Public Health News For Indiana

Credit Pixabay/CC0

An opioid epidemic. High smoking rates. Health care provider shortages. Indiana faces serious public health challenges. Side Effects Public Media provides in-depth coverage of these issues and more.

Please write us with story ideas or questions at health@wfyi.org  

Ways to Connect

PickPic

New mom Briante Melton of Indianapolis met her best friend at her lowest moment.

“I just felt kind of like hopeless,” she said. “Like I was going to feel like that forever.”

After her one-year-old son Isaiah was born, she says she suffered post-partum depression. When she didn’t always feel like getting outdoors, help came to her inside her own home through the Nurse Family Partnership at Goodwill Industries.

At a news conference on Aug. 26, Indiana State Health Commissioner Dr. Kris Box said it’s crucial for Hoosiers to participate in contact tracing.  

“So If you get a text or a phone call from the state department of health about an important public health matter, please answer the text, answer the call,” she said.  

Shepard Community Center

When Marion County Health Commissioner Dr. Virginia Caine fell down a flight of stairs recently, a pill to treat her arthritis became a way to cope with the pain. But she forgot her insurance card on a trip to the pharmacy, and the out-of-pocket price of her prescription – $230 – gave Caine sticker shock.

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.” 

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.  

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.

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.

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.

Pages