social determinants of health

Health researchers in Indiana are knocking on doors to collect surveys and DNA samples. A growing number of studies factor in zip code when considering health outcomes.
Jill Sheridan/IPB News

When health researchers make headlines, it’s often for a sensational project – like manipulating genes to create a baby. But others are examining broader issues, including how – and where – you live affects your health.

On a melancholy Saturday this past February, Shalon Irving's "village" — the friends and family she had assembled to support her as a single mother — gathered at a funeral home in a prosperous black neighborhood in southwest Atlanta to say goodbye.

To understand why teen pregnancy rates are so high in Texas, meet Jessica Chester. When Chester was in high school in Garland, she decided to attend the University of Texas at Dallas. She wanted to become a doctor.

"I was top of the class," she says. "I had a GPA of 4.5, a full-tuition scholarship to UTD. I was not the stereotypical girl someone would look at and say, 'Oh, she's going to get pregnant and drop out of school.' "

Can Comfort Care At The ER Help Older People Live Longer And Suffer Less?

May 26, 2017

A man sobbed in a New York emergency room. His elderly wife, who suffered from advanced dementia, had just had a breathing tube stuck down her throat. He knew she never would have wanted that. Now he had to decide whether to reverse the life-sustaining treatment that medics had begun.

American Indian and Alaska Native families are much more likely to have an infant die suddenly and unexpectedly, and that risk has remained higher than in other ethnic groups since public health efforts were launched to prevent sudden infant death syndrome in the 1990s. African-American babies also face a higher risk, a study finds.

Lauren Chapman/WFYI

Janaya Wilkins, 25, dropped out of high school when she was a teenager. She has tried and failed to get her GED twice since then.

Now, Wilkins, a mother of two is giving high school another shot in her hometown of Indianapolis.  

And she’s getting help sticking to her goals from a life coach, whose services are paid for by an unexpected source, her health insurance company.

Trump’s Vow To Squeeze ‘Sanctuary Cities’ Could Play Havoc With Health Programs

May 2, 2017
Pixabay

 

The Trump administration’s tough stance on immigration has some local health department officials worried it could spur cuts in federal funding and complicate a wide variety of programs, from efforts to battle the opioid epidemic to domestic violence initiatives.

Poor people who reside in expensive, well-educated cities such as San Francisco tend to live longer than low-income people in less affluent places, according to a study of more than a billion Social Security and tax records.

Side-By-Side Kansas Counties Are Worlds Apart When It Comes To Health

Mar 21, 2016

At her home studio in Westwood, Kansas, yoga instructor Marilyn Pace leads a class of 5-to-8-year olds. With the help of songs, games and other kid-friendly teaching methods, she guides her small students through poses like the cobra, the triangle and the downward-facing dog.

Tatjana Alvegard takes her daughter, Kaya, to Pace’s classes regularly.

Quest For Blood Pressure Cuff Highlights Inequality

Feb 17, 2016

The doctor told Sharlene Adams to get a blood pressure cuff, so Adams set out to buy one.

For Adams, who lives in West Baltimore, that meant four bus rides, a stop for a doctor’s signature, two visits to a downtown pharmacy for other medical supplies, a detour to borrow money for a copay, a delay when a bus broke down, and, at last, a purchase at a pharmacy on the east side of town.

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