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Conspiracies and misinformation continue to surround the COVID-19 pandemic.

The internet has made it easier for false information about the virus to appear factual, changing the way some people react to it. Indiana Public Broadcasting’s All IN spoke with IUPUI Director of Epidemiology Education Tom Duszynki and Joanne Miller, professor of political science and international relations at University of Delaware,  about some of these conspiracies and false claims as well as their impact.

Indiana Department of Correction

Indiana prisons have seen an August spike in coronavirus infections, with 159 new cases reported since July 31. 

Reported cases of the virus trickled in throughout July: Nine people in state prisons tested positive for the disease, bringing the total to 733 cases by the end of last month. The recent surge is concentrated in two facilities. The Putnamville Correctional Facility has seen 86 cases, and the New Castle Correctional Facility has 72 new cases. As of August 13, the new total among all state prisons is 892 cases — an increase of more than 20% in two weeks.   

Courtesy of Northwestern Medicine

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, 28-year-old Mayra Ramirez was working as a paralegal for an immigration law firm in Chicago. She enjoyed walking her dogs and running 5K races. 

Ramirez has a condition requiring medication that could’ve suppressed her immune system but was otherwise healthy. When the Illinois governor issued a shelter-in-place order in March, she began working from home, hardly leaving the house. So she has no idea how she contracted COVID-19.

States continue to reopen, but the COVID-19 pandemic is far from over, according to experts on Indiana Public Broadcasting’s All IN talk show. The experts discussed the current state of the pandemic and how state officials have responded — as well as the need for more data.

¿Qué Pasa, Midwest? Season 5: Helpers In The COVID Crisis

Aug 4, 2020

¿Qué Pasa, Midwest? is a bilingual podcast for midwestern Latinx who are missing an essential piece of their cultural identity. By sharing their stories, it aims to build a sense of hope and community. Season 5 tackles the coronavirus — but not through statistics and news. This season is about the people who are finding solutions to problems caused by the pandemic.

Francisco Bonilla is a pastor in Carthage, Mo., catering to the spiritual needs of the town's growing Latinx community. But he's also a media personality, casting his voice far beyond the white-painted walls of Casa de Sanidad. Inside the church, Bonilla runs a low-power, Spanish-language radio station.

Steve Brown, WOSU

The nation’s automakers are scrambling to keep assembly lines staffed during the COVID crisis. At a Honda plant in Marysville, Ohio, that means calling on office workers to move to the line. And that has triggered anxiety among some workers.

Carter Barrett/Side Effects Public Media

Dr. Blessing Ogbemudia graduated from Indiana University’s medical school in May. As he was celebrating with a few friends, he received an anonymous message on Instagram. It contained an audio clip of someone talking about him. 

Credit Kristina Ortiz

Kristina Ortiz and Tim Himes aren’t brother and sister by blood, but they might as well be. They’ve never known life apart. Ortiz was six months old when her foster mother brought Himes home from the hospital.  

“I’m always there for you,” Himes said on a video call with Ortiz. 

The COVID-19 pandemic has been a stressful time, and a lot of people experiencing anxiety and depression might be feeling it for the first time.

Indiana Public Broadcasting’s All In spoke with mental health experts about what these things feel like, why they happen and what can be done to help.

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