AJ Mast for Side Effects Public Media

When Ronson Rowley was a teen, he said he used to sneak into a nightclub called the Ten Bar. “It was the only black gay club here in Indianapolis,” he recalled. One night he ran into his uncle.

“He looked me dead in the face,” he recalled. “And [he] said what are you doing here? I said, the same thing you’re doing here.”

Gretchen Frazee / WTIU News

At the National Black Caucus of State Legislators Conference in Indianapolis,  U.S. Surgeon General and former Indiana Health Commissioner Jerome Adam called for racial equity in addressing the opioid epidemic.

In Louisville, Kentucky, traditionally known as a hotbed of air pollution and an uncomfortable place to live for a person with asthma, a community-run study is using big data to figure out how to make its residents healthier.

For more than a year, NeDina Brocks-Capla avoided one room in her large, brightly colored San Francisco house — the bathroom on the second floor.

"It was really hard to bathe in here, and I found myself not wanting to touch the walls," she explains. The bathroom is where Brocks-Capla's son Kareem Jones died in 2013 at age 36 from sickle cell disease.

It's not just the loss of her son that upsets Brocks-Capla. She believes that if Jones had gotten the proper medical care, he might still be alive today.

Cancer-Coaching Grandmothers Hold Hands, Lift Spirits

Oct 26, 2017
Carolina Hidalgo / St. Louis Public Radio

When a new friend threatened to cancel her mastectomy, Ella Jones’ mothering instincts kicked in.

“I went over to the bed, and I rubbed her and talked to her, and explained in general terms what was going to happen,” said Jones. “If she had gotten up out of that bed and left, she would have never done any treatment.”

It's a Sunday morning at the Abyssinian Baptist Church, a famous African-American church in the Harlem area of New York City. The organist plays as hundreds of worshippers stream into the pews. The Rev. Calvin O. Butts III steps to the pulpit.

"Now may we stand for our call to worship," says Butts, as he begins a powerful three-hour service filed with music, dancing, prayers and preaching. "How good and pleasant it is when all of God's children get together."

A group of 12 contiguous U.S. states in the Midwest and South has the highest rate of adult tobacco use in the nation. If taken as a country, this group would rank among those with the highest smoking rates in the world.

This is according to a report released by Truth Initiative last week. Indiana is one of these twelve states, along with neighboring Ohio, Michigan, West Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Arkansas, Oklahoma and Missouri.

Emily Forman / Side Effects Public Media

Janice McClain climbed aboard the van at a stop in downtown Indianapolis and took a seat among a dozen or so other travelers on a recent September day. They were all women and were all on their way to visit children, spouses and fiancés in prison.

Carolina Hidalgo / St. Louis Public Radio

Every year, for the past 15 years, a group of first-year medical students in St. Louis, Missouri have climbed on board three yellow school buses and headed north.