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Julie Albright is a lecturer in sociology at USC, as well as a licensed marriage and family therapist. Her research focuses on the intersection of culture and communication, social psychology and relationships/family. She studies modern courtship and dating, including a qualitative study of men who are "players" and the women who date them. Her current projects include a survey on body image and reactions to plastic surgery makeover shows, which will result in a book chapter and content for a documentary film titled "Made Over in America," for which she is associate producer.

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Dr. Herman A. Taylor Jr. is director and principal investigator of the Jackson Heart Study, the largest-ever, population-based study of heart disease and related disorders among African-Americans. In his capacity as director of the Mississippi-based study since 1998, he holds appointments at Jackson State University, Tougaloo College, and the University of Mississippi Medical Center. He also holds the medical center's Aaron Shirley Chair for the Study of Health Disparities.

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Dowell Myers, Ph.D, is professor of urban planning and demography in the School of Policy, Planning, and Development, at USC and author of Immigrants and Boomers: Forging a New Social Contract for the Future of America (Russell Sage Foundation, 2007.) He is chair of the school's Faculty Council and directs the school's Population Dynamics Research Group. Professor Myers leads the ongoing USC California Demographic Futures research project, which has recently focused on the upward mobility of immigrants to the U.S.

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The YMCA of San Francisco addresses many of the major challenges faced by Bay Area residents, including substance abuse prevention, child care, at-risk youth, the isolated elderly and new immigrants struggling for a foothold in America. Through its branches and community-based programs in four Bay Area counties, the YMCA of San Francisco offers mentoring and counseling services, health and wellness programs, environmental education in schools and youth sports and recreation.

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Alma L. Koch is a professor of health management and policy at SDSU's Graduate School of Public Health. Prior to joining the SDSU faculty, she was project director for the section of public health and preventive dentistry at UCLA. She has held numerous research positions as an investigator and a consultant, focusing on issues of health care finance, provider reimbursement, quality assessment and long-term care. Philosophically, Koch believes in a national health insurance system, with universal access to all citizens and residents in the United States.

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Whether they involve wrong-site surgeries, poor physician handwriting or prescription dose miscalculations, medical errors are rampant in America’s health care system. Following up on its landmark 1999 study,“To Err is Human,” the Institute of Medicine in 2006 found that a hospital patient is the victim of a medical error every single day he or she is hospitalized.

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Journalists have to ask hard questions about where sources get their money – and about the science they are promoting. Following the money trail can be daunting. But journalists and whistleblowers are doing just that and uncovering important connections. Here's what to look for.

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This story is Part 13 of a 15-part series that examines health care needs in Gary, Ind.

The health of a city’s residents is inextricably linked to its economic vitality, according to historians, and the business and political leaders of Gary.

They said the high rates of chronic disease and infant mortality plaguing Gary did not occur in a vacuum, but resulted from 40 years of urban decline, generations of poverty and high unemployment, a lack of access to health care providers, poor lifestyle choices, historic racism and an evolution in American manufacturing that collectively have decimated industrial urban America.

 

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