Public Health News For Indiana

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An opioid epidemic.  High  smoking rates.  Health care provider shortages. Indiana faces serious public health challenges.   Side Effects Public Media provides in-depth coverage of these issues and more.

Please write us with story ideas or questions at sideeffects@wfyi.org.  

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Seth Herald / for Side Effects Public Media

On a recent morning in downtown Tippecanoe County Indiana, a standing-room-only crowd showed up for a county commissioners meeting. The issue at hand? Renewing the county’s syringe exchange program.


Indiana Child Services Director Resigns With Scathing Letter To Governor

Dec 20, 2017

Indiana Department of Child Services Director Mary Beth Bonaventura says the lives of Hoosier children has been put at risk because of steps taken by Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb’s administration.

urbanworkbench / https://www.flickr.com/photos/urbanworkbench/

Indiana emergency physicians are concerned a new insurance policy to curb emergency department visits could scare away patients. The policy, already in place in three other states, will take effect for Indiana Anthem policy holders next month.

CREATIVE COMMONS/PIXABAY

Indiana spent more money on anti-smoking programs this year than last. But it’s still a lot less than the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends.


How To Get Hospitals To Check A Patient's Drug History? Make It Easy.

Dec 11, 2017
Samantha Horton / Side Effects Public Media

Doctors move fast in the ER. Every second counts. That’s why Dr. Gina Huhnke is excited about a new way to quickly check her patients’ history with narcotics. She’s the emergency department director of Deaconess Midtown Hospital in Evansville.


Embattled Indiana Syringe Exchange Lives To See Another Year

Dec 4, 2017
kdermerly / Flickr

By the slimmest of margins, Tippecanoe County, Indiana’s embattled needle exchange program will survive for at least one more year.

Aric Hartvig / WFYI

Syringe exchanges are a controversial concept. Even when they're successful at containing disease, they can be difficult to sell to the public. In Madison County, Indiana, residents' ethical concerns shut down a program, which was put in place to curb rates of hepatitis C.

Emily Forman / WFYI

When President Trump declared the opioid epidemic a public health emergency in late October, it triggered a regulatory change intended to make it easier for people to get care in places with provider shortages. This declaration allows for the prescribing  of addiction medicine virtually, without doctors ever seeing the patient in person. (The regulatory change is not fully implemented until the DEA issues further rules.)

 


State AG Deems Cannabidiol Illegal Except for Epilepsy Patients

Nov 22, 2017
Steve Burns / WTIU News

A decision from Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill regarding cannabidiol, or CBD oil, could impact those who already use the hemp-derived extract for pain relief or other medical benefits.

shutterstock

An Indiana lawmaker wants the state to take the next step toward making Indiana’s drug database more effective at preventing opioid addiction.

Fourteen states currently require both physicians and pharmacists to check someone’s prescription history before dispensing certain powerful medicines, but Indiana isn’t one of them.

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