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epidemics

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In today's hyper-evolving social media world, it might seem quaint, if not downright foolish, to believe that old school journalism's low-tech and low-cost approaches — a pen, a pad, and shoe-leather investigation — could result in an article that ignites a global furor.

 

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The people of Stockton and surrounding San Joaquin County, Calif., almost 700,000 strong, continue to experience among the worst health outcomes by any measure both statewide and nationally. I've chronicled this situation for the past eight years. At times I've been able to include proposals for change that some very dedicated community professionals have put forward. But little has changed. If anything, the county finds itself in more serious decline than ever before.

Picture of Barbara Feder Ostrov

Public health officials are increasingly concerned about a possible pandemic amid reports of hundreds of new cases of swine flu in Mexico that have killed up to 60 people. Eight swine flu cases have been reported in the United States, in California and Texas. Mexican authorities are taking drastic measures to contain the swine flu outbreak, closing schools and universities in Mexico City.

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Harold Goldstein is executive director of the California Center for Public Health Advocacy, a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization established jointly by the Northern and Southern California public health associations to raise awareness about critical public health issues and mobilizes communities to promote effective health policies. Goldstein is a nationally recognized leader in the growing movement to address the epidemics of childhood obesity and diabetes by advocating for state and local policies that promote healthy eating and physical activity.

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Our California Fellowship supports reporters in the Golden State pursuing ambitious projects on overlooked health and health equity issues.

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