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Picture of Katy  Murphy

I’m an education writer. My job at the Oakland Tribune is, mostly, to report on the local public school systems and the people in them. But the context in which children live -- and in the case of this project, breathe -- often comes into my reporting, too. It has to. Asthma is one of those realities.

Picture of Pauline Bartolone

When I left for a week of reporting in rural California in late February, I didn't know I would come back with two stories about the devastating health consequences of isolation.

I'm not just talking about the geographic isolation one finds in a remote area. From the hilly evergreen landscape of eastern Shasta County, to the agricultural flatlands of Tulare County in the South Central Valley, I witnessed how isolation can leave people in the dark about keeping healthy, lead to emotional despair, and pose real barriers to quality of life.

Picture of Jasmin Mara López

As summer temperatures rise, so do fears of asthma and other illnesses caused by all the air pollution converging on the east Los Angeles community of Boyle Heights. With its proximity to freeways, industrial sites and shipping corridors, activists say the geography of Boyle Heights brings a disproportionate health burden to residents.

Picture of Bernice Yeung

Nearly every day, Arleen Hernandez battles an aging septic tank that backs up into her toilet and shower. Upon moving to Parklawn in 1986, she didn’t realize her new neighborhood lacks basic public services.

Picture of Kate Long

West Virginia has the nation's worst statistics in 10 of 12 categories in the new 2011 Gallup Healthways ranking. More than one in three West Virginians -- 35.3 percent -- are now obese.

Picture of Collin Tong

A coalition of local and global health groups have banded together to bring the lessons they've learned in developing countries to south King County, where the health index is as bad as Nairobi.

Picture of Farida Jhabvala

Radio journalist Farida Jhabvala examines how one facet of health reform might help uninsured families in Fresno, California's poorest county - but political leaders there don't want to participate.

Picture of Barbara Feder Ostrov

A blockbuster drug's approval revoked, rising STD rates, and a politician's surprising views on asthma, plus more from our Daily Briefing.

Picture of Ruxandra Guidi

Just two hours east from my home in urban San Diego, the Anza-Borrego mountains give way to open skies and desert, followed by miles upon miles of bright green crop land. The semi-rural Imperial County is home to almost 200,000 people, most of them Latino, spread out over 4,000 square miles into small but tight-knit communities. Life here is strikingly different from the bustle of the coastal cities; one of the reasons why I love reporting in this part of Southern California.

Picture of Elizabeth Varin

Theoretically, Imperial Valley should be one of the healthiest areas of the nation if you look at food production. With a more than $1 billion agriculture industry growing almost anything under the sun, including artichokes, bamboo shoots, citrus, hay, leafy greens, broccoli, cauliflower, and more than 100 other types of crops, residents should have a nearly unlimited supply of fresh fruit, vegetables and meat, leading to a health community.

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U.S. children and teens have struggled with increasing rates of depression, anxiety and suicidal behavior for much of the past decade. Join us as we explore the systemic causes and policy failures that have accelerated the crisis and its inequitable impact, as well as promising community-driven approaches and evidence-based practices. The webinar will provide fresh ideas for reporting on the mental health of youth and investigating the systems and services. Sign-up here!

The USC Center for Health Journalism at the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism is seeking two Engagement Editors and a social media consultant to join its team. Learn more about the positions and apply.

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