Health & Science

Bonnie's Bus
Courtesy of West Virginia University School of Medicine

A mobile mammography center known as Bonnie’s Bus is on the road again and taking appointments in West Virginia this month.

The bus will visit Martinsburg in the Eastern Panhandle May 17 and 18.

A few months ago, Kourtnaye Sturgeon helped save someone's life. She was driving in downtown Indianapolis when she saw people gathered around a car on the side of the road. Sturgeon pulled over and a man told her there was nothing she could do: Two men had overdosed on opioids and appeared to be dead.

"I kind of recall saying, 'No man, I've got Narcan,' " she says, referring to the brand- name version of the opioid overdose antidote, naloxone. "Which sounds so silly, but I'm pretty sure that's what came out."

www.stmarysdoc.com/ / St. Mary's Medical Center

The acquisition of St. Mary's Medical Center by a hospital in West Virginia has been made official.

Cabell Huntington Hospital board of directors Chairman Dr. Kevin Yingling says the hospital finished the final steps of financing and paperwork to complete the acquisition of St. Mary's Medical Center.

U.S. Army photo

A nonprofit organization established by a two-time survivor of childhood cancer is donating iPads to children's hospitals in West Virginia.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, we hear from detainees and soldiers who were held or worked in Guantanamo Bay Detention Center; the latest on new tariffs for steel and aluminum imports; and we hear how a new study found a link between drug overdose deaths in the U.S. to an increase in organ donors.

Wade Payne / AP Photo

The Pfizer Foundation has awarded a $500,000 grant in West Virginia for rehabilitation services for drug-addicted mothers and their newborns who are born dependent on drugs.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, West Virginia chef-journalist Mike Costello appeared on CNN’s Parts Unknown. Costello talks about that experience, plus what he’s working on for 100 Days in Appalachia. Also, in this episode, we hear about a multi-state outbreak of Hepatitis A infections in the Ohio Valley  linked to the region's addiction crisis.

Wikimedia Commons

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, two years ago, for our Struggle to Stay series, we began following two apprentices with a job-training program called Refresh Appalachia. The program is teaching Crystal Snyder and Colt Brogan to farm, while also helping them go to college. On this weekend’s episode of Inside Appalachia, we’ll look back on the challenges Colt and Crystal faced at work, and in their personal lives. Roxy Todd caught up with Colt and Crystal earlier this year at a Refresh Appalachia work retreat, to hear how things are going at work, and what their plans are after graduation.

Kids in Charleston play soccer at the 25th annual Healthy Kids Day while volunteers from the WV State football team supervise on Saturday, April 21, 2018.
Kara Lofton / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

At the YMCA in Charleston, friends Jaidyn, Ceaira, Shayla and Tyra have just gotten down from the mobile rock wall. They’re all 12 and are a little giggly about being back down on the ground.

“My favorite part of today was climbing that rock wall because -- that was scary,” Tyra said.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, politically, the Ohio Valley is known as Trump Country. But even in this politically conservative area, most members of the U.S. Senate say the special counsel investigating President Trump should be allowed to complete his work. As Jeff Young reports, opinions differ on a bipartisan bill to protect the special counsel from being fired.

West Virginia Legislative Photography

A task force subcommittee has chosen 22 locations across West Virginia to hold public hearings on an insurance program for West Virginia teachers and other public employees.

A public outreach subcommittee of the Public Employees Insurance Agency task force met Thursday in Charleston. It chose the communities for the meetings later this spring, and the staff of the governor's office would schedule dates and meeting places.

Doctor, Health, Doctor with tablet, Doctor with iPad
Public Domain Pictures

A health department spokesman in West Virginia says more than 20 cases of acute Hepatitis A have been confirmed in Kanawha and Putnam counties since January.

The Kanawha-Charleston Health Department says in a news release that the recent cases are linked to a multistate outbreak.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On the latest episode of WVPB’s podcast Us & Them, host Trey Kay puts an episode they produced back in 2015 under the microscope. The episode featured a conversation between West Virginian Karl Priest, a retired public school teacher, and physicist Christopher Keating.

When this show was originally released, some listeners thought Trey handled the whole thing badly. So he went back to see where things went off the rails.

Prescriptions, Pills, Drugs, Prescription
U.S. Air Force

Drugmakers would be required to identify the legitimate need for controlled substances to justify their production under a proposed rule intended to rein in the diversion of drugs for illicit purposes.

The Drug Enforcement Administration announced the proposed rule change Tuesday.

Drugs, Drug abuse, Drug overdose, overdose
Pixabay

Cabell County is leading West Virginia in the number of fatal overdoses for the second year in a row.

Citing state data, the Charleston Gazette-Mail reports 909 people died of drug overdoses in West Virginia in 2017, an increase from the previous record of 887, set in 2016. Overdose deaths seemed to slow during late 2017, though the state Health Statistics Center says that could be due to reporting delays.

Dollar Photo Club


More than 40 people were arrested in Huntington this week on drug and gun charges in a sweeping joint investigation targeting accused interstate drug traffickers in what officials called a "turning point" for the city -- and "in the war against the opiate nightmare." 

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, Kentucky ranks in the top five highest number of drug overdoses in the country. It also has one of the highest of Hepatitis C, and while HIV/AIDS cases are declining the U.S., Kentucky holds steady with new cases. Much of this can be traced back to people who use IV drugs, using needles or syringes to inject opioids.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, a new investigative documentary dissects how public health officials and environmental regulators at both the state and federal level handled the 2014 chemical spill, which left hundreds of thousands of people without potable water.

Jessica Lilly / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

A federal report says the wall that crushed a miner to death in West Virginia earlier this year wasn't properly supported.

Leah Hill, a behavioral health fellow with the Baltimore City Health Department, displays a sample of Narcan nasal spray in Baltimore.
Patrick Semansky / Associated Press file photo

On a Baltimore street corner, public health workers hand out a life-saving overdose antidote to residents painfully familiar with the ravages of America’s opioid epidemic. But the training wraps up quickly; all the naloxone inhalers are claimed within 20 minutes.

Dollar Photo Club

Health officials said the rate of babies born dependent on drugs has increased dramatically in West Virginia during the past five years.

In releasing county-level data for about half the state Wednesday, the Department of Health and Human Resources said in a news release that the statewide rate for neonatal abstinence syndrome, or NAS, was 50.6 per 1,000 live births last year.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, for many teens, the prom is the epitome of their high school experience. But for LGBTQ students, it can be a challenge to feel like they belong. So this year, some West Virginia students decided to start a new tradition. Molly Born reports.

Courtesy Office of the Surgeon General

  U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams threw his support behind syringe exchange services as an important tool to address the Ohio Valley’s high risk of needle-borne disease associated with the opioid epidemic.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, after Russian-backed hackers probed election-related systems in at least 21 states in 2016, election officials, whose focus traditionally on making sure polling places run smoothly and efficiently, now have to focus on protecting their computer systems. Although West Virginia wasn’t targeted in 2016, the secretary of state’s office is teaming up with the National Guard to take precautions. Dave Mistich takes a look at the partnership, which is paving the way for secure elections in the digital age.

Mackie Branham views a lung X-ray with Dr. James Brandon Crum, who was among the first physicians to note an uptick in black lung diagnoses
Howard Berkes / NPR

The American College of Radiologists, a professional organization representing radiologists, is asking Kentucky to repeal a new law that changes how coal miners receive benefits for black lung disease.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, in an effort to get more people who are addicted to opioids into treatment, the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources has awarded a $260,000 grant to the Prestera Center to establish a team in Kanawha Valley that visits overdose patients and tries to convince them to get into treatment.  That program is the second of its kind in the state. Kara Lofton take us to Huntington where West Virginia's first quick response team was launched in December.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, the Ohio Valley’s opioid crisis has given rise to a new health threat: the region now has some of the nation’s highest risk areas for outbreaks of needle-borne disease such as HIV. Health experts say a needle exchange is a good defense, but exchange programs face public opposition. That was the case in Bourbon County, Kentucky, where local officials had twice rejected the idea. As part of the Ohio Valley ReSource series “Rural Risk,” Mary Meehan visited the county as people again considered a needle exchange.

Canabis Oil Medical Marijuana
Adobe Stock

West Virginia’s state treasurer says he’s seeking guidance from the U.S. Treasury secretary as he seeks solutions for collecting funds from the state’s medical marijuana program.

Mary Meehan / Ohio Valley ReSource

Greg Lee, Kentucky’s HIV/AIDS educator, starts the town hall on a somber note.

“How many people in this room know someone who has died of an overdose death?”

It is a standing-room only crowd. Most hands go up.

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