health

On this week's episode, we examine the economic blow of students leaving college towns and the health risks associated with their planned return.  

 

This week, some employers are having difficulty reopening their businesses because many workers don't want to come back.  While there are health concerns, it also comes down to dollars and cents.  

Self-testing for COVID-19 could play a key role in fully reopening the economy.  But what are the concerns?  

Also, most rural hospitals have faced challenges preparing for the pandemic, even as they've seen fewer cases of the coronavirus disease. 

Those stories and more on this episode of Statewide.

Our lineup:

On this episode of Statewide, a task force has been created to figure out the best way to get students back to college this fall.  We talk with a higher education leader about what's at stake and the challenges ahead.

And, high school seniors missed out on traditional graduation ceremonies.  For valedictorians, that meant not being able to stand in front of their classmates and deliver an address.  But they still have things to say and we'll listen to a few of them.  

Those stories and more on this week's Statewide.

On this episode, we chat with Chicago White Sox broadcaster Jason Benetti.  The Illinois native tells us what he's doing to interact with fans while baseball is on hiatus.  

A couple on the front lines of battling COVID-19 talk about sacricfices they've made, including separation from their children.  

And if you are unsure how contact tracing works, we'll explain.  

On this week's Statewide, a nurse talks about the the risk of being on the front lines of the coronavirus fight. 

"As a healthcare worker, I think we're resigning ourselves to the fact that we're probably going to get it and we hope it doesn't affect us," said Thomas McClure, who works for Memorial Medical Center in Springfield. 

We also learn about a project to document how Illinois residents are coping during COVID-19. 

And, a group of neighbors found a way to gather for a block party - while still keeping a safe distance from each other.   

Photo courtesy of Pixabay.

Even during a pandemic, people still get broken legs. Some are still recovering from knee replacements.

It can be difficult to provide hands-on care when you have to stay six feet away from your patients.

But that’s the situation for outpatient clinics like CORA Edgebrook physical therapy in Rockford. Josh Meyers is one of their physical therapists.

After days of blasting President Donald Trump over his handling of the COVID-19 pandemic, Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker said the two spoke by phone Monday.

Pritzker has been especially critical regarding the lack of supplies going to states.  But he said in their conversation, the president was “very responsive.”

For the first time, an infant was among the newly discovered cases of COVID-19 announced daily by the Illinois Department of Public Health.

Officials on Sunday said they’d confirmed 296 new cases of coronavirus disease, though official tallies are thought to significantly understate the actual number of infections.

The Illinois Health and Hospital Association is asking for donations of face masks, respirators, and other personal protective equipment to stockpile now for healthcare workers tackling COVID-19 cases.

This week's program focuses on the changes we're seeing as a result of the coronavirus.  From how schools operate to customers panic buying at grocery stores.   

We're all feeling stressed during this time and we'll hear some ideas on how to cope with anxiety.  

That and more on this week's Statewide.

On this episode of Statewide, the spread of the coronavirus is dominating the headlines and causing numerous cancellations and other changes.  We'll learn about some of those.  Also, does wearing a mask help?  We'll hear from experts.

And an author of a new book on Abraham Lincoln's Second Inaugural Address talks about the importance of that speech and those who were in attendance that day in 1865.  Those stories and more on Statewide.

With a fourth case of COVID-19 announced in Illinois Monday, coronavirus continues to dominate headlines. But experts say there’s another, more common disease that ought to be getting more attention.

Five Illinois residents have died so far this year after vaping. Two of those people have died within the last week, while public health investigators have struggled to find what’s behind the spike in illnesses.

This week, we hear about a community once known as a "sundown town" because African Americans were warned to be out of the city limits by nightfall.  It can be difficult for towns to shake that history.  We hear from a reporter who spent time in one to see if things have improved today. 

A northern Illinois man shares his story of getting to know German POW's who were kept in the state during World War II.  

And we learn about a camp for kids with type 1 diabetes.  That and more on this episode of Statewide.

This week, we hear how the legal system can have a disproportionate impact on low income individuals.  Fines and fees can pile up and experts say that can keep people in a cycle of poverty.  We'll learn what other states are doing to improve the situation.

East St. Louis has a rich cultural history, but even many of its residents are unaware.  A new effort is underway to show the town's contributions.

And speaking of history, Illinois has plenty to brag about when it comes to homegrown musical artists.  We'll learn about plans for the Rock and Roll Museum on Route 66.

That and more on this episode of Statewide.

Keeping Pets Safe During The Holidays

Dec 24, 2018
Claire Buchanan

Holiday celebrations can mean health and safety risks for pets. But there are a few things you can do to keep the festivities merry and avoid an unexpected vet visit.

Susan Cechner is a veterinarian at Elburn Animal Hospital in northern Illinois. She says the most common injuries she sees during the holidays happen when pets eat things they shouldn’t.

NIU Researchers Will Test Health App Effectiveness

Sep 27, 2017
Flickr user Leonardo Angelini / "#fitness" (CC V 2.0)

Northern Illinois University health and computer science researchers want to test how a fitness app they developed works.

Researchers say they hope to have 100 people participate in the test. The eight-week study looks at how fitness apps and health behavior may be connected.

Participants would download the app to their phones, use it when they work out, and see how effective it is. The features would be adjusted continually by researchers.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

There’s a significant increase in reported gonorrhea cases in Winnebago County, according to the county’s health department.

The number of reported gonorrhea cases in the first half of this year increased by 50 percent from the number of cases reported in the first half of 2015. Todd Kisner, who is with the Winnebago County Health Department, says that’s a difference of more than 100 cases.

Katie Finlon / WNIJ

Counties across northern Illinois are part of a state-wide test this week for distributing medical supplies in case of a public health emergency.

The mass dispensing plan required by the state will measure how quickly county public health systems can distribute medicine and medical supplies during a public health emergency. State health officials say it will simulate a bioterrorism attack, but similar tactics also can be applied for large-scale disease outbreaks.

WUIS

The rate of Illinois residents with health insurance continues to grow.

In 2013, nearly 18 percent of Illinois adults didn’t have insurance.

The next year, the Affordable Care Act took effect. The rate of uninsured dropped to 15 percent that year.

Last year, it continued to fall.

A new report from the Centers for Disease Control puts the figure at more than 10 percent. That insurance comes from Obamacare for many Illinoisans.

Associated Press / NPR

Pope Francis says contraception might be acceptable for women threatened by the Zika virus. 

John Peller with the AIDS Foundation of Chicago says that’s given him hope that the exception might extend to other communicable diseases.

“We’re glad to see that the Pope is opening the door to condom use in a public health emergency and we think it’s really high time that the church recognized the role that condoms can have as a critical public health tool,” Peller said. 

Rauner Admin. Progress In Poison Hotline Cuts

Nov 19, 2015
Illinois Poison Center

Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner’s administration is moving forward with cuts to a poison hotline.

The Illinois Poison Center is a non-profit that includes a hotline to field calls from doctors, hospitals, or just people who are worried about something their kid ingested.

Now, the Poison Center stands to lose 2 million dollars in state money.

Rauner’s administration announced in June it wanted to stop the flow of government money for the program, since there isn’t a state budget. This week, the administration got the go-ahead to make that cut.

WUIS

Illinois’s lack of budget is threatening rape crisis services, programs that help women get screened for cervical cancer and the public health network. Senators meeting at the capitol Wednesday heard details of these and other woes. 

There's been a mumps outbreak at the University of Illinois, and measles are back, too.

“The reemergence of STDs – HIV.  The globalization of travel certainly puts these once-thought eradicated diseases back on our doorstep," says administrator of McLean County’s health department Walter Howe. 

Cancer May Be Caused By Bad Luck

Jan 5, 2015
MostlyScience.com

Most cancers can be attributed to bad luck rather than risk factors, like smoking. 

That’s according to a study in the journal Science.

Results show two thirds of the cancer types analyzed were caused by chance mutations. However, some of the most common and deadly cancers are still influenced by lifestyle.

Personality And Health May Be Connected

Dec 30, 2014

Your personality could influence your health.

That's according to a study published in the journal Psychoneuroendocrinology. Research shows extroverts tend to have stronger immune systems than introverts.

Experts say personality testing could help doctors design special treatments in the future.

Flickr user Tim Sackton / "Thanksgiving Turkey [327/366]" (CC v. 2.0)

Eating turkey leftovers may better your long-term health. That’s according to Medical News Today

Turkey helps keep insulin levels stable after meals. It also contains selenium--studies suggest the mineral may decrease the risk of prostate, lung, skin and other cancers.

A drug that makes most cancers more vulnerable to the body's immune system may mark a new era in treatment. That’s according to a study published in the journal Nature.

The medicine strips cancer cells of the "camouflage" they use to evade attack by the immune system.

In the study, some patients totally recovered from terminal bladder cancer.

Flickr user Tim Sackton / "Thanksgiving Turkey [327/366]" (CC v. 2.0)

Families planning a turkey dinner tomorrow should think about food safety. The Illinois health department says it's important to give a frozen turkey enough time to thaw thoroughly before cooking.

Thawing in the refrigerator takes about 24 hours for every four to five pounds and thawing in cold water takes about 30 minutes per pound.

That means a 20- to 24-pound turkey can take five or six days to thaw in the refrigerator. It takes 10 to 12 hours to thaw in cold water.

Working Non-Traditional Shifts Dulls Your Brain

Nov 4, 2014
Flickr user / Matt Seppings "Sunday night in the office..." (CC BY 2.0)

Working non-traditional hours can prematurely age the brain and dull intellectual ability. That's according to a study in the journal Occupational and Environmental Medicine.

Scientists say a decade of shifts aged workers' brains by more than six years and took five years to reverse its effects. Disrupting body clocks come with other risks to shift workers, including breast cancer and obesity.

Flickr user liz west / "milk" (CC v. 2.0)

Milk may not be as effective as experts thought in preventing bone fracture and maintaining bone health.

That's according to a recent study in the British Medical Journal.

Researchers found that sugars in milk may lead to increased mortality in men and women.

However, the authors say the study is observational and not meant to draw causal conclusions.

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