Health+Harvest

NPR Illinois Community Advisory Board identified the subject of food and health as important subjects for coverage in 2012. Health+Harvest provides for community engagement on health and food issues along with reporting on farm, field and fuel.  From seed to plate, from farmer's markets to GMOs, central Illinoisans need to know how to stay healthy and what they are eating.  In 2013, NPR Illinois joined a consortium of public media in the Harvest Public Media network.  The network provides broader coverage to Midwest food issues.

By examining these local, regional and national issues and their implications with in-depth and unbiased reporting, Health+Harvest fills a critical information void.

Support for Health+Harvest coverage comes from Central Illinois Farm Bureaus and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.  If you'd like to support this initiative, please contact Nice Bogdanovich at 217-206-9847.

Updated August 19, 6:28 p.m.

When Dylan Nelson was admitted to the ICU in July with difficulty breathing, his mother, Kim Barnes. figured it was his asthma acting up. But when she got to the hospital in Burlington, Wis., he couldn't speak. He was intubated. His blood oxygen level was only 10%. He was put into a medically induced coma.

Barnes told the nurse she worried she wouldn't see her 26-year-old son again. The nurse reassured her.

Friday News Roundup - International

Aug 16, 2019

In the disputed territory of Kashmir, Pakistan’s army said three of its soldiers and five Indian soldiers are dead after an exchange of fire at the border.

Indian government officials denied the claim, saying that there were no Indian fatalities.

Friday News Roundup - Domestic

Aug 16, 2019

This week, the Trump administration announced new regulations that would significantly decrease the number of immigrants who can legally enter and remain in the U.S.

CNN reports:

The FDA has approved a new drug that promises a simpler and far more effective treatment for drug-resistant tuberculosis. But not everyone is celebrating.

Doctors Without Borders has concerns about a critical bottom-line issue: How much will the drug cost in poor and middle-income countries, where most TB patients reside?

The stakes are so high because the difference between the new regimen — involving a drug called pretomanid — and the current drug regimen is so dramatic.

One of the biggest fears of the fresh fruit industry just came true.

A fungal disease that has been destroying banana plantations in Asia has arrived in Latin America.

"For me, the worst moment was [seeing] the first pictures," says Fernando Alexander García-Bastidas, a banana researcher at the Dutch company Keygene, who carried out tests confirming what had happened.

Katy Milkman played tennis at Princeton, and when she finished college, she went to the gym every day. But when she started grad school, her fitness routine went south.

"At the end of a long day of classes, I was exhausted," Milkman says. "Frankly, the last thing I wanted to do was drag myself to the gym. What I really wanted to do was watch TV or read Harry Potter."

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

For years, American smokers have been spared the unpleasant images of gangrene infected feet, swollen tongues overtaken by cancerous tumors and blackened lungs that are often plastered onto packs of cigarettes sold around the world. But that momentary reprieve before lighting up may only last a few more years.

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST:

Say the word "exosuit" and superheroes come to mind — somebody like Tony Stark from Marvel Comics, whose fancy suit enables him to become Iron Man.

In the central Idaho community of Arco, where Lost Rivers Medical Center is located, the elk and bear outnumber the human population of a thousand. The view from the hospital is flat grassland surrounded by mountain ranges that make for formidable driving in wintertime.

"We're actually considered a frontier area, which I didn't even know was a census designation until I moved there," says Brad Huerta, CEO of the hospital. "I didn't think there's anything more rural than rural."

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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It's a common problem for many older adults. You may have more than one doctor and each prescribes a different drug for a different illness. Before you know it, you're taking multiple medications and start feeling tired, dizzy or nauseous. Your doctor interprets that as a new symptom for a new disease and prescribes yet another drug.

An epidemic of African Swine Fever is sweeping through China's hog farms, and the effects are rippling across the globe, because China is a superpower of pork. Half of the world's pigs live in China — or at least they did before the epidemic began a year ago.

"Every day, we hear of more outbreaks," says Christine McCracken, a senior analyst at RaboResearch, which is affiliated with the global financial firm Rabobank.

Most children enrolled in Medicaid who get a diagnosis of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder don't get timely or appropriate treatment afterward. That's the conclusion of a report published Thursday by a federal watchdog agency, the Department of Health and Human Services' Office of Inspector General.

When they started practicing medicine, most surgeons say, there was little or no information about just how many pain pills patients needed after specific procedures.

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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Deep in the Harvard Forest of Massachusetts lives a towering red oak tree. It's no different from its neighbors except for the fact that it tweets.

Updated at 5:41 p.m. ET

Planned Parenthood says it will formally withdraw from the nation's family planning program for low-income people within days, unless a federal court intervenes.

A few days ago, my dad gave me a call. "When we land in D.C., it's going to be Eid al-Adha," he said. "You know, the one where we eat kharouf."

No, I did not know. I had never observed the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha.

Although my father is a Muslim, my mother is Filipino and a strict Catholic. My parents divorced when I was a child. For most of my life, my dad lived in Cairo while I grew up in Southern California. I'd visit him in the summertime. But the trips never intersected with an Eid celebration.

Like any good story about a scientific discovery, Walter A. Brown's account of the history of lithium features plenty of improvisation, conjecture and straight-up kismet.

Unlike many such stories, though, it also features a fair share of personal bias, senseless puttering and random speculation — on part of these scientific researchers.

The first time Lori Tipton tried MDMA, she was skeptical it would make a difference.

"I really was, at the beginning, very nervous," Tipton remembers.

MDMA is the main ingredient in club drugs ecstasy or molly. But Tipton wasn't taking pills sold on the street to get high at a party.

She was trying to treat her post-traumatic stress disorder, with the help of licensed therapists.

Tipton was given a dose of pure MDMA. Then she lay down in a quiet room with two specially-trained psychotherapists, one woman and one man.

"Water, water everywhere." That line from poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge could be the mantra for rain-weary residents across the country. Some regions have seen record amounts of rain since early spring. The Mississippi River and tributaries spent months above flood stage, while all of the Great Lakes are nearly at or above historic highs.

Keith Kompoltowicz, chief of watershed hydrology for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in Detroit, says data show that the Great Lakes have been on the rise for several years, especially in recent months.

The politics of health care are changing. And one of the most controversial parts of the Affordable Care Act — the so-called "Cadillac tax" — may be about to change with it.

The Cadillac tax is a 40% tax on the most generous employer-provided health insurance plans — those that cost more than $11,200 per year for an individual policy or $30,150 for family coverage. It was a tax on employers and was supposed to take effect in 2018, but Congress has delayed implementation twice.

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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Lead contamination in the drinking water in Newark, N.J., is not a new problem, but the city's fleeting solution has become newly problematic.

Officials in Newark, the state's largest city, which supplies water to some 280,000 people, began to hand out bottled water Monday.

That's because the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has concerns about water filters that the city distributed to residents.

Emphysema is considered a smoker's disease. But it turns out, exposure to air pollution may lead to the same changes in the lung that give rise to emphysema.

Many major cities in Africa, Southeast Asia, and South America are falling dangerously behind in their efforts to provide residents with reliable and affordable access to clean water, according to a new report by the World Resources Institute. The data in the report offer a stark new account of the scale of the threat posed by unsafe and unaffordable water to public health and the economy in the Global South's quickly-expanding urban centers.

Officials said disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein died by suicide on Saturday morning. Epstein was being held in the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Manhattan, awaiting trial on sex-trafficking charges.

Boys played amid stinky puddles and dodged trash sludge oozing from plastic bags carpeting a muddy riverbed in Saidpur, a village that connects to Pakistan's capital, Islamabad, by a narrow road. "God forgive us," says a woman watching nearby, referring to the trash.

Munira recalls the river stones glinting under fresh water when she was a child. Now, "there's so much trash," says the 65-year-old, who has only one name.

South Korea is one of the most wired countries in the world. But that level of connectivity is a double-edged sword in a society that some experts say is becoming increasingly addicted to the Internet and where 95% of adults own a smartphone.

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