melaugh/Flickr Creative Commons

A new public health report from ECU shows that the death rate for midlife whites in the state increased 6 percent from 2000 to 2013. Many of these deaths can be attributed to so-called diseases of despair, like suicide, drug overdose and liver disease caused by alcoholism.

Photo of prescription bottle and pils
Eric Norriss / Flickr Creative Commons

Jeffrey Halbstein-Harris had already beat addiction twice by the time he was in his 30s. But a doctor assured him that the opioids he was prescribing for Halbstein-Harris’s diabetic neuropathy were both effective and non-habit forming. Nevertheless, Halbstein-Harris became dependent and went through a painful withdrawal process.

Steve Pollard, of  Jackson Springs, N.C., hurt his back while on the job about five years ago. Now, he works in IT but pain medication is still a big part of his life.
Ben McKeown / For WUNC

Steve Pollard lives in Jackson Springs. It's in rural North Carolina near Pinehurst. About five years ago, Pollard hurt his back while on the job for a NASCAR team.

At least seven people have died from flu complications in North Carolina, according to health officials.
Mike Mozart / flickr, Creative Commons

More than 1,200 patients at WakeMed Health and Hospitals have tested positive for the influenza virus this month.

Photo of the seven widowed fathers in the group
Courtesy of Dr. Justin Yopp

Two psychiatrists at the North Carolina Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center work closely with patients near the end of their lives – and with the family members left behind. Throughout their careers, Dr. Donald Rosenstein and Dr. Justin Yopp have supported many young widowed mothers whose husbands passed away, but they noticed there were far fewer resources for widowed fathers who were raising children alone.

Frank Allison, the UNC-Chapel Hill Collegiate Recovery Initiatives Program Coordinator
Jason deBruyn / WUNC

Walk down Franklin Street in Chapel Hill on a Friday night and you're sure to run in to groups of college kids having a good time. For many, drinking is a part of the college experience. For some, however, drinking can lead to more serious problems, including opioid abuse.

Fayetteville Police Department Captain Lars Paul shows the naloxone nose spray the Fayetteville police use to reverse opioid overdose.
Raul Rubiera / For WUNC

The drug naloxone has become key in saving lives from opioid overdoses. It’s such a vital tool for fighting the opioid epidemic that many law enforcement officers in North Carolina now carry it with them at all times.

Men drinking beer.
Max Pixel / Max Pixel - Creative Commons

Women live longer than men in many countries around the world. In the United States, women outlive men by an average of five years. Scientists have long attributed this divide to genetics and biology, but a physician at Duke University is posing an alternative theory: toxic masculinity. 

man preparing injection
Carol E. Davis - US Army Corps of Engineers / Flickr - Creative Commons - https://flic.kr/p/axqcCi

The American medical system is good at providing care to people in the middle: those who need regular doctors’ visits and a few medications. But the system is inadequate for many patients with complex needs. And although they make up a tiny proportion of healthcare users, these high-need patients end up using a shockingly high percentage of health dollars.

Dr. Francis Aniekwensi is a partner at Beckford Medical Center. In Warren County, a primary care desert, Aniekwensi is working to improve health conditions for the more than 10,000 patients who frequent the three Beckford clinics.
Christine Nguyen, The Daily Dispatch / For WUNC

The National Institutes of Health has awarded $7.2 million to the REACH Equity Center at Duke Health. Research shows that minorities often receive poor-quality health care.

infant sleeping
Andrés Nieto Porras / Wikimedia Commons -2017

Doctors at fertility clinics often recommend women test their ovarian reserve to see how many eggs they have left. While the test can show how long a woman has before menopause, it was also commonly used to evaluate women’s likelihood of naturally conceiving. 

Courtesy Raymond Barfield

For most of his life, Raymond Barfield was a person of faith. He grew up in the church and maintained his faith right up to his early years as a physician. But his time working as a pediatric oncologist pushed him to the limits of his emotional and spiritual capacity.

A picture of a sale sign in front of a home.
myguysmoving.com / Flickr, Creative Commons

North Carolina's insurance commissioner has rejected a proposed 18.7 percent increase on home insurance rates.

UNC Hospital
Dave DeWitt / WUNC

Healthcare in North Carolina is a tale of corporate giants in which business moves have major spillover effects on access and quality of healthcare for millions of residents. 

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