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If you are anticipating covering Southern California's inevitable weather stories this summer -- heat waves, water shortages, wildfires -- consider this: These narratives are health, environment, public policy and economic stories all in one.

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Nursing homes in California have reaped $880 million in new funding from a 2004 state law designed to help them hire more caregivers and boost wages. But many homes did just the opposite.

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Mike Tharp is the executive editor of the Merced Sun-Star. He attended the Mar. 2010 seminar for the California Health Journalism Fellows as the editor of Fellow Danielle Gaines, where he met the subject of this column, Dr. Edward Newton, chair of Emergency Medicine at the Los Angeles County USC Hospital.

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If you watch cable, it may have been hard to miss that this week was Discovery Health channel's "Baby Week".  Like "Shark Week" on Discovery proper or "Croc Week" on Animal Planet, these programming spectacles are highly promoted and attract advertisers and eyeballs alike.  As the writer of a blog on postpartum depression, my antennae went up when I heard one of the "Baby Week" specials would focus on postpartum depression.  I knew a lot of moms would be watching, and wanted to make sure I tuned in to

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We have a guest post today from Felice Freyer, veteran medical writer for the Providence Journal, member of the Association of Health Care Journalists Board of Directors and chair of AHCJ's Right to Know Committee.

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Wilma Chan is an Alameda County supervisor and the former chair of the California State Assembly Committee on Health, a state assembly committee with jurisdiction over health care, Medi-Cal, mental health licensing of health and health-related professionals, and long-term health care facilities in California. 

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Dr. Thomas R. Moore is chair of reproductive medicine at the UCSD School of Medicine and director of the school's maternal-fetal medicine fellowship training program. Moore is an expert on fetal diseases and high-risk and problem pregnancies. Moore's research focus is the biology of mother and fetus, and his research of amniotic fluid regulation is widely cited. His clinical specialties include all aspects of maternal-fetal medicine, especially fetal movement, diabetes and pregnancy, amniotic fluid volume and fetal diagnosis.

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Terry Gock, Ph.D., M.P.A., is director of Pacific Clinics' Asian Pacific Family Center, which serves the Asian-American and Pacific Islander populations in the San Gabriel Valley through programs in mental health, substance abuse prevention, child abuse prevention, gang and violence prevention. Mr. Gock is also an organizational consultant and a program proposal reviewer in private practice for various nonprofit and government organizations, as well as a clinical and forensic psychologist.

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