health care | Connecticut Public Radio
WNPR

health care

Courtesy: Live Well

About 75,000 people in Connecticut live with dementia. And in a stage production in Hartford, five of them are telling their stories. To Whom I May Concern is a readers-theater style performance – and part of an effort to invite those living with cognitive change to educate others about what they’re experiencing. 

TBEC Review / Wikimedia Commons

Doctors and public health officials are still trying to figure out the cause behind more than 800 lung injuries related to vaping that have been reported in the U.S. in recent months.

At the same time, there is a longer-term public health crisis as more and more young people have become addicted to nicotine through e-cigarette use -- despite decades of declining traditional cigarette use among teens. 

This hour, we talk about these two public health crises. Do you vape nicotine products like Juul, or maybe use THC cartridges or vape pens from a dispensary? Has the current outbreak in lung injuries changed your vaping habits?

A new set of analyses published Monday in the Annals of Internal Medicine challenges the widespread recommendations to cut back on red and processed meats.

RYAN CARON KING / Connecticut Public Radio

A Superior Court judge has dismissed a parents’ lawsuit against the Connecticut Department of Public Health over the release of school-level vaccination data.

Brian and Kristen Festa, of Bristol, challenged DPH’s decision to release school-by-school vaccination data in May. The report also included the percentage of kids with religious and medical exemptions at each school.

Nicole Leonard / Connecticut Public Radio

 

Gov. Ned Lamont held a private meeting at his residence in Hartford Wednesday with New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo to discuss policy and plans around transportation, cybersecurity, economic ventures, marijuana regulation and more.

High up on the list of concerns shared by the two governors is the nationwide outbreak of serious lung illnesses that may be related to vaping.

Stephen Ausmus / U.S. Department of Agriculture

A second person in Connecticut has died from Eastern equine encephalitis, a virus passed on from mosquitos, said state officials Tuesday.

According to the state Department of Public Health, the victim was an adult resident of Old Lyme who became ill during the second week of September and later tested positive for the rare mosquito-borne illness.

Chion Wolf / Connecticut Public Radio

A phone conversation between Donald Trump and the president of Ukraine about former Vice President Joe Biden has sparked outrage from some U.S. lawmakers and amplified calls for Trump’s impeachment. This hour, Connecticut U.S. Rep. Jim Himes joins us to weigh in on this unfolding situation. 

Philippe Put / CreativeCommons.org

Women in America die more frequently from complications of childbirth than in any other industrialized nation in the world. In addition, women of color are three to four times more likely to die than white women. And over the last 25 years that the maternal mortality was rising in America, other countries were decreasing their rate. 

Vaping360 / Creative Commons


The number of people becoming ill with lung injuries possibly linked to vaping continues to climb as states like Connecticut report more hospitalizations.

Two more cases of serious lung illness have been reported in the state, bringing the total to 13 people. That’s according to the Department of Public Health. That news follows an increase in cases nationwide.

In the first three months after getting his Dexcom continuous glucose monitor, Ric Peralta managed to reduce his average blood sugar level by three percentage points.

"It took me from not-very-well-managed blood sugar to something that was incredibly well managed," says Peralta, a 46-year-old optician in Whittier, Calif., who was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes in 2008.

UConn Health

Dr. Natalie Moore was keeping an eye on the news leading up to Labor Day weekend — experts were tracking Hurricane Dorian, a Category 5 storm that was headed for the Caribbean and the Florida coast.

Shona Na / Creative Commons

Connecticut has confirmed the first human case of Eastern equine encephalitis in the state since 2013, health officials announced Monday.

State Department of Public Health experts said that an adult from East Lyme tested positive for the virus, which is usually transmitted from infected mosquitoes. The resident became ill during the last week of August and remains hospitalized.

Nicole Leonard / Connecticut Public Radio

Gov. Ned Lamont and other state leaders promised Monday they would back efforts to eliminate the state’s religious exemption for mandatory childhood vaccinations in order to preserve immunization levels and prevent disease outbreaks.

Rep. Rosa DeLauro
Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

Connecticut’s 3rd District Representative Rosa DeLauro is calling for all e-cigarettes and vaping products to be taken off the market as concern grows about a mystery respiratory illness linked to their use. 

Matthew Lotz / U.S. Air Force

After months of prodding by lawmakers to take a stance on repealing Connecticut’s religious exemption from vaccines, state Health Commissioner Renee Coleman-Mitchell is expected to announce Monday that she is supporting the rollback. 

The state auditor is criticizing the Massachusetts public health department for taking too long to investigate elder abuse claims at nursing homes.

Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public Radio

The state is weighing its options on how to hold a Stamford-based pharmaceutical company accountable for its role in the nation’s opioid crisis. But if money ever does come to Connecticut from a potential settlement with Purdue Pharma, addiction recovery advocates have plenty of ideas on how it could be spent.

Vaping360 / Creative Commons

Connecticut’s commissioner of public health is now urging consumers not to use any e-cigarette or vaping products, as a mystery illness linked to vaping continues to spread.

Renée Coleman-Mitchell said her department has learned of six more patients hospitalized for severe lung disease, bringing the total number of potentially vaping-related cases in the state to 11. 

Naturegirl 78 / Creative Commons

Public health officials are warning Connecticut residents that they should take extra precautions to avoid the risk of contracting the eastern equine encephalitis virus from a mosquito bite.

The state Department of Public Health issued an advisory Wednesday urging people to limit their time outside between sunset and sunrise while the virus, also known as EEE, continues to pose a threat in the Northeast region of the country.

Robin Lubbock / WBUR

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) now says it will reopen certain medical deferred action cases, including for a number of Boston-area immigrants who previously received denial letters.

The announcement comes after a tumultuous week in which federal agencies contradicted one another and severely ill patients feared a total end to the humanitarian process that allows immigrants to remain longer in the U.S. while they receive medical treatment.

Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

Brian and Kristen Festa, of Bristol, sat beside their attorney in Hartford Superior Court Monday as they fought to advance their lawsuit against the state Department of Public Health over the release of school vaccination data.

Monday’s hearing centered around the state’s motion to dismiss the entire case. 

TBEC Review / Wikimedia Commons

Three more Connecticut residents were hospitalized for severe lung disease that is possibly related to vaping.

The announcement Friday by the state Department of Public Health brings the total number of cases to five people. State officials are working with federal agencies including the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to investigate a surge of severe respiratory illnesses across the country.

SLAWOMIR FAJER / ISTOCK / THINKSTOCK

Open enrollment for health insurance plans on Access Health CT — the state’s Affordable Care Act exchange — begins in November, but before that happens, the state Insurance Department needs to approve new premium prices.

Anthem and ConnectiCare are both seeking increases, and insurance representatives answered to state officials at a public information hearing Wednesday on the reasons why.

Lynne Sladky / Associated Press

Lucinda Canty is a researcher who focuses on maternal mortality. As part of her Ph.D. program at UConn, she interviewed several women who had severe complications in childbirth.

And while the specific details of their stories varied, they all pointed to a similar conclusion.

“With pregnancy, women are so vulnerable, and then you add labor on top of that, you need someone to be there to advocate and encourage you,” Canty said, “and we have a health care system that, even myself as an educated women, I still feel intimidated by it.”

Christiaan Colen / Wikimedia Commons

As students head back to school, teachers and administrators in Wolcott, Connecticut will start the school year without access to important files.

The Wolcott Public School system computers were attacked by ransomware, a type of computer virus that holds essential data hostage unless the school agrees to pay attackers a ransom.

This hour, we take a look at why hackers have increased attacks on local governments and schools for ransomware. What does this mean for Connecticut, a state with hundreds of separate municipal governments and school systems?

Government of Prince Edward Island / Creative Commons

Fewer Connecticut kindergarteners are getting vaccinated for measles, mumps and rubella, and more students are getting religious exemptions for mandatory vaccines, new data shows.

Measles, mumps and rubella vaccines are seen at the Rockland County Health Department in Pomona, N.Y., Wednesday, March 27, 2019.
Seth Wenig / Associated Press

Governor Ned Lamont is pushing back on his own Department of Public Health’s recent decision to withhold further data on school vaccination rates. 

Rhoda Baer/National Cancer Institute / Creative Commons

Renee Coleman-Mitchell, Connecticut’s public health commissioner, said Tuesday that she has no plans to release the most recent round of statewide school-by-school immunization data, despite calls this week from lawmakers who say parents should have access to the information as the school year begins. 

Dismaying immigrants and advocates, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) sent out letters saying the agency will no longer consider most deferrals of deportation for people with serious medical conditions, documents show. 

Matthew Lotz / U.S. Air Force

Researchers at UMass Amherst say it's unclear whether requiring vaccines in schools directly increases the number of children who get them.

Pages