covid-19

Justin Hicks/IPBS

It had been a while since Stacey heard from her son, who’s incarcerated at Miami Correctional Facility in Bunker Hill, Indiana. They had an argument a few months ago, but she kept track of him through relatives who communicated with him more regularly, and even saved his voicemails so she could play them back whenever she missed him. 

Then on Wednesday, Stacey’s son sent her a message: “I have covid love u.” 

Lee V. Gaines/Side Effects Public Media

Sierra is in a bind. She and her husband have two children — ages three and nine years old — and they live in Urbana, a college town in east-central Illinois. 

Natalie Krebs / Side Effects Public Media

Teaching is already challenging enough without a pandemic shaking up how the classroom operates. As schools reopen, many districts are focused on keeping their staff and students safe from COVID-19. But the pandemic is also taking a toll on teachers’ mental health. 

Photo courtesy of Indiana University

Pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca announced Wednesday morning that its COVID-19 vaccine trial is on hold after a volunteer in the UK had an unexplained illness.

Photo courtesy of Indiana University

Update, Sept. 9, 2020: AstraZeneca announced that its COVID-19 vaccine trial is on hold. Read more.

The Indiana University School of Medicine announced it has been selected to participate in an international COVID-19 vaccine trial.  

Because Of COVID-19: People Are Losing Health Insurance

Sep 3, 2020
Image via Pixabay

There are few aspects of life that have not been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Side Effects Public Media has launched a Facebook Live series called “Because of COVID-19” to examine these ripple effects and offer solutions and resources.

Our first edition looked at the way many people have lost their jobs and their employer-provided health insurance due to layoffs and business closures. 

Justin Hicks/IPB News

On a Friday evening in late June, Liliana Quintero received a call from one of the Spanish interpreters working at a COVID-19 testing site in Goshen, Indiana. The area has one of Indiana’s higher Latinx populations and higher rates of COVID-19 cases, according to state data.

“[He was] saying, ‘Liliana I need to inform you that the nurse who is in charge of this site just told me that each time that she sees Hispanics coming to this site, she's going to call the police,’” recalls Quintero, director of the Northern Indiana Hispanic Health Coalition, an Elkhart-based health education and advocacy nonprofit.

Flickr

When the COVID shutdown hit, lots of people lost jobs and couldn’t pay their rent. States and cities responded by putting a moratorium on evictions, but those are ending. Housing advocates are now bracing for a flood of evictions — and a public health problem.

Paige Pfleger / Side Effects Public Media

Across the Midwest and the nation, many COVID-19 cases have been concentrated in nursing homes. It’s often the result of an outbreak. But sometimes, it’s actually by design. 

Yousuf El-Jayyousi, a junior engineering student at the University of Missouri, wanted guidance and reassurance it would be safe to go back to school for the fall semester. He tuned into a pair of online town halls organized by the university hoping to find that.

He did not.

Courtesy of Amanda Zimmerman

As some Midwest school districts open with in-person classes, school nurses face a big challenge. They play a crucial role in keeping kids safe from COVID-19. And they have to handle many other health issues. A middle school nurse in Fort Dodge, Iowa, explains how she’s preparing.

Eric Rudd|Indiana University

As colleges across the country welcome students back to campus, incoming freshmen are starting college in the middle of a pandemic. And, many are struggling with a tough decision to start or defer college this fall.

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.   

Wikimedia Commons

July marked 30 years since President Bush signed the Americans with Disabilities Act into law. And while the U.S. has come far since then, the nation still has a long way to go when it comes to achieving health equity. The current public health crisis of COVID-19 has only exacerbated existing inequities for people with disabilities. 

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.

Courtesy of Angela Kender

More than 1,200 people in Missouri have died from COVID-19. As the toll rises each day, the human aspect can get obscured. Angela Kender is looking to change that.

After losing her mother to COVID-19 in June, Kender started a project to commemorate other victims. She’s collecting their photographs at missouricovidmemorial@gmail.com. She has already has dozens of photos, and plans to show them to lawmakers at the Missouri state capitol.

You Asked: How Contact Tracing Works

Jul 31, 2020
Photo by GORDON JOHNSON/Pixabay

Experts say contact tracing is key to understanding and managing the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, and many community members have questions about the process. Side Effects received dozens of those questions through our partnership with Indiana Public Broadcasting. 

Indiana Department of Correction

Under COVID-19 restrictions, inmates at the Indiana Women’s Prison have spent many hours a day locked in their cells, which do not have toilets or running water and can get hotter than outside. The conditions have prompted health and fire safety concerns from advocates, politicians — even employees — especially in recent weeks as temperatures climbed.

But the prison recently took one step to help with those concerns, at least temporarily. 

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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