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Barbara Feder Ostrov's Health Journalism Blog

Veteran health journalist Barbara Feder Ostrov blogs about all things health journalism-related, in particular providing tips for reporters covering health policy, health reform, public health, community health, local health issues, access to care, health insurance, SCHIP, Medicaid and Medicare.

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Journalists - particularly those in rural areas - will definitely want to follow the epidemiological investigation of swine flu that struck a nine-year-old Imperial County girl and a 10-year-old boy in adjacent San Diego County.The kids are fine now, but public health officials have never before seen this strain of swine flu in the United States. Here is the AP story.

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Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Oregon) on Friday gave an engaging speech on his health reform plan at the Association of Health Care Journalists conference in Seattle, getting in a nice laugh line when he called COBRA insurance “the only federal program named after a poisonous snake.”

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The catastrophic 6.3 magnitude earthquake in Italy, the recent 4.3 temblor near San Jose and a rash of small quakes in Southern California made me wonder about something I haven't thought about in quite a while: What's going on with hospital seismic safety in quake-prone California? We're already overdue for "the big one."

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When more than half of American families sampled in a recent poll say they're skimping on medical care to save money, that's a story by any measure - and one that's easy to localize. A new study from the

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The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation's $100 million grant to the International Partnership for Microbicides is big news for HIV prevention researchers frustrated by years of skimpy funding and scientific setbacks. The United Kingdom Department for International Development kicked in another $28.5 million.

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While reading New York Times health reporter Tara Parker-Pope's recent blog post about children's health care, I was struck by the comment of a doctor named Elise:

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SCHIP is back on the table!

Let the wrangling begin.

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